How do you deal with your stress?
Do you clench your teeth? How about shrugging your shoulders at a loss of what to do next? Do you swallow your screams instead of lashing out?
The truth is that many of us are finding ourselves more stressed than ever. Working from home gives us few escapes from “the office,” and that prolonged stress can add up.
All of the ways you cope with stress can wreak havoc on the body – particularly in your jaw, neck, and head.
It can be confusing trying to figure out exactly how to trigger point yourself.
How often do you do it? How hard do you go? Do you repeat it? How do you know if you are on the right spot?
These are all legitimate questions.
The Cause of Your Shoulder Pain
When we hear that we have a problem with shoulder pain or our rotator cuff, we usually assume the worst.
Most of us know that the rotator cuff is a very important part of the shoulder. But besides that, most people don’t know much about it.
The rotator cuff is a group of 4 small muscles that hold the humorous (arm bone) into the gleno-humeral joint (the shoulder socket), and helps to stabilize the shoulder.
Every time that you move your hand, like when you type, write, knit, etc, you are using the rotator cuff muscles to stabilize your shoulder and hold your arm bone in place.
So it’s no wonder you feel the pain, we’re using it all the time.
Those of you who have thrown out their backs can attest, a pulled muscle can be more painful that a bone fracture or even than giving birth.
When you throw your back out, you are spraining or straining the muscles in the hips. A sprain or strain is a microscopic tearing of the muscle fibers. It is akin to fraying a rope. The muscle is made up of thousands of muscle fibers. When you pull or sprain or strain a muscle, you are tearing some of the fibers of that muscle.
And when that happens, the rest of the muscle reflexively contracts, to prevent further tearing. This is the start of a trigger point.
You may not know that you have a subscapularis or a serratus anterior, or care. But if you have shoulder pain, you may want to tune in and pay attention.
The human body is an amazing machine.
It is a big pulley system that all works together. Everything is connected. I am frequently amazed at how complex a machine the human body is.
Just as the flap of a butterflies wings on one side of the world can cause a tsunami on the other side of the world, a small muscle imbalance in one area of the body can cause immense pain and discomfort in another area of the body.
This is very accurate with knee pain. Most knee pain involves an imbalance of the muscles in the hip, caused by muscle spasm. Whether that muscle spasm in the hip causes the knee pain, or is from compensation for the knee pain, can be hard to say.
Pain has become a much discussed and debated topic as of late within the health care communities. Pain used to be viewed as a side effect or symptom of a disease process. It was thought that once you fix, cure, or calm down the disease process, the pain will go away. Pain was looked at as a side effect.
Now research is showing that pain can become a separate disease process and not just a symptom of another disease. Research has been increasing in this topic since the Institute of Medicine released a report calling on academia, government and physician groups to develop a plan for treating and managing pain.
The iliopsoas is a pretty cool muscle.
It’s one of the most complex muscles in the body, and it is the only lower back and hip muscle to attach to the front of the spine.
In fact, the iliopsoas is actually two muscles in one: the psoas muscle and the iliacus muscle.
The psoas muscle attaches along the lumbar spine and the intervertebral discs then descends obliquely to attach at the upper inner thigh bone. The iliacus muscle attaches to the upper two-thirds of the iliac fossa then descends to join the psoas major tendon, with some of its fibers attaching directly to the femure near the lesser trochanter.
The primary function of both of these muscles is hip flexion. In other words, these muscles work to lift the knee and take your next step while walking.
Ilio-tibial band syndrome (or IT Band Syndrome, for short) is quickly becoming one of the most common overuse injuries, especially among runners.
It’s also one of the most frustrating injuries. While most physical therapists, chiropractors and clinicians can easily identify and treat IT band syndrome, the average runner doesn’t have a clue.
Have you ever had a pain that’s right behind your neck and just behind between your shoulder blade and your spine?
It the type of pain that makes most people go crazy trying to reach their hands behind their head to rub their neck and shoulder.
While the pain is commonly associated with the levator scapula muscle, it’s not always the root of the problem.