Myofascial Pain Syndrome (Muscle Pain): Causes, Symptoms & Treatments

Suffering from pain of any type can be difficult to handle. Sometimes the pain may be minor and can be worked through, while other times it can debilitating and hard to handle. One chronic condition that involves muscle pain that many deal with is called Myofascial pain syndrome. This involves inflammation that is in the soft tissues of the body and cause pain in different areas. It could involve one particular muscular area or a group of muscles causing pain. Here are a few things you should know if you’re dealing with muscle pain or if you think you’re dealing with myofascial pain.

Causes and Symptoms

The causes of myofascial pain can be due to an injury or strain of a muscle in the body. It could be due to repetitive motions that injury the muscle groups being used, an excessive strain that is put on the muscle, tendon or even ligaments, or it can be due to inactivity in a group of muscles. This could be due to having an injury to your arm and not being able to move it due to the cast or sling you’re having to wear.

This type of muscle pain provides “trigger” points that are the symptom of the problem. It can produce pain in these specific areas, or it can also produce other problems such as depression, behavioral problems, or fatigue due to the pain the patient is in.

When you’re being examined for myofascial pain, you may have two types of trigger points, active or latent. The active trigger point is very tender when manipulated whereas the latent trigger point can cause problems but isn’t causing them at the time. It is basically lying in wait to cause problems with pain.

Treatment Options

There are several options available to treat this type of muscle pain depending on what you’re dealing with at the time. You can opt for massage therapy to help reduce the trigger points and work out the kinks in the muscles. There’s physical therapy to help you gain movement back in those muscles if you’ve dealt with an injury that restricted your movement. You may also find that trigger point injection therapy works well for you. This is where the doctor will inject either anesthetic, saline, or corticosteroids into the trigger point and make it dormant so that it doesn’t cause pain any more.

One other method that may be used is the “spray and stretch” method. This is where the trigger point is sprayed with a cooling type spray and then it is slowly stretched out.

You can also take anti-inflammatory medications to assist with the pain as well.

Clavicle Fracture (Broken Collarbone): Causes, Symptoms & Treatments

It takes a lot to break a bone in the body and the collarbone is no different. A collarbone fracture can be quite painful and it takes a lot of force, in general, to break the bone that is one of the major ones in your shoulder area. Learning what the causes, symptoms and treatment options for a clavicle fracture can help you to understand what will happen if this injury occurs to you or your loved one.

Causes and Symptoms

How do you break your collarbone? Typically, the clavicle fracture is caused by a direct hit to the bone such as in sports like football, hockey, or even wrestling. It may also happen during a bad fall or car accident. You’ll find that in most cases those who suffer from this type of fracture most are males between the ages of 13 and 20.

The symptoms of a clavicle fracture vary in intensity and type. Most times the person suffering with this injury will find immediate pain in the affected area, there will be a grinding noise when the arm is moved or tried to be lifted, and an inability to lift the arm because of the pain you have.

Treatment Options

Most collarbone fractures will heal themselves with time. In some cases, however, surgery is needed to repair the injury before the patient can go home. In cases where surgery is needed, you will be in a sling for around six weeks after surgery. Most cases are simply treated with a certain type of sling to keep the bone in place and refrain the patient from moving the arm too much until the fracture is healed. The sling is usually worn for a length of three to four weeks. The doctor may suggest you start doing some small movements and exercises immediately to help with the healing process. Strengthening exercises will come in later during the process so that you do not reinjure the shoulder area before it has had a chance to heal.

For those who are dealing with huge amounts of pain, over the counter remedies typically help reduce it long enough to relax and get some rest. Your doctor may prescribe something before you leave to start with to help get through the first few days.

If your collarbone fracture is severe and your younger in age, then surgery may be recommended. If not, then you will most likely leave the hospital with a sling to immobilize the bone and help you to recover.

Toddler’s Pigeon Toed: Causes & Treatment Options

As a child develops and starts to walk you may notice what some call pigeon toed waking or intoeing. These two words are used to describe the inward turn of your child’s foot when they are walking along or maybe even your own foot issues you might deal with. As a toddler is growing their body is constantly changing and these problems you notice now may not be an issue in a few months or years to come. How can you know if the intoeing problem you’re seeing with your child is a problem that needs further attention? Here is a look at the causes of pigeon toed walking and what you can do about it if your child needs further observation.

Causes of Intoeing And Varying Treatment Options

There are three main causes of pigeon toed walking. One is when the metatarsus adductus in the foot has a curve inward instead of being straight as it should be. In most cases this is a flexible tendon and can be easily fixed wearing braces or doing stretches to straighten it back out. In extreme cases surgery may be needed.

