More About Muscle Trigger Points

Trigger points can be found in muscles, connective tissue(tissue that holds us together), and periosteum (the thin sheet-like covering on bones) and manifests as pain. This point of pain is caused because the demand of blood supply is much higher than the actual blood supply to that area.

In 1973, Awad examined biopsy tissues from “muscle trigger points” using an electron microscope and found serotonin and histamine in excess in trigger point areas. This is the result of an increase in platelets and mast cells in the area in response to the body’s demand for increased blood supply. This in turn is a response to increased or heightened activity in a muscle(s) or internal organ(s), i.e. viscera or emotional turmoil that is manifested as:

  • muscle strain or spasm,
  • viscerospasm, e.g. spasm of the gall bladder or kidney, or
  • heightened psychogenic neuromuscular mechanism.

In the first case of muscle strain or spasm, reflex low grade tension in the muscle results. According to histologically conducted studies  by Heine, 1997 and Gogoleva, 2001, “low grade tension in the skeletal muscles and fascia are responsible for the low grade inflammation around the terminal parts of the sensory and motor neurons which end in the soft tissues. This inflammation activates the local fibroblasts, which deposit collagen around the nerve endings forming so-called “collagen cuffs”. This additional irritating factor triggers an afferent sensory flow to the central nervous system which is interpreted by the brain as pain. This mechanism partially describes generation of pain in the area of muscle trigger points.”

In the case of trigger points in the skeletal muscles which are developed as a result of chronic visceral disorders. In 1955 Dr. Glezer and Dalicho proposed that “patients with cardiac disorders exhibit active trigger points in the trapezius, levator scapulae, rhomboideus muscles. In such cases the end-plate abnormalities do not have anything to do with formation of trigger points in the skeletal muscles. They are the result of the phenomenon of convergence of pain stimuli within the same segments of the spinal cord which are responsible for the innervation of both the affected inner organ and skeletal muscles.” To that end they have been successful in developing and proposing maps of reflex zone abnormalities in skin, fascia and muscles, including trigger point development.

In the case of psychogenic neuromuscular responses the explanation for their development mimics the cause of trigger points as in muscle strain or spasm.

Muscle trigger  points can typically be found easily. The video below describes how this can be done.

Treating muscle trigger points is mandatory because of the vasomotor response. For example, according to Lyn Paul Taylor, A.A., B.A., M.A., R.P. “trigger point formations housed in the upper trapezius and scalenus muscles may, through this developmental process, precipitate a shoulder-hand syndrome (reflex dystrophy) as muscle splinting and vascular changes progressively involve the whole upper extremity.” Very important is also the fact that primary and secondary trigger points exist. Treatment of the primary muscle trigger point is obviously the only successful method.

Muscle Trigger Points

Muscle trigger points can be a source of sometimes debilitating pain. These trigger points may feel like tiny pea-sized indurations inside muscles or may sometimes even be as large as your thumb. The pain you feel may vary from low grade to severe and may occur at rest or only on movement. It is often felt like a dull aching steady pain that lies deep inside a muscle. Very often the pain or tenderness may be felt far away from the actual causal site. These muscle trigger points are very tender that can make you wince with pain and pull away when pressure is applied to these spots.

Trigger points can occur in any muscle, but is usually found in muscles that are used the most or repetitively. Our neck and low back muscles are very susceptible to the development of muscle trigger points, as are the muscles of the shoulder blades, In our fast paced life of today, finding quick and easy relaxation methods is a boon. Below is a video that demonstrates a simple method, using tennis balls, to help you get rid of those muscle trigger points in your body, especially those that are located in the shoulder blades and low back.

Muscle trigger points are not the same thing as a muscle spasm. A spasm involves a violent contraction of the whole muscle, whereas a trigger point is a local contraction in only a small part of a muscle. A strain or tear involves physical damage to the muscle or tendon fibers. Such damage has not been demonstrated in studies of trigger points.  However, such injuries may predispose one to developing “muscle trigger points”.

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Craniosacral Therapy, The Healing Code and Access Bars

From being worked upon by a practitioner to be healed, to learning healing techniques to be able to work on yourself  and then to finally learn the ability to be present in your life in every moment, without judgment of you or anyone else, accept everything, reject nothing, and create everything you desire in life – greater than what you currently have, and more than what you can imagine.

