Acupuncture and Pain
Joint pain results from inflammation and can be incapacitating. The basic range of motion of any joint is affected when the joint is inflamed. Regional nerve endings fire and cause the sufferer to avoid movements that could cause more damage. This guarding response, though natural, has the overall effect of limiting the normal joint range of motion, forcing other muscles and joints to compensate. Inhibited joints and connected muscles become weak and unstable. An acupuncturist can assess which joints and muscles are inflamed and inhibited, and she uses massage and other alternative medicine techniques to help.
Back pain stemming from vertebral joints, for instance, can limit a person’s twisting movements. Everyday activities such as getting into and out of a car can be extremely painful when back joints suffer inflammation. Similarly, hip pain arising from inflammation of the pelvic joints will limit standing and sitting, making activities like rising from the couch feel impossible. When joints in the shoulder suffer inflammation, it may be challenging to move the arms overhead, making activities such as reaching to an upper shelf tough. Inflammation of wrist joints results in point tenderness at the wrist carpal bones that will limit wrist flexion and extension, making typing or writing problematic. TMJ disorders occur with irritation of the joints of the mouth and jaw, making it uncomfortable to talk and eat. Joint pain affects work and play, and many people seek remedies that help, but that does not have adverse side effects.
Massage performed by an acupuncturist is therapeutic and directed to the source of pain. For instance, a licensed acupuncturist will palpate or feel the back to detect regions of irritated spinal joints and surrounding muscles. Palpation will help her know where to apply massage and how to proceed to soothe the area safely. A knowledgeable practitioner will know to assess additional connected regions as well to improve healing response.
For instance, lower lumbar back pain will refer to the feet and calves, so your acupuncturist may apply techniques there, as well. Hip joint pain and inflammation frequently involve all sides of the leg. The anterior quadriceps region is susceptible to tightness from sitting, the lateral TFL muscles, and the posterior hamstring region suffers inhabitation pain. Trigger point massage and gentle movement of these regions can help to reduce pain and restore normal range of motion.
Cervical neck pain frequently presents with shoulder problems; tightness and guarding of the surrounding neck and arm ligaments and muscles compound the irritation. Acupuncture massage to connected areas will help to alleviate inflammation and pain regionally as well as locally.
Cupping and other massage techniques used by acupuncturists quicken healing and helps get to the source of the problem. If you’re ready for more information and to schedule an appointment, call an acupuncturist in Chapel Hill, NC today.
Thanks to Acupractic Natural Healing Center and Acupuncture for their insight into acupuncture and joint pain.