Strain/Counterstrain: The Answer to Sciatica!

Strain/Counterstrain can heal Back pain and Sciatica for GOOD

Do you suffer with back pain or leg pain when you stand or walk?

Do you have pain when you sit for long periods of time or drive?

Do you ever experience pain, numbness or tingling into your butt, groin or down your leg?

Are you afraid that your pain will get worse if you don’t do anything about it?

 If you answered YES to any of these questions you can be suffering from Sciatica. A high propensity of patients that suffer from Sciatica do so because of an injury sustained to a muscle located in the buttock region called the piriformis. When this muscle is injured it can irritate the nearby sciatic nerve and cause pain, numbness and tingling along the buttocks, back of leg and into the foot. Fortunately, an osteopathic technique called Strain/counterstrain has been proven to work more effectively than traditional physiotherapies. Relief in 90% of patients is seen after just 2-3 visits.

How does it work? Strain and Counterstrain is an osteopathic technique, where the clinician positions joints or spasmodic muscles into normal position thereby turning off inappropriate information sent from those muscles to the central nervous system which maintains that particular dysfunction. The big advantage of this technique is its extreme gentleness to the patient and the long-lasting results it achieves by correcting the underlying pathology.

 What to Expect?   The clinician identifies the muscle spasm or joint dysfunction by swollen or palpably painful tissue identified as a “tender point”. The clinician than passively positions the muscle or joint in the appropriate position and holds that position for 90 seconds. The clinician monitors tissue change and waits for optimum improvement to occur followed by a slow and passive return to neutral to re-assess the tissue. Most patients have less pain and improved movement immediately following treatment, though some soreness can occur due to “toxins” being released.

Can my muscles be in spasm without me knowing?  Yes! People experience decreased mobility, tightness, or nothing at all if another muscle is compensating for it.

Are there any restrictions following treatment?  It is highly recommended to drink plenty of water after treatment to help in the flushing out of waste products/ toxins released from the “tender points”. It is wise to avoid quick movements and exercises involving heavy weights or resistance.

How Often to Perform? Strain/Counterstrain should be performed 1-3x/ week depending on the chronicity of the patient’s condition.

What type of conditions does Strain Counterstrain help?   A variety of musculoskeletal and neuromuscular conditions can be treated with this gentle technique. The treatment has helped patients with conditions that had previously failed with traditional physical therapy, chiropractic, massage, acupuncture, injections, and medications. The is a partial list of conditions that have been successfully treated with strain counterstrain: chronic pain, fibromyalgia, sciatica, migraines, bulging discs, plantar fasciitis, low back pain, muscle strains, sports injuries, neck pain, rotator cuff injuries, SI joint pain, ankle sprains, ITB dysfunction and rib dysfunction.

If you’d like more information on Sciatica and how we can help relieve your symptoms, please contact our office or book an appointment!

Author Dr. Dmitry Shestakovsky Director of Rehabilitation at MTE Physical Therapy with a focus on manual therapy with an emphasis on osteopathic and spinal manipulation in evaluating and treating musculoskeletal and neuromuscular dysfunction.

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