A craniosacral therapy session involves the therapist placing their hands on the patient, which allows them to “tune into the craniosacral rhythm”.The practitioner gently works with the spine and the skull and its cranial sutures, diaphragms, and fascia. In this way, the restrictions of nerve passages are said to be eased, the movement of cerebrospinal fluid through the spinal cord is said to be optimized, and misaligned bones are said to be restored to their proper position.

In 2001, Dr. Alex Loyd discovered how to activate a physical function built into the body that consistently and predictably removes this one source of illness, so that the body’s immune system can do its job of healing whatever is wrong in the body. Dr. Loyd named this process The Healing Codes.

Dr. Loyd’s findings have been validated by thousands of people from all over the world who have used The Healing Codes to heal virtually any physical, emotional, or relational issue, as well as to realize tremendous breakthroughs in personal success.

Finally, the purpose of Access Bars is to create a world of consciousness and oneness. Consciousness includes everything and judges nothing. It is our target to get you to the point where you receive from Access the awareness of everything, with no judgment of anything. If you have no judgment of anything, then you get to look at everything for what it is, not for what you want it to be, not for what it ought to be, but just for what it is.

Consciousness is the ability to be present in your life in every moment, without judgment of you or anyone else. It is the ability to receive everything, reject nothing, and create everything you desire in life – greater than what you currently have, and more than what you can imagine.

What if you were willing to nurture and care for you? What if you would open the doors to being everything you have decided it is not possible to be? What would it take for you to realize how crucial you are to the possibilities of the world?

Integrative Healing Dynamics for Autism: The Diet

Integrating Healing Dynamics for Autism encompasses the following treatments:

  • craniosacral therapy
  • visceral manipulation techniques
  • advice on nutrition and diet

Our GOALS in the treatment are as follows:

  • Rebalance the nervous system and release both temporal bones in order to improve: language, learning and focus/ attention,eye contact, social interaction and reduce sleep difficulties
  • Improve intestinal health to reduce gastrointestinal problems (diarrhea or constipation) and ease up toilet training
  • Decrease the body’s physical manifestations of stress via skin rashes/eczema and body pain


  • Diet and nutritional supplements, which are discussed below
  • Drugs/Hormones like Baclofen, D-Cycloserine and Oxytocin
  • Manual Therapy viz: Craniosacral Therapy, Visceral Manipulation and Sensory Integration


Doctors now know that the body of the child with autism requires very specific care by offering special enzymes for digestion, treatment for yeast infections, attention to digestive issues and nutrient and fatty acid supplementation. Numerous studies have reported that diet and supplemental nutrients may provide moderate benefits to autism patients, including higher scholastic test scores and earlier neurological development.Since every child is unique, results will vary. While there are several diets out there, the Autism Research Institute (ARI) found improvement in:

  • 65% for those applying Gluten-Free Casein-Free (GFCF) Diet, and
  • 66 % for those applying Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD)

These typically fall into the acidic food category. Research has found that the body is doomed for disease in an acidic environment. Broadly acidic foods include meat/fish, dairy and sugars (as in sodas as well) and alkaline foods include fruits and vegetables. To regain health (currently suffering from disease) a ratio of 90% alkaline and 10% acidic food choices has been recommended. The test for acidic/alkaline environment(pH) in the body can be easily performed with litmus paper purchased in a drugstore. It has to mandatorily read above pH7. Therefore, the first step by parents of autistic kids should include:

  • Removal of gluten, which is the protein found in wheat, rye, barley, commercial oats, kamut, and spelt.
  • Removal of casein, which is the protein found in dairy.
  • Decrease the amount of sugar they feed their children.
  • The guidance of a qualified nutrition professional is always recommended.

Successful parents begin with simple steps. They serve:

A diet comprising:

  • fresh fruits, vegetables but avoid food that naturally contains salicylates (such as almonds, oranges, raspberries, apples, cherries, grapes, peaches, strawberries, cucumbers, plums, and tomatoes)
  • grass-fed meats whenever possible
  • organic foods to remove antibiotics, hormones and pesticides
  • no pre-packaged, canned or frozen foods
  • no foods that contain preservative, monosodium glutamate and additives like food colors and artificial ingredients
  • big moderation in sugar intake

Nutritional supplements that include:

  • omega-3 fatty acids,
  • higher levels of minerals like calcium, iron, magnesium and chromium
  • nutrient supplements of Vitamin-B6 and Vitamin-C, Folic Acid, Niacin, and dimethylglycine
  • Methyl B12 injections or nasal spray

Finally, do not forget:

  • water, and
  • exercise are very essential to the living cell for it hydration and oxygen “nutrient” supplies.

