How Trigger Point Injections Target Your Muscle Pain

How Trigger Point Injections Target Your Muscle Pain

About 10% of the US population suffers from chronic disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Musculoskeletal disorders — including myofascial pain and fibromyalgia — are one of the main causes of disability in women and men. 

Chronic pain from musculoskeletal disorders can take over your life, making it difficult for you to get through your normal routines, relax, or even enjoy your day. If you struggle with chronic muscle pain, or if you want to reduce or eliminate your use of pain medications, trigger point injections could be an option for you. 

At Spectrum Pain Clinics in Jackson and Cordova, Tennessee, our pain experts recommend trigger point injections for conditions such as:

Here’s how this simple treatment could give you the long-term relief you’ve been seeking.

Trigger points are knots 

Trigger points are knots in your muscles that you can feel underneath your skin. The knots form from tension or as a result of an injury. The trigger points themselves are painful, particularly when you press on them.

The knots shorten the muscle, which can make the muscle ache, too. The affected muscle might also lose its range of motion, which causes you to rely more on other parts of your body. That compensation causes more tension, leading to imbalances and possibly more trigger points. 

The pain from trigger points can also radiate to other parts of your body, a condition known as referred pain. Sometimes your entire body hurts from referred trigger point pain.

Trigger point injections go to the source 

Unlike oral medications, trigger point injections target the source of your pain and work to help your body heal. Your pain specialist administers the injections directly into your trigger points. You either lie down or sit up while your doctor gently palpates your skin with your guidance to locate each trigger point.

Trigger point injections consist of a simple mixture of saline, anesthetics, and steroids. The anesthetics numb the pain, and the steroids subdue the inflammation that accompanies most injuries and contributes to chronic pain. 

The needles themselves are part of the therapy. The needle helps to break up the shortened, tensed muscle fibers in the trigger point. Your doctor selects the needle size based on the size of the muscle knot. 

The needle itself is so effective at breaking up trigger points that if you’re allergic to anesthetics or steroids, your pain expert can use a dry-needle technique — inserting a needle without medication and moving it up and down in the area. The motion increases blood flow to the trigger point and causes a twitch reaction in the inflamed nerve that calms down the muscle.

Trigger point injections work quickly

You may undergo multiple trigger point injections during one session, and the treatment only takes a few minutes. Although you may be sore at the injection site, you should notice an improvement in your pain level right after your trigger point injections. 

You should avoid strenuous activity for a few days after your trigger point injections, but we encourage you to flex and stretch your muscles and otherwise go about your normal routine. Within days to weeks, you should continue to feel more pain relief, which can last for months at a time. 

Find out how trigger point injections at Spectrum Pain Clinics take direct aim at your muscle pain. Contact our team today by calling the office nearest you or using our online appointment request tool.

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