|Graston Technique Tools.|
They don't quite look like they would take away pain do they?
So many of us live with some sort of recurring pain issue: a bad back, a bum knee, a hip that grates in the socket or is off-balance. As our bodies age it seems these injuries can just focus themselves and become chronic, ingrained. We sort of adapt our movements to them, which doesn't help things.
|Helpful diagram of the nasty cumulative injury cycle.|
Last year these migraines became chronic: instead of having one every couple of weeks I started having them weekly, then twice a week, and then even three times a week... so that I felt like I was in a constant migraine (they typically would last 12 to 24 hours, followed by a "wobbly" recovery day).
People often talk about migraines beginning with neck pain, and that was always the case for me. But when the migraines became chronic the pain in my neck took on a new quality: a burning , searing, constant pain. I felt like there were little fires all up and down my neck, through to my shoulders.
I decided to go for physiotherapy and massage: enough was enough!
It was just dumb good fortune that I found a massage therapist who specializes in Graston Technique: I didn't even know what it was. After explaining my pain, and the migraines, I told her about my "neck history". I had Congenital Muscular Torticollis as an infant, and while my poor parents corrected it with physiotherapy exercises, I've always had issues with the right side of my neck. It always felt tight and knotted, and while I have worked endlessly on my posture over the years with exercise, it typically felt tight and shortened, a bit higher, off-balance.
My therapist basically told me my neck muscles were knotted, and adhered together, with scar tissue (particularly on my right "Torticollis side"), and that I could benefit from some Graston Treatment.
The tools shown above are typical Graston tools, they are shaped bits of metal, and when applied into the neck tissue they smooth and scrape down the scar tissue. As you can imagine this can leave quite a lot of bruising!
But it actually doesn't hurt, though it feels a bit tender afterwards. I did wear lots of scarves to cover my bruises during treatment however... I didn't want to alarm anyone.
So I've had treatment for about three months now and my neck pain is gone. I stopped having the neck-triggered migraines about two months ago. I'm now in the maintenance stage, and when I went for my massage this week I didn't even have to have any Graston treatment at all. I'm now working on strengthening the muscles in my back with careful exercises, this is to create a supportive structure for my neck (so that it doesn't revert to old patterns).
If you think you have any sort of scar tissue glomming up your muscles and causing you pain, I would highly recommend trying the Graston Technique.
It's a bit weird, but clearly it can work wonders!
Are you dealing with chronic pain of any sort? Is an old injury the cause?
Hope you have a pain-free day!