What Is Graston Therapy?
Soft tissue injuries are common especially if you engage in high-impact sports. Although most people recover fairly quickly, the injuries can cause scar tissues.
After an injury, healthy tissues may get destroyed leading to the formation of scar tissues. These are thick and fibrous tissue that replace the damaged ones. Scar tissues aren’t as painful in the early stages because at times the nerves also get destroyed too. However, with time, you will develop severe pain as the nerve endings begin to regenerate.
Graston technique or therapy helps to break and loosen the scar tissues.
The Graston Technique
Graston therapy is a patented and evidence-based form of IASTM or Instrument-Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization. IASTM utilizes unique and specially designed stainless steel instruments to detect and treat scar tissues as well as soft tissue restriction.
GT differs from other forms of IASTM as it uses six tools designed with beveled angles and edges to detect tissue restriction. The instruments come in various sizes and shapes that work on different body parts.
Graston therapy, when combined with appropriate exercise leads to the restoration of movement and function of soft tissues.
How Does It Work?
The tools break down the scar tissue underneath through;
- Breaking down scar tissues associated with soft tissue trauma
- Stretching connective tissue thus reducing restriction and rearranging soft tissue structure
- Increases blood flow and promoting the natural healing process.
Graston therapy is used differently based on the type of injury and goal of the treatment, but in general, the GT works to able to detect the scar tissue, reduce pain, increase movement and amplify the restoration process.
Where Can You Get GT?
The Graston therapy instruments cannot be purchased from any vendor. The GT is a multi-disciplinary technique that is available to licensed professionals such as Canadian massage therapists, chiropractors, physical therapists, medical physician among others.
Only clinicians who have gone through the basic Graston Technique training are qualified to use the instruments to treat their patients. At Centennial Wellness, we are licensed to offer Graston Therapy in Calgary.
Who Can Benefit?
GT benefits many conditions such;
- Achilles tendonitis
- Sport injuries
- Tennis and golfer’s elbow
- Post-surgical fibrosis
- Plantar fasciitis
- Repetitive strain disorders
- Back pain
It is important to note that not everyone is ideal for Graston therapy. People with high blood pressure, pregnant women, those with severe fractures or taking blood thinners are not good candidates for GT.
If you have any of the above-mentioned conditions, contact our doctor, they will help you choose an alternative treatment suitable for you.
What to Expect?
When you visit our Clinic, our physiotherapist will examine you and create a treatment program to address the dysfunction of the injury. They will then use the tools to detect and manipulate the scar tissue to promote healing.
Before each session, you will need a warm-up to make the muscles flexible. The physiotherapist will incorporate balance and strength exercises after the therapy to promote movement.
The length of the therapy varies depending on the severity of the injury, but on average, you may need one or two sessions per week for five weeks. For chronic injuries, the treatment may take longer
You may feel discomfort based on your current healing process and the instrument used. Furthermore, some patients may experience bruising in the injured area.
Benefits of Graston Therapy?
The core benefit of Graston therapy is pain relief, but it also;
- Provides faster recovery and helps you regain back your normal activities such as swimming, running, working among others
- You will enjoy less treatment time. The therapy takes four to five weeks
- It’s pain-free. Though you may experience a little discomfort, it will last only for a short time. Additionally, it resolves chronic pain helping you ditch the costly anti-inflammatory medications.
- It activates nerve fibers and body sensory receptors that help to repair and strengthen your muscles.
Scar tissue is not painful in the initial stages, but if left untreated, they will cause severe pain and discomfort. Call us as soon as an injury occurs to prevent any further complications.