The prevalence of acute low back pain in the United States is considerable — a quarter of adults report the problem in the prior three months. While there are many conditions that can lead to low back pain, back spasms rank among the most common.
Whether it’s your first experience with a back spasm or you’ve had them before, all you know is that you want relief from the pain. A great way to achieve this relief is through trigger point injection therapy, which goes straight to the heart of your spasm and releases the tight muscles.
At Southern Pain and Spine Specialists, our team has had great success using trigger point injection therapy to help Charlotte, NC patients with back spasms, and we can do the same for you!
Behind the spasm
A spasm is a condition in which your muscles contract and tighten, often painfully, and form a knot. This knot of tense muscle tissue can then pull on other muscles and soft tissues in the area, creating more widespread discomfort.
The reason why your muscles start to spasm is in efforts to protect themselves against strain — they become tighter to prevent you from pulling them too far. Spasms in your back typically occur due to overusing your back muscles or due to an anatomical issue that prompts your muscles to contract more frequently.
Targeting the knot
Trigger point injections can help with back spasms because they’re designed to release the muscle tension. More specifically, we target the tight myofascial tissue (the thin membrane that surrounds your muscles) that’s created the trigger point for your muscle spasm.
The injections themselves contain a local anesthetic for pain relief and a steroid to reduce inflammation. If you’d prefer not to use any medications, we can also use dry needling. We still use a needle to infiltrate the trigger point to release the tissue, but we don’t release the medications.
How does a trigger point injection work?
Since the injection contains anesthetic or other types of relaxant, the injection will cause the muscle to relax. This restores blood flow to the area and relieves pain. This relief can last for weeks, during which time Dr. Alamarie at Southern Pain and Spine Specialists, will assist you in finding other treatments to assist with long-term healing.
In some cases, repeated injections may be necessary before long-term relief is possible.
What you can expect after your trigger point injection therapy
Most patients realize relief from their back spasm within 24-48 hours of their trigger point injections. While the injections can release the knot, your muscles may still be sore from tension for a few days, so it’s important to be patient.
Are there any risks?
Trigger point injections are a low-risk, minimally invasive technique for targeting muscle spasms and pain. There are typically no risks, but there may be soreness or numbness at the site of the injection.
How can you avoid muscle spasms in the future?
Once you’ve found relief from your muscle spasms, your focus should be preventing them from developing in the future. Follow these strategies for healthy, spasm-free muscles:
- Practice good posture
- Sleep well
- Exercise often
- Warm up and cool down when you exercise
- Avoid overexertion, especially when lifting heavy objects
- Stretch throughout the day
- Maintain a healthy diet
- Avoid sitting for long periods
- Don’t smoke
Set up an appointment
If you’d like to learn more about your treatment options for a painful back spasm, please contact our offices located in Charlotte, Matthews and Waxhaw, NC by clicking here to set up an appointment.
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