How can physical therapists help you to break up scar tissue?

How to Break Up Scar Tissue

Do you know why your muscles may be tense and sore if you haven’t been working out? Can you tell why your joints feel misaligned and achy? No, the answers aren’t poor posture or arthritis in many cases. 

Give up? One common cause of muscle tension and soreness and joint aches and misalignment is scar tissue. Areas of scar tissue are also called adhesions. They occur anytime your muscles are injured, and adhesions can make the affected muscle painful and less flexible. They can also pull a joint out of alignment if the muscle is near one, which can trigger pain. 

Physical therapists can help you figure out how to break up scar tissue that’s causing you problems. There are multiple therapy methods your physical therapist can use to address adhesions. 

How can your physical therapist break up your scar tissue?

Figuring out how to best break up your scar tissue will first involve an evaluation of the area involved. This allows your physical therapist to learn more about your issue. They can then choose to attack your adhesions with: 

  1. Therapeutic exercises — Weaker or recently formed adhesions can be broken up by certain stretches. Your physical therapists can show you how to do specific therapeutic exercises that can stretch your muscles and break up adhesions. 
  1. Manual therapy — Your physical therapist might also opt to bring their hands to bear on your adhesions. They can do so by using their hands to apply pressure and friction to the affected area. This type of therapy is known as manual therapy. 
  1. Cupping — Another way your adhesions may be treated is with cupping therapy. This involves your physical therapist temporarily attaching special cups to your skin. The vacuum inside the cups draws the skin up into them, which can help improve circulation. Your therapist can also move a cup along a muscle adhesion to realign the muscle fibers. 
  1. Instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization (IASTM) — For the toughest adhesions, physical therapists will often use IASTM. This technique involves specialists pushing metal tools along the affected muscle. The tools allow your physical therapist to apply more force to the adhesion than they could with their hands. 

Learn how to break up your scar tissue with help from Whatcom PT

Are you ready to learn how to break up your scar tissue effectively? Our Whatcom Physical Therapy team is ready to help you learn how we can address your muscle adhesions. We can do a free screening on you to pinpoint which muscles contain scar tissue. Then, our physical therapists can create a personalized treatment plan for you that’s designed to break up the adhesions and reduce your pain. 

Contact our team today for more information about how we can address soft tissue adhesions or to schedule an initial appointment.