Worked overtime at the office?
Overdid it at the gym?
Woke up stiff this morning?
Sore/stiff muscles are normal. One can usually return to normal activities after a day or two of rest. However, if you have recurring muscle pain especially in the neck or back area you may have a trigger point.
What is a Trigger Point?
Trigger points are muscle fibers that can’t relax. One can usually locate them by pressing on the muscle fibers with your fingers as trigger points often feel denser and tighter (or rope-like) compared to the rest of the body. Daniel J. Leizman, MD, a specialist in Cleveland Clinic’s Department of Pain Management, noted that trigger points are predominantly in the trapezius muscle. The trapezius muscle stretches from the base of the skull, down to the middle of the back and to the shoulder. Trigger points in the trapezius muscle are responsible for most tension headaches.
Inflammation or injury to any of the 14 nerves or 8 (pairs) of neck joints can cause neck pain. Approximately 70 percent of 65-year-olds may have symptomatic arthritis in one or more joints in their neck.
Did you know? The neck and shoulder are connected by multiple nerve pathways. At times, the brain can’t always trace pain back to the source. Example, a pain in the neck can actually be caused by a trigger point in the shoulder. This is known as referred pain.