Muscle pain is incredibly common. It is pain that originates and is experienced in any of the muscles in the body and can affect multiple muscles at any one time. In addition to the muscles themselves, the discomfort that stems from them can also affect the ligaments, tendons, and soft tissues that connect the muscles, bones, and organs.
Exactly how severely you are affected by muscle pain can differ between individuals, but for some, it can extremely debilitating, significantly impacting your quality of life. This is especially true if your discomfort is ongoing. Fortunately, chiropractic care can help. Here’s what you need to know about muscle pain and how appointments with a chiropractor can alleviate your discomfort.
Muscle pain can vary in both intensity and cause. Muscle pain can typically be divided into two different types. These are localized muscle pain and systemic muscle pain.
As you might expect, localized muscle pain tends to affect just a few muscles or a small area of your body. In most instances, episodes of localized muscle pain are the result of stress, tension, overuse, or minor injury. In many cases, localized muscle pain goes away fairly quickly with the right treatment.
Unfortunately, systemic muscle pain is more complicated. It refers to muscle pain experienced throughout your body, often affecting multiple areas at once. Systemic muscle pain tends to occur as a result of a chronic illness, an infection, or as a side effect of taking a specific medication. For example, some of the most common causes of systemic muscle pain include:
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)
Although pain medications can be very helpful in alleviating the discomfort of muscle pain, many patients are understandably keen to avoid becoming reliant on drugs, especially if the underlying cause of their pain is a chronic health problem that will not be resolved easily or quickly.
Fortunately, chiropractors have several different techniques that they can use to help reduce pain and inflammation in your muscles, and in the event that you have suffered an injury to the muscle itself, speed up the rate at which it heals. These include the following:
Adjustments are the most well-known chiropractic modality. They involve your chiropractor manually manipulating your spine in order to realign it, correcting muscle imbalances, and minimizing strain that is placed onto the joints. This can also reduce pressure on the nervous system, enabling all of your body systems to function more effectively.
Trigger point therapy is a form of soft tissue therapy where your chiropractor applies pressure to specific areas of the body that have been identified as ‘trigger points’. Trigger points are usually the point of the muscle where the most discomfort is emanating from.
Hot and cold therapy has been proven to be particularly effective at reducing pain and inflammation. Cold constricts blood vessels, slowing down blood flow, and counteracting inflammation. Meanwhile, heat can be used to enhance blood flow, increased the amount of oxygen reaching the muscles which can speed up healing, and reduce stiffness and pain.
Ultrasound therapy is not dissimilar to diagnostic ultrasound, but rather than looking for abnormalities, the technique will cause therapeutic sound waves to pass into the muscles which creates warmth which increases blood flow and stimulates healing.
If you are suffering from muscle pain and you would like more information about how chiropractic treatment can alleviate your discomfort, please contact our chiropractic team in North Charleston, SC to schedule a consultation.