The secret to success as in anything is to start and persevere and be consisitent. Children thrive on consistency.

Source: Source:

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Visceral Manipulation In Pediatrics

As we already know, visceral manipulation is organ specific fascial mobilization. In other words, our viscera or organs are treated specifically in relation to their associated structures and surrounding connective tissue. In order to maintain good health in the body the viscera must move in harmony with the other structures in the body. If this does not happen, the presence of organ restrictions can create fixed points of tension in our system around which the body now needs to move. This paves the way for disease and dysfunction.

A visceral restriction is just like a myofascial restriction, except that it is within the organ or in the connective tissue outside of the organ. A visceral restriction develops from an inflammatory process, in which an exudate is formed. This exudate thickens and becomes a harder, denser, drier area. Restrictions are caused by infection, birth trauma, in-utero malpositioning, falls, abnormal neural activity, medications and toxicity.

The practitioner can determine the area of greatest restriction by “listening”. “General listening” indicates the site of the greatest tension in the body at that time while with local listening, the practitioner’s hand is attracted more specifically to the level of the restriction. Next, the practitioner identifies by palpation the specific structure that is involved, then embarks on the release that the body needs.

For instance, if a baby has reflux, with “general listening”, the listening goes to the upper stomach. “Local listening” will help identify if the restriction is between the stomach and liver or the stomach and diaphragm (where the esophagus goes through the diaphragm), or perhaps between the esophagus and pleura of the lung.This specific area needs to be treated. This is the basic technique in all “visceral manipulation” sessions.


When treating a baby or child with visceral manipulation, the therapist contacts the organ and structure related to that organ, and treats in the direction of ease. For example, if the baby with reflux has tension between the stomach and liver,the therapist contacts the lesser curvature of the stomach with one hand, the left lobe of the liver with the other hand. By contacting these two organs, the organs will start a “listening”, a movement into the direction of ease. In this case, the stomach and liver will pull towards each other until a tissue release is palpated. A release feels like a softening of the tissue. The restriction is freed so that the stomach and liver slide and glide on each other.

After the area is treated, the next step is to re-listen to the body. Very often the listening takes you to the left occipitomastoid suture – the suture between the temporal and occipital bones. Now if we look at our anatomy, we see that the vagus nerve exits in the jugular foramen between these two bones. We may even feel a “line of tension” between the occipitomastoid suture and the upper stomach. This would make sense anatomically because of the pathway of the esophagus and vagus nerve as they both travel through the thorax. Thus, when we “line up the tension”, or engage the two structures between our hands so that we can feel a specific tension, we may release these structures and thus help the child with their symptom of reflux.

The video below talks about the various applications of visceral manipulation in children.

Follow us for more information on visceral manipulation as an invaluable adjunct to good health. 


Manipulative Therapies

Manipulative therapies can be defined as methods of resetting a particular body part in order to precipitate a healing response in that body. Quite often the treatment is applied at a distance away from the actual symptoms, to obtain satisfactory results.

There are several types of manipulative therapies, among which most importantly are: osteopathy, craniosacral therapy, visceral manipulation, articular manipulation, neuromeningeal manipulation, chiropractic, massage and reflexology, to name a few.Every method described below has a video following it to present it in greater detail.

Osteopathy is a therapy that uses manipulation on the whole body in order to reduce discomfort, improve muscle performance, joint movement and restore the person to full health, by working on the muscles, ligaments and skeleton.

Craniosacral therapy is a gentle, hands-on method of evaluating and enhancing the functioning of a physiological body system called the craniosacral system – comprised of the membranes and cerebrospinal fluid that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord. Using a soft touch generally about the weight of a nickel, practitioners release restrictions in the craniosacral system to improve the functioning of the central nervous system.

Visceral manipulation

is a gentle hands-on therapy that works through the body’s visceral system (the heart, liver, intestines and other internal organs) to locate and alleviate these abnormal points of tension throughout the body. At optimal health, the relationship between the organs (viscera) and structures of the body (muscles, membranes, fasciae and bones) remains stable despite the body’s endless varieties of motion. But when one organ can’t move in harmony with its surrounding viscera due to abnormal tone, adhesions or displacement, it works against all the body’s organs and structures. This disharmony creates fixed, abnormal points of tension that the body is forced to move around. That chronic irritation, in turn, paves the way for disease and dysfunction.

