Do you have aches and pains that permeate your body along with fatigue, difficulty sleeping and loss of energy? If these symptoms sound familiar, you could have fibromyalgia, a condition that causes even minor pains to feel more severe because it affects the way the brain processes pain signals. Cognitive difficulties, headaches, abdominal cramping and depression are all symptoms that also oftentimes go hand in hand with fibromyalgia. While your fibromyalgia symptoms may have begun as a result of trauma to your body from surgery or injury, sometimes, the symptoms can build up slowly over time, seemingly with no discernible direct cause. Therefore, you may be unaware that you even have this condition. If these symptoms describe what you have been feeling and you were unsure why, this may seem a bit troubling, but fear not! Research has shown that physical therapy can be very effective at improving energy, decreasing pain and improving sleep and function.
We often get two common questions:
Why has my health care professional never referred me to physical therapy? Unfortunately, many health care professionals do not completely understand fibromyalgia or the various treatments that are available.
I already when to physical therapy, and why didn’t it help?
Unfortunately, even traditional physical therapy (mainly aimed at stretching and strengthening) doesn’t necessarily help if the soft tissue (muscle and fascia) is not treated. Traditional physical therapy clinics work in a group style environment and even knowledgeable physical therapists do not have the time to work specifically in a holistic manner to treat the various muscle and fascial restrictions.
So what can Rebalance do to help? We focus on three methods:
1. Pinpointing Your Trigger Points: As you may recall from some of our past posts and newsletters, trigger points are those nagging little knots that can restrict blood flow within our muscles. Trigger points can be a bit tricky, since the sharp pain they cause is sometimes only felt when the trigger point is directly touched or radiates to other areas of the body due to their referral patterns. A Rebalance therapist can help you to identify any trigger points that may be contributing to your fibromyalgia pain and perform trigger point release, in which we will use pressure to bring muscles from shortened to lengthened states to get your blood flowing properly and those little knots loosened up!
2. Keeping Your Tissues Well-Connected: Our connective tissue, or fascia, is so crucial to our daily movement and bodily functions because it connects all our organs with our muscles and bones, keeping everything moving fluidly and in sync. Fibromyalgia can cause a dull and persistent ache in our muscles and tissues, making fascia’s job more difficult. When fascia is injured or irritated in any way, our bodily movement becomes restricted, making even simple movements difficult and painful to perform. Our therapists can restore pain-free range of motion through soft tissue mobilization. Beneficial techniques include myofascial release, skin rolling, friction massage and deep tissue massage. We will determine which method will best help to increase your flexibility, blood flow and fluid movement so that fibromyalgia doesn’t keep you so stiffened up!
3. Switching Up Your Stretches: If the usual stretches you are doing have become too routine, you may not be feeling much pain relief anymore. Perhaps you are performing stretches incorrectly for your specific symptoms and this will only cause your pain to intensify. If you are thinking of starting a stretching or exercise plan for your fibromyalgia pain or your current routine isn’t working, we can help you to create a more personalized course of action. Based on your own unique factors, we will teach you customized stretches that focus on stabilizing your core to provide a strong and sturdy center for your body as well as stretches that will lengthen, strengthen and relax your muscles for better flexibility and mobility.
When your muscles are strengthened, relaxed and functioning properly, you are better equipped to handle the aches and pains life throws your way. Don’t allow fibromyalgia to keep sending your brain mixed signals that cause extra pain! Contact Rebalance today to face fibromyalgia with physical therapy.
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