Pain is an attention-grabbing sensation, and is how your body alerts you to a problem. However, pain is secondary to an unfelt primary problem. Unfortunately, all too often we attack the messenger instead of the message, because it is easy to become fixated on a pain.
An excessive increase of muscle tone underlies and accompanies many maladies. Thomas Griner, the creator of NeuroSoma®, learned through years of practice that much pain is the result of nerve entrapment by muscles hardened from chronic over-contraction. We are designed with most of our nerves purposely placed under muscles with the expectation that the layer of muscle will act as a cushion, but in this hardened state, the muscles actually irritate adjacent tissues. “Trigger points” are in fact irritated nerves under spastic muscle, and the number of nerve entrapment points is quite large and varied.
As the level of muscle tone/irritation increases, endorphins the body’s natural painkillers are triggered so that your level of sensitivity is actually decreased. Decreased sensitivity allows the spreading irritation of the hardened muscles to increase covertly; in other words, even though the irritation is actually increasing, decreased symptomatic sensitivity allows you to believe you are remaining the same or even improving. In advanced levels of irritation, sensitivity often drops so low that symptoms will disappear altogether. The mistaken assumption is then that “whatever was wrong finally went away.”
Healing modalities that set pain relief as the primary goal usually fall into the “endorphin trap”. Powerful endorphins cover up the symptoms, allowing temporary relief from the secondary problem (pain); but our primary goal is ultimately to identify and rectify the primary problem the underlying dysfunction thereby achieving the secondary goal of eliminating pain.
The purpose of NeuroSoma® limited pressure fingertip massage is to reestablish communications between the muscle and the brain by increasing nerve feedback sensitivity so the system can correct itself. Be aware that it is not possible to increase feedback sensitivity without also increasing sensitivity to irritation. (Sensitivity + irritation = discomfort) While this may be unpleasant, the discomfort acts as an internal guide to help both the client and the therapist locate the areas where irritation is present. Often, areas where there were no symptoms become places of greatest discomfort, and if pursued, will connect holistically to the original symptomatic areas. Many times the conscious discomfort in symptomatic areas is just the tip of the iceberg.
Remember: NeuroSoma® will inform your brain to allow your muscles to relax. But relaxation which eventually will decrease muscle irritability can begin only after your sensitivity to and conscious awareness of your primary problem has been increased (even though the problem itself is actually improving). As your muscles relax on ever-deeper layers, irritability will begin decreasing faster than sensitivity increases, until the treatment itself becomes increasingly pleasant. Until that time, your reward is a steady reduction of symptoms between treatments.