The intoeing can also be caused due to a twisting of the tibia bone. This will come from the knee area and it causes the shin to be twisted as well, thus making your child walk pigeon toed. This type of intoeing is most commonly seen in children and toddlers as they are beginning to learn to walk. On most scenarios, this fixes itself as your child grows and begins walking more and more. Once the leg bone has stopped growing, if your child is still walking in this manner then surgery may be necessary to fix the twisting of the bone.

Between the ages of 2 and 4 years old the child may start to show intoeing that is coming from a problem in the hip area. The femoral anteversion can have a twist in the upper thigh area causing the walking problems. Once this problem has shown up they typically will grow out of it by the time they are nearing 8 years of age. If not, then a doctor should be consulted to see if there are underlying issues that need to be addressed further.

If your child starts showing signs of this as they are beginning to walk, then in most cases you can let them continue to grow and walk. They will most likely straighten their feet and legs as they learn to walk more. However, if this shows up after the age of three or doesn’t seem to be getting better, it’s time to consult your doctor. They can do an examination to see what needs to be done and what course of treatment to follow.

Groin Pain: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

In most cases, when you move your body does so without any pain or problems from areas that move you on a regular basis. What happens when you start to feel pain in your groin area? Groin pain can be caused from a variety of different ailments or groin injury issues. Here is a look at a few of the causes of groin pain, the symptoms you should look for and the treatment options you have available should suffer from a groin injury.

Causes of Groin Pain

Pain in the groin area can be caused by a multitude of possibilities. You could have injured the region during a sports activity, when you were working or even in an accident in your vehicle. You can also injure the area from overuse, by pulling a muscle, or from a direct injury such as stabbing to the area or a fall. If your leg turns in an abnormal direction due to twisting the leg or falling, this can also cause pain and injury to the area.

Other causes of pain in the groin region include items such as arthritis or bursitis in the joints.

Symptoms of Groin Injury

If you’ve pulled a muscle or have groin pain, here are a few symptoms to watch out for:

  • Pain or tender areas on the inside of your thigh or in the groin itself
  • You may feel pain when you try to put your legs together
  • Pain can occur when you raise your knee up
  • If you are in the middle of the injury occurring, you may hear a snapping or popping noise when you twist your muscles or pull them

Treatment Options for Groin Injury or Pain

In most situations with an injury to the groin, the best thing you can do is get plenty of rest. If you’ve pulled a muscle or have injured it in a car accident, it is best to rest and protect your injury for at least two weeks. Be sure you do not do any strenuous activities that could reinjure or worsen the problem while it is healing. You can also use ice to help reduce any inflammation or swelling of the injury as well. Also, be sure to wear supportive undergarments during this time to help protect your groin and help hold everything in place so it will be easier to heal.

Once you’ve gotten plenty of rest and allowed the groin injury to heal, you can start to do strengthening and stretching exercises slowly to help bring your groin back to its normal working order. Make sure you talk to your doctor before starting these to ensure you do not reinjure yourself.

Toe Walking in Children: Symptoms, Causes and Management

Somewhere around the ages of 12-14 months old your children start to walk. While in most cases children walk flat on their feet, some children start walking on their tip toes instead of flat feet. Generally, this will disappear after about three months or so of learning to walk. Usually at the latest it is by the age of three that they will put their feet flat on the ground to walk. However, there are some cases where children have toe walking as their normal walk and they never put their feet flat on the ground. They will walk either on the ball of their feet or straight up on their tip toe areas.

Causes of Idiopathic Toe Walking

There are many different aspects that can be the cause of toe walking. Some children with cerebral palsy tend to walk on their toes or the ball of their foot. Muscular dystrophy is another common cause of the tip toe walk pattern. Even some children with autism have been known to walk this way but most times that is not the case.

Features of this to watch out for include things such as your children walking on only the tip toe areas or the balls of their feet, they walk with straight knees, and there is often a history of this type of walking in the family. Children with toe walking can typically keep up with other kids their age even when just balancing on their toes. You will notice they also walk this way on both feet, not just one or the other. They also can stand still with both feet on the ground flat but when they began to walk they go back up on their toes.

Management of the Symptoms and Condition

If your child is still toe walking after two years old, it is time to consult your physician. There are exercises you can do at home with your child to help strengthen those muscles and help them walk flat on their feet. You can work with them on calf-stretch exercises, Achilles tendon stretches, and also sit to stand exercises to help them stretch those muscles and get them to working properly.

