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Trigger Point Therapy - Treating a Bulging Disc

Posted by Judith Winer on

 

Piriformis Muscle - Trigger Points & Pain Map

 

The painful symptoms of a bulging disc may often be relieved by treating trigger points in the piriformis gluteus maximus, and rectus abdominis muscles.

The spine is formed in such a way as to allow movement whilst also protecting the spinal cord (the nervous tissue that runs from the brain and down the length of the spinal column).

The spine is made up of 33 vertebrae, mostly separated by rubbery cushions, called intervertebral discs. These jelly-like discs are so on the inside with a tougher exterior (annulus brosus).

When some of the softer inside of a disc extrudes outside the space that
it should normally occupy, you are said to have a bulging disc. This can impact on nearby nerves, causing pain and discomfort.

It may also lead to numbness or weakness in a leg or arm. It is most likely to occur between the 4th and 5th vertebrae in the lower back which bear the impact of most of the weight of the upper body.

What Are the Symptoms of Bulging Disc?

In some cases someone who has a bulging disc may experience no symptoms.

However, in most cases you will experience some discomfort, depending where in the spine it occurs and if the local nerve tissue has been affected.

Where enough disc tissue has protruded out and is touching the spinal nerves nearby, you may feel a shooting pain. This pain would be distributed in the nerve and often on one side of your body.

This “referred” pain can be accompanied by numbness and tingling in the part of the body that is a affected by those nerves.

Where is the Bulging Disc?

If you have a bulging disc in your neck, you will most likely feel intense pain in the shoulder and upper arm. If the bulging disc is in your lower back, you are likely to feel pain in your buttocks, leg and sometimes foot.

You may also experience weakness as the related muscle becomes affected, limiting your ability to hold items or causing you to stumble.

 

 

 Rectus Abdominis Muscle - Trigger Points and Pain Map

 

Who Is Prone to Bulging Disc?

Those between the ages of 30 and 45 may suffer from a bulging disc as a result of a sports injury or from heavy lifting or obesity.

Being male, getting older and a history of back injury all make you more prone to a bulging disc.

In addition those who regularly lift heavy objects, twist and turn their body, are exposed to constant vibration (from driving) or who sit for long periods are more likely to suffer from it.

 

Sciatic Mobilizing Stretches May be Helpful

 

Bulging Disc and Trigger Points

The painful symptoms of a bulging disc may often be relieved by treating trigger points in the piriformis and gluteus maximus, and rectus abdominis muscles.

 

Treatment of Trigger Points in Rectus Abdominis

 

Trigger Points and Holding Patterns

We don't know the exact reason why certain trigger points seem to become active in tandem with other injuries (such as in the case of a bulging disc), but we do know that treating these trigger points can help relieve pain and often help accelerate the healing process.

Many experts believe that these trigger points are part of a holding pattern that the body develops as a response to injury, to promote self-healing. 

Treating Trigger Points

Treating the trigger points themselves is a relatively straightforward process for most trigger point therapists (i.e. any manual therapist who practices trigger point therapy), and in most cases this will provide pain relief.

Treating the trigger points for long term relief and to accelerate recovery, often requires the use of specific treatment sequences combined with the active participation of the client. These include self massage, stretching, and strengthening exercises, as well as other lifestyle changes.

There are a growing number of therapists who practice these techniques frequently and with incredible efficiency. Hopefully you can find one near you. Looking out for NAT certification is always a good first step!

 

Find a Trigger Point Professional in your area

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This trigger point therapy blog is intended to be used for information purposes only and is not intended to be used for medical diagnosis or treatment or to substitute for a medical diagnosis and/or treatment rendered or prescribed by a physician or competent healthcare professional. This information is designed as educational material, but should not be taken as a recommendation for treatment of any particular person or patient. Always consult your physician if you think you need treatment or if you feel unwell. 

 

 

 

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