Understanding muscle tension
Muscle tension means: a condition in which your muscles are semi-contracted for an extended period of time. It is most often caused by mental stress, which constricts blood vessels, reducing circulation and therefore oxygenation to the muscles. When circulation is hampered, oxygen has a hard time and waste products have a hard time getting out, leaving you with muscles that feel tighter and opening the door to muscle spasm and pain. What parts of your lifestyle are contributing to muscle tension?
Factors that contribute to muscle tension
- Exercise: boosts oxygen supply to the muscles and stretching helps to prevent muscles from becoming overly tight or shortened.
- Sleep: As you sleep, the body supplies muscles with more oxygen to help breakdown lactic acid; if this doesn't happen, excess lactic acid contributes to the formation of trigger points.
- Diet: Certain ingredients affect muscle tension. Among the best things you can do are: reduce caffeine intake, and make sure you are getting enough vitamin B12 and calcium.
- Keeping stress down: mental stress translates directly to muscle tension. Pain in the muscles can then cause mental stress and the cycle will perpetuate itself.
Dispelling muscle tension
Chiropractic adjustment helps to alleviate painful pressure on nerves and boosts circulation. We release muscle knots with trigger point therapy and treat myofascial pain with instrument-assisted release. All of these modalities are intended to open up areas of tension to an influx of blood which carries fresh oxygen and nutrients that help dispel tension and allow you to move freely. If you are interested in living a life with less muscle tension, call us to schedule an appointment today.