Over one third of the population will experience neck pain or back pain at some point in their lives. Neck pain and back pain can stem from a number of different causes, such as muscle tension or muscular imbalances, arthritis, spinal stenosis, whiplash, or disc issues. These conditions respond very well to integrative therapies. Different therapeutic modalities are like different languages that your body speaks – the key is to find the right language (or combination of languages) that your body will listen to. At Stepping Stone Acupuncture & Wellness, we offer many services that can benefit patients suffering from neck pain and back pain, either as stand-alone therapies or in combination with one another. When it comes to hands-on medicine, we find that the whole is often greater than the sum of the parts.
Therapeutic Massage – which incorporates Swedish massage, myofascial release, deep tissue, and sports massage techniques – works to reduce muscle tension and pain, improve circulation, and increase range of motion. It can be highly effective at reducing chronic tension or pain in the neck, shoulders, and back. Our massage therapists are highly skilled at pinpointing where your pain is actually coming from and treating the source of the problem.
Acupuncture involves the insertion of single-use, sterile, solid needles into specific acupuncture points on the body to reduce tension and pain, overcome disease, and rebalance the body. Your acupuncturist will work with you to determine the underlying cause of your neck or back pain from a Chinese Medicine perspective, and your treatments will be tailored to your presentation. Additional Chinese Medicine methods such as cupping, gua sha manual therapy, or moxibustion heat therapy may be included in acupuncture sessions, when appropriate. Acupuncture can reduce muscle tension, reduce inflammation, interrupt the pain response, promote tissue healing, and change how the nervous system perceives and responds to pain.
Cupping is a manual therapy technique from Chinese Medicine that uses special cups to create suction over some of the large muscle areas. Cupping helps to create space and movement in the layers of fascia, or connective tissue, that get stuck together over time. It also increases blood flow, reduces muscle tension, and draws toxins out of the tissues. We include cupping in acupuncture sessions when appropriate or offer stand-alone cupping sessions to target neck or back pain.
Craniosacral Therapy is a gentle hands-on manual therapy technique. The craniosacral system extends from the head (cranium) to the sacrum and includes the central nervous system. A craniosacral therapist can feel and rebalance the rhythm of cerebrospinal fluid flow, which covers your bones, joints, and sutures. Craniosacral Therapy seeks to reset the nervous system, which operates on high alert when you are in a state of pain. It is a gentle option for releasing tension and pain stored in the neck, back, spine, or nervous system.
Abdominal Therapy is founded on the ancient Maya therapy of abdominal massage, including pelvic assessment, treatment, and correction. Through specialized external massage techniques, your Abdominal Therapist guides your organs, soft tissue, and skeletal structure back into their optimal position, allowing for improved flow of energy, blood, and lymph through the abdomen, pelvis, and low back. By helping create better alignment of the soft tissue, Abdominal Therapy can treat low back pain, sacral pain, and pelvic pain.
Reflexology is a therapeutic treatment in which pressure is applied to particular points and regions of the foot to affect change in the whole body. Reflex points on the feet correspond to different organs and body systems, and by stimulating these points the practitioner can create positive change in a particular system and bring the body back into balance. A trained reflexologist can help the neck and shoulder muscles to relax and soften through focused work on the feet. Also, our reflexology sessions include a short head and neck massage, to aid in relaxation and helping release tense muscles.
Integrative Physical Therapy is a unique approach to orthopedic physical therapy, specializing in the evaluation and treatment of neuromuscular dysfunction, issues, and injury. After a thorough evaluation, your physical therapist will come up with an individualized treatment plan that utilizes corrective exercise, manual therapy techniques, and a wide array of holistic modalities. Physical therapy can help identify the cause of your neck and shoulder tension and teach you how to improve posture and move better so as to reduce pain and tension, and increase mobility, all while giving you a better understanding of how to prevent the muscle tension in the future.