Stiff muscles and joints are a part of life. Aging may play a factor, or an injury. For many, it’s just that stupid chair at work! In any case, I found a general rule of thumb very useful for many of the patients that I treat for pain (not only pain, but this is a good starting point) which is very useful and helps immensely in the treatment process. It’s a simple rule of thumb that I keep in mind, and it is “increase range of motion, decrease your pain.”
With an understanding that this does not apply to every patient, I have seen many people benefit from simply improving their range of motion, in particular the lower extremities.
What is Range of Motion you ask?
“The full movement potential of a joint, usually its range of flexion and extension. For example, a knee might lack 10 degrees of full extension due to an injury.1”
Why is this important?
In an age of opioid epidemic and with very limited options on the pharmacological medicine, natural treatment options provide a great solution to helping individuals in the treatment of pain. You’d be surprise how many times very important clinical findings are missed, such as overly tensed muscles and restricted motions. So I’ve made it a point to use all the diagnostic tools at my disposal to get a better idea of the pathology (The cause or the origin of the disease).
Hey, how do you know this stuff? Do you do this like everyday?
Yes I do. I practice in the cities of Pasadena, Downey, and Burbank. Based in Los Angeles, California, but I call the world my home. Yes, I am looking forward to traveling more and helping more people where I can. I see anywhere from 5 to 14 patients a day, dealing primarily with pain management in the worker’s compensation arena and private insurance sector. So I do have an opportunity to see and treat people first hand, and the goal is to always help patients move to the next step and improve their lives.
From a Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) perspective, it makes sense. TCM explains that we have energetic pathways called medians which travel superior to inferior and vice versa, meaning from top to bottom and from the bottom to the top. These meridians carry what we call “Qi” and “blood” to different areas of the body. Injury to these areas causes the pathway to work inefficiently and malfunction, causing pain, soreness, stiffness, or redness.
How do we approach this? By unblocking the channels and creating a better flow of energy, improving the circulation. Acupressure works very well and is why I focused my area of expertise on this therapy. But it is a conjunction of acupuncture, acupressure, herbs, stretching, heat, nutrition, and sleep…yes, sleep, that will work best.
This is not intended to be a medical diagnosis, so please see your healthcare provider and ask them about natural ways to help improve your movement for you health.
- 2016. Medicinenet.com. http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=5208