Lower Back pain


Three Trigger-Point Solutions

Three Trigger-Point Solutions
I’m now going to talk about three solutions to trigger
points and the pros and cons of each: 1) the handheld
pressuring device, 2) trigger-point massage therapy, and 3) the
self-treatment platform

 1The Handheld Pressuring Device

you hold the device in your hand, maneuver it to
reach the trigger point (usually in your back), and apply
pressure, typically in an area no larger than a quarter. The
shape of the device gives you some leverage, but you’re using
your muscles to do the work. You move the ball back and
forth across the trigger point, wiggling it a bit to get deeper
.into the muscle
The idea is that after several repeated applications of
,pressure with the device your trigger points will loosen up
.release toxins, and gradually relieve you of pain
The good thing about this solution is that it puts you in
,charge of your own relief. You have the device in your home
where you can use it at your convenience. It’s fairly
economical—a one-time purchase—and can be used as often
.as you need without additional cost
What concerns me with devices like these is that one, they
can be awkward to use, and two, they have the potential to
make your situation worse. Basically, unless you’re using the
device on your legs, you’re asking the same muscles that may
.be experiencing pain to fix the problem
For example, if you have a trigger point in the muscle
behind your shoulder blade, you have to use that same muscle
to maneuver the device and apply pressure to the trigger
point. First of all, it can be a little difficult to get the device
where you want it. Second, you’re contracting the injured
muscle, and a muscle suffering from trigger points certainly

doesn’t need more contraction. It’s like asking a person with a
.sprained ankle to walk himself to the hospital
Using this device on any trigger point in any area of your
back is going to require the same (or nearby) back muscles to
work. If you’re not careful, you could be creating more trigger
points in muscles that are already overworked, shortened, and
One other thing that limits the effectiveness of this device
is that you have to figure out how and where to use it pretty
much on your own. You may have pictures and diagrams that
illustrate how to position the device for proper results, but it’s
up to you to maneuver it exactly. When you can’t even see the
area you’re working on (your back), the margin for error is
.pretty high
Though this device may be helpful for some people, in
some instances, I wouldn’t recommend it, simply because it
.requires you to work the muscles that you’re trying to heal
.Doing both at the same time doesn’t really make sense

2Trigger-Point Massage Therapy

Trigger-point massage can be a very effective therapy. It’s a
form of massage in which the practitioner applies deep
.pressure to isolated areas of your body—your trigger points
First, you’re lying down, resting, while the therapist works
on your trigger points, so you don’t have the problems that
exist with the pressuring device. Your back muscles are as
relaxed as they can be, and the massage therapist commonly
.uses his elbow to apply vertical pressure on each trigger point
.Trigger-point massage is different than regular massage
Instead of implementing longer, sloping movements that
lightly pressure the length of your muscles, the therapist will
apply targeted, firm, and sustained pressure (about 7–10
seconds) directly on the trigger point. At first, this probably
won’t feel very good. The trigger point is painful, and

—pressure will activate that pain—as well as release toxins
.both of which can be uncomfortable
,However, if proper pressure is applied on a regular basis
eventually the trigger points will relax and release, and your
pain will go away. The pressure physically forces blood
circulation into the trigger-point area, giving the muscle cells
in the trigger point the oxygen and fuel needed to activate the
.relaxation mechanism
Trigger-point massage is a great solution. The only
drawbacks are that it can get very expensive and can take up a
considerable amount of your time. One treatment isn’t going
to do the trick. You need to go back several times to
completely heal the trigger points—often several times a
week—and since this type of specialty massage typically costs
.$60–$100 per hour, it can add up in a hurry
,The number of visits it takes can depend on many things
including how long you’ve had the trigger point, how many
you have, how effective the treatment is, and how consistently
you receive the treatment. However, there are other solutions
that work just as well, are actually more convenient, and cost
.much less

  3Trigger-Point Self-Treatment Platform

The most economical and effective method I’ve found for
treating trigger points is to use a self-treatment platform. You
use this treatment approach by lying down on a platform that
.has a number of soft, rubber-tipped pressure bumps on it
You configure this platform to match the trigger points on
your back. For example, if you have a trigger point just under
your right shoulder blade, you place a pressure bump on the
platform in the position where your right shoulder will be
.when you lie down
The idea is not to apply pressure to every part of your
back, but only to the parts that have trigger points. You

position the rubber-tipped pressure bumps where you need
.them and then lie down on top of them. Gravity takes over
Because the platform comes with pressure providers of
.different heights, you can choose the intensity of the pressure
Shorter providers give lighter pressure; longer ones, more
intense pressure. This allows you to configure the platform to
mirror the location and severity of the trigger points in your
,There are several advantages to this sort of device. First
you’re not requiring sore, irritated muscles to work harder in
an effort to gain relief. Second, you’re investing once in a
device you can use for the rest of your life, so you’re saving a
significant amount of money. Third, you’re putting yourself
in charge of your relief, which means you can use the device
,when it’s most convenient for you, and as often as you need
.without a bunch of hassles
Finally, it’s the sort of solution that gives you immediate
,feedback. When you lie on a trigger point, you’ll know it
because of the sour, numb, or slightly painful reaction in the
muscle. If you don’t feel that reaction, you can adjust your
position on the platform or adjust the pressure providers to a
location that will be more effective. It’s a very intuitive
.process that’s easy to perform