Changing Muscle Activity Using Biofeedback
1. Increase awareness of posture, muscle tension and release.
2. Decrease co-contraction patterns in flexor-extensor pairs.
3. Increase low levels of activity.
4. Smooth out co-ordination and balance of muscle groups.
5. Reduce stress-linked trigger point activity. Restore sleep.
6. Simulate movement acivities in daily living / work environments.
The goal of this Examination is to answer some questions, such as:
1. Is soft-tissue injury due to physiological dysregulation?
2. Why does pain persist?
3. What kinds of movements, if any, hinder recovery?
4. What kinds of movements, if any, facilitate recovery?
5. Are you unintentionally doing things that tend to inflame
soft-tissue or hamper recovery?
A Standardized Examination of Muscle Movement Patterns in Soft-Tissue Pain Syndromes
Most Common Soft -Tissue Pain Syndromes:
Low Back Pain
Neck and Back Pain
Repetitive Strain Injury
Complex Regional Pain Syndromes
This is examined by stretching and contracting groups of muscles in a systematic fashion, which reveal underlying patterns of muscle activity . These patterns can only be assessed using technology that registers bioelectical firing patterns from underneath the skin surface This activity called the surface lecto-Myo-Gram, or sEMG. SEMG analysis is the key to understanding soft-tissue muscle and pain disorders.
Things to look for in an EMG Movement Analysis:
Is a muscle is injured? Inflamed? Weak? Over-used? Fatigued?
Tense then relax A healthy muscle. It releases completely.
Tanse then release an unhealthy muscle. It hesitates when about the 80-90% of the way down.
It is like a hiccup pattern. It is described as the Decent Notch
Note the red arrows.
These muscles show bracing or garding, associated with local metabolic or inflammatory disturbance, trgiger points, and/or protective release patterns.
Lower Lumbar Back Pain Example: The problem here is not with the contraction pattern, but with the release
- The muscle on the right [red] does not calm down.as quickly as the muscle on the left.
Pain changes how you function and often brings out the worst aspects of your character.
A trained medical or health psychologist uses special muscle biofeedback equipment to visualize what happens under the skin. This kind of biofeedback relies on structured movements, a much different procedure than 'relaxation' training.
This is called Myofeedback movement training.
Here are some examples.
Autonomic Components of muscles in movement
Trigger points are innervated by sympathetic nervous system.
Increasing sympathetic activity increases muscle activity and pain
Hyperreactive sympathetic system heightens pain sensitivity
Increased sympathetic activity contributes to anxiety and depression.
Addressing Autonomic Activity
Change the level of SNS activity using mindfulness, relaxation and biofeedback..
Teach self-regulation skills such as Thought Interruption, abdominal breathing, hand warming, and heart rate variability
Teach to generalize to daily routine.
Provide marital counseling as necessary
Address Medication Management.
Pain perceprion can be exacerbated by medication.
Drug seeking behavior can perpetuate pain
Activation Issues: Muscle Pairs