Muscle Trigger Points (TPs) are painful areas in muscles that cause radiating pain when they are pressed on. The painful point can be felt as a hard knot or tight band in the muscle. TPs can occur in over 400 muscles in your body. You know when you have found one because they are very sensitive to touch.

The radiation of pain when a Muscle Trigger Point is pressed on is what differentiates it from just a tender point, which hurts when pressed but doesn't cause pain to radiate.

Good news! If your pain does radiate when pressed on it will likely respond well to treatment.

Click here for a list of all the pain relief products that I use, or that I recommend to patients,family and friends.

What Causes Muscle Trigger Points?

Trigger Points are caused by trauma, like sports injuries, falls, car accidents, sudden twisting or turning, excessive exercise; or by overuse of a certain muscle or group of muscles.

Anything that puts unhealthy stress on muscles, like too much sitting, exercise, bending, lifting, uncomfortable chairs, poor posture, or holding a telephone between your ear and shoulder, can lead to Trigger Points.

If you’ve had a Trigger Point longer than a few weeks, the muscle it is in will start to lose normal range of motion and will stiffen. Other muscles and joints near it will also stiffen.

Research has found that poor nutrition is a contributing cause in developing Trigger Points. Therefore adding foods high in anti-oxidants, such as fruits and vegetables, to your diet will help prevent this problem from developing.

Are MuscleTrigger Points really a big deal?

They were a big deal for President John F Kennedy.

I first became aware of how widespread trigger points are in 1983, when I read Dr. Janet Travell’s textbook on trigger points.

Dr. Travell was President John F Kennedy’s personal doctor. She was given the position of White House Physician after her remarkable success treating President Kennedy’s terrible back pain. He had been in such debilitating pain that he thought he may have to end his political career before ever running for president.

President Kennedy is just one example of life changing relief from the pain of Trigger Points.

Doctor Travell’s research has shown that muscle trigger points are the primary cause of pain 75% of the time and cause part of almost every pain problem.

The vast majority of patients coming into my clinic with pain also had Trigger Points.

I believe the same is true for you if you suffer with muscle or joint pain. You probably have these painful points.

Muscle Trigger Points are a big deal because of all the symptoms they can cause:





•Neck pain

•Jaw pain




•Low Back Pain

•Tennis Elbow

•Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

•Eyelid droop or twitch

•Numbness in a hand or foot

•Sciatica (shooting pain in the buttocks and legs)

They also cause pain in joints such as the shoulder, wrist, hip, knee, and ankle. Unfortunately this pain is often mistaken for arthritis, tendinitis, bursitis, or ligament injury.

The pain caused by Trigger Points can vary from burning, throbbing, stabbing, deep, dull and achy with varying levels of pain.

Click here for a list of all the pain relief products that I use, or that I recommend to patients,family and friends.

How do I get rid of my pain caused by MuscleTrigger Points?

There are many ways to treat Trigger Points. What Dr. Travell used on President Kennedy were injections of a local anesthetic directly into the points.

You would probably prefer not to have needle injections if it weren’t absolutely necessary. Thankfully it is not usually necessary.

In my clinic I used two other techniques taught by Dr. Travell.

1. A coolant spray and stretch of the muscle containing the TP. This is a very effective treatment, but can only be done by a licensed healthcare provider.

2. Ischemic Compression (Thumb Pressure Therapy) to the Trigger Point itself. This is the application of progressively stronger pressure on a Trigger Point to eliminate the point’s tenderness.

I would also prescribe treatment for patients to work on their Trigger Points at home. Some of these treatments were:

• To treat Trigger Points in the foot, the patient would roll the foot over a golf ball while seated.

• To treat Trigger Points in the upper, middle, or lower back, the patient would lay on the floor with a tennis ball underneath them directly under the Trigger Point.

• I also recommended having a family member or friend use their own thumbs to press on Trigger Points in the patient’s shoulders, especially in the trapezius muscle at the top of the shoulders.

There are other therapies that can help with Trigger Points including massage, stretching, electrotherapy, ultrasound, active release and Graston techniques, and others.

Most of these therapies can only be performed by a licensed healthcare provider.

It’s worth doing what you can for yourself at home before having to spend money to get relief from your Trigger Points.

Today there are many good tools available that make self treatment of Muscle Trigger Points easy to do in the comfort of your home.

The tool that I always have within reach of my desk so that I can treat my own muscle trigger points is the Body Back Buddy Self Massage Tool.

You can use the Back Buddy on almost any muscle in your body and it brings amazing relief of muscle spasms, pain, and stiffness in hard to reach muscles.

Easy to understand instructions come with the Back Buddy Self Massage Tool.

The trigger point tool I use all the time to self treat the tight muscles in my upper back and shoulders can be seen by going to the Body Back Buddy link below. This will bring you to where you can see a picture of this excellent Trigger Point tool.Body Back Buddy Trigger Point Tool.

If you are unsuccessful at relieving your Trigger Points yourself, you can then go to your physician or physical therapist.

It is common to find great improvement after one treatment. Repeated treatments are usually necessary if you have had the problem for a long time.

Stretching can be done at home after therapy to encourage the muscles that have been treated to stay in a pain free (lengthened) position.

To Your Best Health,

Dr. Cliff

Get My Single Best Idea For Getting Back Pain Relief Without Drugs Or Surgery by watching this Youtube video.

How to Straighten Your Back Video.

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