Shoes are another consideration in the treatment and management of toe walking. While shoes alone will not correct the issue, it can help them to have the support they need to bring their foot down farther than they do when barefoot. Make sure that the shoes your child has includes a high cut shoe that includes a wide sole, firm heel of the shoe, and rigid support.

Common Cause of Overuse Injuries: Prevention & Treatment

Sports are a great way to keep active and healthy throughout your entire life. One concern with playing a variety sports are the common overuse injuries or even stress fractures. There are many different injuries that can come about from using the same muscles over and over, but there are ways to prevent them as well. Take a look at some of the most common overuse injuries and how you can avoid or treat them if you fall victim.

Going Farther Than You Actually Can

When it comes to a new exercise program or sports adventure, you must be realistic on what you are capable of handling. Most common injuries come about due to the inability to admit you can only go so far with your new activity. Start slow and make sure to take your time in pushing yourself. If you push yourself too far too fast you can end up with stress fractures or pulled muscles and ligaments.

Know The Correct Form

When you are learning a new sport or exercise, it is important that you use the correct form at all times. Work with a professional or seasoned trainer in the specific sport you’re trying to learn. This will help you to learn the correct form before you start making bad habits in the way you play or perform the move. Bad form can cause a variety of overuse injuries in your body when you do not learn the right way to perform the sport or move beforehand.

Preventing and Treating These Injuries

To treat an overuse injury, you want to make sure to start cutting back on the practice during your time of being injured. Be sure to warm-up properly during every exercise or workout. Ice down the injury so that you can help to reduce any inflammation that may be present and be sure to get plenty of rest. You may also find that anti-inflammatory medications will help during treatment as well.

To prevent these common overuse injuries from happening in the first place, be sure you learn the proper form before you start an exercise or program. Make sure your shoes are worn in but also offer the proper support for the activity you’re about to do. Remember you do not have to be the fastest at the program right away. Learn the proper technique from the get go and take it easy to ensure you have it right. All of these tips can help you to prevent injures such as stress fractures from happening to you and taking you out of the game.

Internal Tibial Torsion: Symptoms & Treatments

Intoeing, or internal rotation of tibia, can be found in early childhood. This is typically done when your child first starts walking. It will be noticed by a turn of your child’s feet towards each other instead of in the straight line as they generally are. Learning what internal tibial torsion is and how it is treated can help you to understand what the next steps are when your child seems to display symptoms of this condition.

What is this condition?

This condition centers around the internal rotation of the tibia bone causing the toes and foot to turn inward towards the other foot. Typically, this is first observed when your toddler starts to walk. In most cases, the condition corrects itself by the time the child is around 4 years old but in other cases intervention is needed.

Symptoms and Treatment Options

There is usually no pain that comes along with this problem but parents seem to notice and report that their children fall more than what is considered normal. They seem to be tripping over their own feet when trying to walk in most cases.

Treatment options vary depending on the severity and the age of the child. As mentioned above, internal tibial torsion typically corrects itself by the time the child reaches age four. In more severe cases, if the condition has not corrected by the age of 9 or 10 years old, then they will consider surgery to correct the problem. That is because by this age, it is generally considered that it will not get better and they want to give your child the best possible future with walking correctly. Other times braces or physical therapy intervention has also been used.

The prognosis with internal rotation of tibia is usually a very good one. Your child will typically grow out of the condition anywhere between three and six years of age. There’s not any pain associated with it and the only symptoms you may notice is more falling down or tripping when walking.

Your child’s doctor can diagnosis this with measurements of the legs, physical exam and in some cases x-rays to determine the rotation. This is not a condition that has to be scary or frightening to you as the parent. Your child can still learn to walk with a normal gait and if it isn’t corrected on its own, there are other interventions that can help.

Common Childhood Orthopedic Conditions

When it comes to your child’s growth, you may notice things from time-to-time that don’t seem quite as they should. Those could include things such as their speech, you may notice they seem to have flatfeet, or even that they suffer from knock-knees. While most often times you’ll find your children grow out of some of these concerns you have, others may not grow out of them and need assistance in handling the situation. Here are some common conditions children deal with of an orthopedic nature.

Walking on Their Toes

Most times you’ll find your toddler that is learning to walk with walk on their toes. As they get stronger and walk more consistently, this should disappear. However, if it does not and your child is over age 3, they need to see a doctor about this condition. This can cause harm to their muscles later in life if it is not dealt with at an early age.