Articular manipulation, another part to the manipulative therapies curriculum, works on the premise that different layers of the body starting right from the deepest layer of bone to the muscles, ligaments, blood vessels and nerves, all working together to create an interdependence and unity of the body’s structure. These layers interact with the central nervous system through neural components and motor components. Specific emotions with specific personalities also have an effect on the CNS which affects all these layers. Keeping a balance in these different layers maintains joint pressure. The pressure inside a joint is important. In a healthy joint exists a negative pressure,. All the joint structures stick together to create a sucking effect inside the joint, a kind of “togertherness”. When dysfunctional the negative pressure decreases (becomes more positive pressure) which destroys the cartilage, and the joint falls apart.

Neuromingeal manipulation is a precise treatment of nerves in the body that are causing pain. This is achieved by rolling or gliding movements of the said nerve combined with movement of the extremities or joints in order to relieve any loss of mobility or tightness the nerve  may have.

Chiropractic is a therapy which involves treatment on the musculoskeletal system with paticular emphasis on the spine and nervous system. it can help shoulder and low back pain and help relieve asthma,constipation and digestive problems.

Massage, another modality in the manipulative therapies family is a very pleasant therapy that utilizes stroking, kneading and other techniques to manipulate the soft tissues of the body. It is ideal for stress relief, relaxation and as a remedial treatment for physical and emotional problems.

Reflexology falls into the manipulative therapies category mainly for its ability to relieve stress and decrease digestive problems. The technique involves applying pressure to points on the feet and sometimes the hands. therapists believe that they can stimulate energy by reflex action to a related muscle or organ and encourage healing.

Follow us for more details on “manipulative therapies”

Visceral Manipulation

The structural integrity of the body and its function are always compromised when there are abnormal tensions in connective tissue. Visceral Manipulation focuses on locating and resolving abnormal tension of connective tissue that links the organs of the body. Correcting these imbalances also release serotonin and can help alleviate chronic irritation and stress, which sometimes is the cause of “dis-ease”.

Strains in the connective tissue of the viscera can result from surgical scars, adhesions, illness, posture or injury. Tension patterns form through the fascial network deep within the body, creating symtoms, sometimes far from their sources for which the body will have to compensate. Thus, viscerospasm, displacement and adhesions can all cause our organs to work inefficiently creating chronic irritation and abnormal points of tension. The main purpose of visceral manipulation is to reinstate the normal mobility and motion in the body’s organs.

Visceral manipulation assists in correcting imbalances throughout the body including musculoskeletal, vascular, nervous, urogenital, respiratory, digestive and lymphatic dysfunction. It evaluates and treats the dynamics of motion and suspension in relation to organs, membranes, fascia and ligaments. Visceral manipulation increases proprioceptive communication within the body, thereby revitalizing a person and relieving symptoms of pain, dysfunction, and poor posture.

Evaluation and treatment of a patient with visceral manipulation methods requires assessment of the structural relationships between the viscera, and their ligamentous or fascial attachments to the musculoskeletal system.

The video below sums what visceral manipulation is about.

Follow  us for more on various treatment modalities and applications of “visceral manipulation”.

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A Work Out For Glutes

A workout for glutes is next in our series of body sculpting exercises. Staying with us on these series will assist in a cost saving collection of easy but effective workout routines that you can do from the comfort of your home. As a recap: Some  of the benefits of workout for glutes and body sculpting exercises include:

  • Increased metabolism and fat loss by allowing fat  and calorie burn 24-hours a day, because included in body sculpting is a weight loss program
  • Muscle re-shaping and toning and lean muscle increase
  • Increased bone density and reduced osteoporosis, because of the weighted component of the exercises, yet joint impact is low
  • Cardiovascular conditioning
  • Increased flexibility, strength &
  • Greater self-esteem and confidence

Of course, for best results, in your work out for glutes, commit to an eating program that consists of a nutritious weight loss diet and a cardio routine(see below) that cranks up your metabolism, so that you lose weight that comes off your entire body. Learn how to count calories while exercising to know how much you need to burn to lose weight. They’re inseparable.

Shoulder Sculpting Exercises for Sharper Shoulders

To motivate you to start “shoulder sculpting”, let me share with you what you’ll benefit from the shoulder exercises:

  • Strong shoulder sculpting give striking visual effect as a result of graceful lines and indent forms on your upper arms and torso  and being that shoulders don’t carry a lot of fat you can see quick results of your workout.
  • The second motivator – when your shoulders are strengthened, it’s easier for you to carry out your daily tasks and strong shoulders lower your risk of injury as well.

