While it may not have been known at the time, results of research have pointed to the presence of Trigger Points since 1843. The 1930’s saw the introduction of the first “trigger point manual” and referred pain but it wasn’t until 1983 that Travell and Simons’ Myofascial Pain and dysfunction was first published and is now regarded as the ‘Bible’ of Trigger Points.
While there are many classifications of Trigger Points, generally we look for a few signs to indicate their presence:
- Palpable taut band
- Exquisite spot tenderness of a nodule in a taut band.
- Recognition of current pain complaint by pressure on the tender nodule.
- Painful limit to full stretch of affected muscle.
- Local twitch response.
Trigger Point Therapy
Trigger point therapy, which is manual pressure created with various body parts such as thumb, fingers and elbow. It may be painful in applying pressure to the area and therefore the therapist will work with the client to help determine what level of pressure the client can handle. The client can take slightly deeper than normal breaths to help the area to relax. The pressure is maintained until pain dissipates or becomes minimal. Referred pain may result in an often predictable pattern.
Some other techniques used by Myotherapists to release Trigger Points include:
- Myofascial Dry Needling
- PNF/MET Stretching
- Stripping massage techniques
- Direct & Indirect Myofascial release