Flatfeet That Stay

Typically, babies are born with their feet flat and develop their arches later on in life. However, there are some children who never get an arch and they still have flat feet later on. This may appear that they have weakness in their ankles due to the way their foot appears when they are standing straight up. Doctors say that most times this is not a cause for concern but in those cases where pain is involved, they may prescribe arch supports to assist in reducing the discomfort and help the foot to develop correctly.

Knock-Knees

While a lot of children do show a slight tendency towards the knock-knee condition, more often they not it is something they grow out of. However, if they do not grow out of it or one side is more pronounced than the other, you should seek medical assistance. Such items as braces or inserts in the shoes can help your child’s legs start to straighten out and reduce any pain they may be having.

Other conditions that may require a doctor’s visit include pigeon toes or children who seem to have the bowing out of their legs. In most cases all of these conditions are something your children will grow out of without any intervention. In the cases where you do need to seek intervention, the orthopedic specialists can assist you in making sure your child is comfortable and growing at the pace they should be.

A Guide to Self-Massage for Tendonitis Sufferers

When it comes to tendonitis, it can be very painful for those who suffer with it. There are a variety of treatment options out there, but one stands out as a way you can help to heal yourself and get through the painful days you may have. Self-massage techniques can help you to relieve the pain and also to accelerate your healing. Take a look at this guide to deep friction massage techniques you can do on yourself at home or wherever you may be.

What is Deep Friction Massage?

This technique is basically “scrubbing” the tendon fibers and in most cases helps to heal the tendons themselves. In essence it doesn’t have to be a deep, deep massage but just one that can help to stimulate the natural healing process your body can do on its own. This method is one that is safe for you to utilize because it does not add chemicals to your body and it is a free method to try out to see if it can work for you.

How to Perform Friction Massage

This is different from a typical massage and it’s important that you learn the proper technique to use. You are going to use gentle rubbing motions over the spot of tendonitis and make sure that it runs perpendicular to the tendon itself. You want to rub gently at the point where you find the most tenderness. After a couple minutes of rubbing the sensitivity shall subside and it will not be as tender. Although it will subside after a few minutes, do remember you are rubbing an active sore site so it will have some pain as well. This motion should be similar to strumming your guitar.

After this has been done you will want to ice the spot you have massaged. Make sure you only put the bare ice on the spot for about a minute or two. This will help you to reduce inflammation as well. You should start to feel relief from this massage therapy technique very soon after you have done this treatment.

Make sure you do this once a day and be sure to put the ice on afterwards. This may not work for everyone but if you are suffering with tendonitis, it is sure worth a try. This should take you less than six minutes to do and you can repeat this daily.

5 Tips To Reduce Neck Pain

Neck pain could be caused by a number of reasons. Sports-related overuse injury could result in pain without proper icing and rest; minor car accidents can cause whiplash and strains due to the sudden braking of the car. It could also be caused by daily activities such as prolonged periods of looking down into the phone, stretching forward to the computer screen or bad sitting posture in the office. After some time, the neck muscles would stiffen up and feel sore.

It is important to adopt methods that will not worsen the condition or the shoulders and back may be affected as well. Here are a few simple lifestyle changes you can make to reduce neck pain and prevent from aggravating it.

  • Sleep on the back

 The sleeping position is crucial when dealing with neck pain. People who sleep on their stomachs usually have more complains about neck and back pain. Sleeping on the back with a pillow that is not too thick – just enough to keep the head level with the body – would be most ideal for people suffering from neck pain.

  • Get the right pillow

To avoid morning stiff necks, side sleepers should get a moderately soft pillow that will not tilt the head towards the body. The pillow should also reach down to the shoulders to support the neck. If you have to sleep facedown, place a thin pillow under the stomach to prevent aches. Otherwise, strategically placing a few pillows at your sides would stop you from rolling over in your sleep. There are contoured and cervical pillows designed to give better support to the neck if sleeping on the back does not relief the pain.

  • Bring up the computer screen to eye level

Spending long sedentary hours at the computer could be damaging for the physique, especially when you have to look down into the screen. Use a laptop stand to prop it up to eye level and keep a comfortable distance away from you so that you do not have to strain your neck forward or downward.

  • Do neck and shoulder exercises

Take intervals to stand up and stretch or take a walk to prevent muscles from getting stiff. Doing the chin tuck and neck rotations regularly would strengthen the neck muscles and keep the head aligned with the shoulders.

  • Spread out the weight

Often times, carrying a heavy bag on one shoulder could lead to neck pain. Switch to a backpack with wide straps to even out the weight across the shoulders and prevent from asserting the neck to assist in lifting the load.