Regular shoulder sculpting exercises is all that it takes. Below is a set of videos that will show you a routine shoulder sculpting exercises that will strengthen your shoulder muscles.

  • Start with your feet hip-distance apart, both arms resting at your sides and holding a 3 lb to 5 lb weight in both your hands. Distribute your weight onto both equally
  • Exhale and begin your exercises in keeping with the videos below. Pause and lower arms back down by your side. Repeat for 10 to 12 repetitions. Complete 2 to 3 sets.
  • They include: triceps curls, deltoid shapers and biceps curls.

Triceps Curl

Deltoid Shapers

Biceps Curls

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The Flow of Lymph

The flow of lymph belongs to the circulatory apparatus wherein one direction allows for the blood to leave the heart (the arterial system) and two others allow for it to return( the venous and lymphatic system). Therefore the lymphatic system runs parallel to the “red” blood system.

Lymph is a fluid that is formed by part of the constituents of blood filtering out of the blood capillaries into the spaces between each cell (the interstitium). In order to return to the heart, the flow of lymph from the interstitial spaces are reabsorbed  into the feather-fine lymphagions into the lymphatic capillaries into the pre-collectors to the collectors, nodes, ducts and trunks. The cysterna chili (at T12) and thoracic duct (crosses the midline at T4-T6) represent the terminal  lymphatic pathways that eventually join the major venous circulation just before reaching the heart. As in any active “waterway”, the flow of lymph is directed by pumps and valves to prevent a backflow. This is mediated by contracting muscle fibers in the lymphangions at the pulse rate of 5-8/minute at rest. This rate increases during excercise. These lymphangions consist of 2-3 layers of spiral muscle and  one way valves. They producing peristaltic waves of contraction mediated by the autonomic nervous system. Stimuating these lymphangions can increase the flow of lymph back to heart through the lymphatic system by some twenty to thirty times. This forms the basis of lymphatic drainage wherein a mechanical compressive force is applied to increase the amount of lymph entering the lymphangions which are then subjected to a stretch and continued external compression to increase the volume of flow of lymph into the lymphatic system.

The lymphatic circulation is a low presure system moving with a slow rhythm and low velocity. Lymphatics are present everywhere in the body except in tissues without blood vascularization viz.: the epithelium ,cartilage and the lens and cornea of the eye. And certain tissues possessing vascularization viz.: the placenta, the labyrinth of the inner ear and central nervous system. Exceptions to these are the dura and pia mater, the pituitary capsule, the orbit of the eye, the nasal mucosa and the middle ear.

Lymph drainage is a very useful adjunct to manual therapy in order to:

  1. Reroute the flow of lymph in primary and secondary edemas in the skin, mucosa,muscles,viscera, joints, cranial sutures, periosteum, chambers of the eyes, cochlea, etc. increase of the rate of the flow of lymph because increasing lymphatic flow improves the filtering and removal of fluid, inflammatory mediators, and waste products from interstitial space.
  2. Drain toxins inorder to enhance tissue regeneration e.g. scars, stretch marks, wrinkles, fractures or surgery.
  3. Stimulation of the immune system
  4. Stimulation of the parasympathetic system
  5. Enhance/correct the functioning of the nervous system, the digestive system, the urogenital system, the respiratory system and in dental and metabolic disorders, gynecology, dermatology,ophthalmology, ENT and orthopedic and osteopathic conditions
  6. Reduce pain and muscle spasm.

There are several contraindications as well, mainly including the following:

  1. Acute infectious  and inflammatory illnesses
  2. Serious circulatory problems e.g. phlebitis, venous obstruction
  3. Cardiac issues e.g. angina, CCF
  4. Hemorrhage except in the case of a hematoma
  5. Absence of urination
  6. Active cancer or an undiagnosed “lump”

For maximum results the following points are to be observed:

  1. Hand pressure should be optimal to prevent lymphangion collapse. This averages approximately 8oz./sq.inch
  2. Frequency and rhythm of hand motion. This is typically one full maneuver every one to four seconds and can be repeated 8-16 times per area for maximum effectiveness till you feel you have efficiently moved the fluid.
  3. Direction of the flow of lymph is towards the heart

In general, once thixotropy ( liquefaction of the jelly-like constituents of the connective tissue) occurs at the beginning of a session, wait for the lymph to move your hand at the right time with the right frquency and in the right direction of the flow of lymph.