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Muscle dysfunctions are muscle control problems that cause skeletal muscles to contract abnormally and resist movements that will stretch them. These dysfunctions can go undiagnosed since there is nothing structurally wrong with the muscle; only the function is impaired.
Despite the lack of true tissue damage, these dysfunctions can be the source of very significant pain and limitation causing stress on joints and other structures. The specialists at the Center for Pain Resolution can identify and treat this type of pain.
Strain and Counterstrain - The therapist identifies the muscle in dysfunction, then treats it through a very specific positioning that "shuts down" the dysfunction and returns the muscle to a normal state. After a gentle 90 second hold, the muscle is slowly returned to neutral and rechecked for its ability to lengthen normally.
Contract-Relax Stretching - The therapist has the patient gently contract the dysfunctional muscle at the end of its non-painful range of motion, then uses the relaxation effect after the contraction to gently stretch the muscle further. This process is repeated several times to "ease" the muscle further into its restricted range of motion. This treatment promotes independence since it can often be performed at home.
Total Motion Release - The therapist determines where the greatest muscle dysfunctions are through specific movement testing. Exercises targeted to reduce these dysfunctions are performed and immediate changes in movement and pain are noted. The patient is then taught to self-assess and self-treat their dysfunctions in the same way. This treatment can be thought of as performing active Strain and Counterstrain, and is therefore an excellent treatment to encourage patient independence.
Anyone experiencing pain or limitation in movement could have a muscle dysfunction. An important point about this particular problem is that patients often report additional pain in the muscles on the opposite side of the dysfunction. This occurs because the opposing muscles fatigue in an attempt to fight the muscle dysfunction during normal activities. Due to this mechanism, this problem can be the source of unresolved pain or pain spreading to other areas of the body.
Contact the Center for Pain Resolution to learn more about how our therapists can help you manage pain. Call 262-780-0707 or 888-7800-8778.