MYOFASCIAL RELEASE: DOES IT WORK?
Many of us know that Physical Therapy is very helpful when it comes to recovering from injuries brought on by accidents or illnesses. But few of us know that there are certain specialties within that scope.
Ever heard of Myofascial Release? Some may also use MFR for easier recall, this type of Physical Therapy is a specialized stretching technique to treat patients with soft tissue problem or what we call Myofascial pain syndrome. This syndrome is a chronic pain disorder caused by the tightness and sensitivity in your myofascial tissues. You should know that these tissues surround and support your muscled all throughout your body. If you feel pain in specific points of your body, those are what you call “Trigger points” and they originate from your myofascial tissues.
This is where the Myofascial Release technique comes in, it specifically focuses on pain reduction. MFR technique is often used broadly over muscle and tissue areas rather than at single areas since it can be a challenge as well to fully verify if it is truly the trigger point that is responsible for the pain or there’s an underlying reason. Nevertheless, it eases the tension and tightness in the trigger points.
How is it done?
Myofascial Release (MFR) is the stretching of the fascia. Your physical therapist will stretch those muscles and the “stretch” that your PT would feel from your body will be the indicator for them on how much force to use, direction, and how long for them to stretch that particular muscle area.
Your physical therapist will be able to find those sore spots just by feel. They would usually start in small areas. There certain patients who can’t fully pinpoint where it hurts the most, but your PT will. They are trained so well to do so. Some of you might feel scared about this treatment, but for those who have tried, it will say that it’s surprising for them how gentle MFR is. Some patients fall asleep during the session. Many of those who have tried it find it very relaxing- but this is not massage.
The goal is to equalize the muscle tension Remember, unequal muscle tension causes compression of the nerve and muscles, thus pain is felt in those areas.
Who benefits the most?
Myofascial Release is effective in treating patients with:
Chronic back pain, low back pain, thoracic back pain, and back strain
Carpal tunnel syndrome
Dizziness and vertigo
Myofascial pain dysfunction
Jaw and facial pain
Myofascial release not only reduces pain but also has other benefits such as improving your range of motion, reduction of soreness and assists the affected tissue in the recovery process, helps the body relax, MFR improves circulation, and of course, releases tension and stress brought about by the pain.
Now, there we are aware that there are circulating do-it-yourself Myofascial release exercises out there. But you have to know that if you’re a newbie on this type of treatment, it is still the best option to have yourself checked and evaluated by your Licenses Physical Therapy. This is not only for your effective recovery but also for safety. So if you’re suffering from long-term or even short-term pain in a specific body part over and over again, try to consider visiting your Physical Therapist.