When it comes to physical therapy or any field of medicine for that matter, it’s crucial to stay up to date on treatments, case studies, and specialty techniques. By devoting themselves to their practice and continuing education, physical therapists can deliver the most efficient and effective plans of care for their patients. Graston Technique has been used by physical therapists to treat a wide array of conditions for over 20 years. This treatment method has proven results for patients by reducing recovery times and increasing confidence in everyday movement. Read on to learn more about how the Graston technique may be able to help you.
What is the Graston Technique?
The Graston Technique is a patented form of manual therapy. Our physical therapists use a series of smooth, stainless steel tools that they run across the skin and muscles to promote soft tissue mobilization. These tools are able to break up scar tissue and fascial restrictions in your muscles, helping reduce pain and increasing mobility. By agitating or irritating the fascial restrictions under the skin the tools activate the natural inflammatory response in the body leading to increased blood flow and improved healing. While this may sound counterintuitive, the inflammatory response that is created allows the tissue to heal properly, encouraging the tissue to lay down with proper fiber direction and tension.
What Does the Graston Technique Treat?
The Graston Technique is useful for a variety of different physical conditions. Here are a few of the most common uses that this form of manual therapy can treat:
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
- Plantar Fasciitis
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome affects over 8 million Americans every year. The carpal tunnel is a narrow, rigid passageway of ligament and bone where the median nerve and tendons of the hand and fingers pass. The median nerve can sometimes become entrapped in the “tunnel” leading to numbness, weakness, and pain in the hand and fingers. This is often due to overuse of the muscles and tendons, leading to thickening or swelling in the tunnel.
With use of the Graston Technique, physical therapists can improve the mobility and tone of the muscles greatly reducing the irritation of the tendon in the tunnel. This leads to a decrease in the patient’s pain and numbness. Coupled with proper exercises, the overall treatment of the afflicted hand is greatly accelerated and oftentimes surgery is avoided.
Tendonitis is an extremely common condition that leads to inflammation or irritation of the tendons, cords that attach your muscles to your bones. It can be caused by a variety of motions, but typically stems from repetition of a particular motion over time, such as with a job or a hobby. It is also common among athletes that perform repetitive motions such as throwing a ball, swinging a golf club, or using a tennis racket. By using Graston Technique, we can speed up the recovery process of the tendons, causing less pain and increasing mobility.
Plantar fasciitis occurs when the fascia, a thick band of tissue that spans from the toes to the heel of the foot, becomes overstretched and starts to form tiny tears. This is especially common with athletes and individuals who work on their feet for hours at a time. It can be extremely painful and, if untreated, can lead to heel spurs in the bone which often require a more aggressive treatment. One of the best ways to keep it from escalating to this point is to use the Graston Technique. With the use of Graston instruments, blood flow is increased which catalyzes the healing process of the fascia band. This leads to reduced scar tissue and adhesions and can improve recovery times more quickly than traditional techniques.
Physical Therapy in Chicago
Whether you are suffering from one of these common conditions or are experiencing pain in one or more of your muscles, the Graston Technique may be able to help get you back to your everyday routine. If you are looking for Graston Technique experts in the Chicago area, look no further than IMPACT Physical Therapy. With locations in and near Chicago, we provide access to certified Graston Technique clinicians. With a variety of therapy services available, we are here to keep you living the best life. Contact us to schedule a consultation today!