Massage is the manipulation of soft tissue of the body including muscles, connective tissues, tendons, ligaments and joints. There are various types of massage techniques which can be used during chronic and acute phases of injury. Massage increase blood flow bringing nutrients and oxygen to the muscle thus aids healing.
- Alleviate / reduce pain
- Break down adhesions and reduce scar tissue
- Improve proprioception
- Improve sensory awareness
- Increase circulation and aid lymphatic drainage
- Increase proprioception
- Maintain, restore or improve joint mobility
- Maintain, restore or improve muscle mobility
- Reduce muscle spasms and tension
Myofascial Release (MFR)
‘Myo’ means muscle and ‘fascia’ means band. Fascia refers to a sheet of connective tissue, primarily collagen that runs throughout the body and surrounds every muscle, bone, nerve blood vessel, and organ to the cellular level. In healthy conditions the fascia is strong yet relaxed with a high degree of flexibility. This provides a supportive, cushioning mechanism that allows us to move safely without restriction or pain. As a result of physical trauma and poor posture, fascia scars and hardens to create a fascial restriction which contribute towards pain and altered gait. MFR is very different to that of massage in that it is a sustained, gentle, pressure held for a significant period of time allowing the fascia to elongate naturally and return to its normal resting length.
Trigger Point Release
When Myofascia is stressed from trauma or overuse it can tear and adhere together creating a Trigger Point. Trigger points are hyperirritable areas within the fascia that surround skeletal muscles characterised by palpable nodules in taut bands of muscles fibres, and a twitch response / spasm elicited on stimulation. The painful point leads to tenderness, increased muscle stiffness and reduced range of motion. Trigger point release therapy can be manual or via phototherapy and it aims to decrease the muscle spasm and in turn relieve pain and restore mobility.
Ultrasound Therapy (UST) is the use of high frequency sound waves that are not audible to the human ear. The waves are created by vibration of crystals within the head of the probe, working at a cellular level to transmit energy into the injured tissue. UST has both thermal and non-thermal benefits and is very effective in promoting healing of soft tissue injuries. It stimulates tissue regeneration, promotes synthesis and increases the tensile strength of collagen, which in turn promotes better quality and stronger healing. When used thermally, UST can increase the extensibility of structures such as ligaments, tendons and scar tissue. Additionally, it can relieve muscle spasms, decrease pain, increase circulation and be very beneficial to encourage correct fibre realignment and reduce chronic scar tissues and adhesions.
PMFT (Pulsed Magnetic Field Therapy)
When cells are damaged their potentials change which results in swelling and pain. The application of PMFT has, through research been shown to help the body to restore normal potentials at an accelerated rate, thus aiding healing. PMFT influences the structure of the cellular membrane by influencing the movement of ions and charged particles across the cell membrane to promote normal chemical balance.
PMFT hasmultiple therapeutic benefits including:
- Aids cellular regeneration
- Improves cartilage quality
- Reduces oedema, swelling and bruising
- Enhances wound repair
- Reduces pain
- Encourages bone healing / fracture repair
- Reduces pain for chronic and acute injuries
- Aids nerve growth and repair
LASER / Phototherapy (Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation)
Laser therapy is a treatment that utilizes specific wavelengths of light to stimulate the cells mitochondria which in turn helps to accelerate the healing process. Jenny has both blue and red light lasers. Blue light phototherapy is designed specifically for the application to infected wounds due to its antibacterial effect.
Red Light Phototherapy benefits include:
- Promote and enhance wound repair
- Stimulate healing
- Pain relief
- Effective for soft tissue injuries such as tendon lesions
- Effective for joint problems such as arthritis
NEMS (Neuromuscular Stimulation)
NEMS is the elicitation of muscle contraction using electric impulses. It is used for wasted muscle to increase muscle bulk and strengthen damaged or weak muscles. NEMS is generally used in conjunction with a prescribed exercise plan which works together to increase muscle mass and strength.
TENS (Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation)
TENS is a method of pain relief involving the use of a mild electrical current that works by stimulating the sensory nerves. The electrical impulses can reduce the pain signals going to the spinal cord and brain, which then help to reduce pain. It is also believed that TENS stimulates the release of endorphins, which are the body's natural painkillers. It is easy to administer for the owner and particularly effective for chronic problems.
Stretching and Range of Motion (RoM)
Limited range of motion refers to a joint that has a reduction in its ability to move. The reduced motion may be a mechanical problem with the specific joint or it may be caused by injury or diseases such as arthritis. Pain, swelling, and stiffness associated with arthritis can limit the range of motion of a particular joint and impair function and limit the ability for the animal to perform usual daily activities. The goal of Active and Passive RoM exercises is to improve or maintain range of motion while decreasing pain, swelling and stiffness. These techniques are beneficial to all animals’ in particular elderly animals or post-surgery. Stretching encourages your muscles to lengthen and promotes flexibility, joint range or motion and also injury prevention.
Exercise and Rehabilitation Programmes
Owners will be prescribed home stretching and exercise programmes to suit their lifestyle whilst achieving effective results for their pet.
Programmes are designed to:
- Maintain or increase joint and muscle range of motion
- Improve flexibility
- Strength the animal’s musculo-skeletal system to prevent injury
- Improve proprioception and sensory awareness
- Improve gait, symmetry and function