Everyone suffers from some type of pain; it’s a natural part of who we are and how our body works. Although pain is unpleasant, it’s a normal, healthy function that we all experience and is crucial for our overall wellbeing. But what is pain and why do we get it?
Pain is an unpleasant feeling caused by a damaging or threatening stimuli. All pain is subjectively different, depending on the individual experiencing it. There are many different ways in which pain can present; dull, sharp, aching, throbbing, burning, diffuse, referred or local. Although the feeling of pain can vary in intensity, the stimulus (or cause) is a physical or emotional issue that must be managed.
Pain can present in many different ways and your muscles, fascia, joints, ligaments and bones can all play a role in its cause and effect. Whilst pain can be felt strongly in a particular area of the body, it doesn’t necessarily correlate with the source of the pain – in other words, the source and cause of pain is often located in a different area of the body to where it is felt. This type of pain is described as referred or reflective pain.
Myofacial trigger points, more commonly known as trigger sites or muscle knots, are one of the more significant causes of referred pain. Essentially, a trigger point is an irritated point in muscle tissue or fascia that is not caused by local trauma. They may be found as a small nodule or band in the muscle, which upon palpation can reproduce the feeling of pain.
The up-side to all of this is the fact that soft tissue, (muscle) pain, is more often than not treatable. I work daily treating and helping people recover from pain. There are a range of techniques I use that work to help deactivate painful trigger sites, and most importantly leave you feeling free of pain and dysfunction.
If this article resonates with you, and pain is something you often experience, seek help from a healthcare professional.