Pain: Is it a Muscle, is it a Pinched Nerve, or is it Something out of Place?

My patients are always asking me: what is wrong with me, why do I have pain? (Except, of course, the practitioners, who want to tell me what is wrong with them). Most of the time, especially for long-lasting pain, pain comes from a combination of factors.

Muscles are designed to fire, to activate. Great when you need them, useless when the muscle stays turned on, and just tightens up. When you have pain, the bigger muscles tend to get too tight, the smaller stabilizing muscles tend to get weak. You may want to blame the muscle, but there is usually something underneath that.

Joints can get out of place. Our more modern chiropractic view sees the problem more as the joints being “stuck” and unable to move freely. This filter, this view of “stuckness,” is both more accurate, and it also empowers you, the patient. If something is stuck, we will try to both unlock it, and teach you how to get that area moving.

Nerves are the source of pain. Sensory nerves send pain and other signals from the local area, back up to the brain. The classic pinched nerve, sending shooting pain down your leg, or into your arm, is just one of many things that can go wrong with nerves. Pain, especially chronic pain, can make the nerves too sensitive. A sensitized nerve becomes inflamed and irritated, and often stays that way. We are excited about new methods that help us help you quiet your nerves. Even better, these are methods we can teach you to use at home.

What is YAP? YAP, or Yank Away Pain, is a new model of how to quiet irritated nerves. Irritated nerves generally don’t like to be pressed on or rubbed. Rolfing, shiatsu, deep tissue, Graston technique, ART- all share the approach of deep pressure. This can be great for the right tissues. This may not be the right treatment for nerves. Is there another more effective approach? In YAP, we lift and wiggle the nerves. We follow the line of the nerves, find where the nerve path is adhered and irritated, and YAP it. When it works, the area is immediately less tender. We then show you how to use similar methods at home, to keep the nerves quieted down.

What can help chronic pain? Break the vicious cycle. Working together, we quiet the nerves, and help keep them happy. Activate the right muscles, and help relax the noisy ones. We help get your joints moving better. Last but not least, can you learn to quit hurting yourself, through bad movement habits, overuse, or the wrong exercises? When we break the pain cycle, your body has a chance to heal.

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