Myofascial release is a rehabilitation treatment that can relieve pain and relax muscles and tissue. Myo is the prefix for muscle, and fascial refers to the smooth tough tissue that covers them. When muscles are injured or strained, both the muscles and fascia tighten, causing pain. Myofascial release is a technique used by physical and occupational therapists to stretch tight and sore areas to relieve pain, restore tissue health, increase motion, and improve function. Myofascial release is a form of soft tissue manipulation; it is not the same thing as massage.
Your doctor can refer you to a physical or occupational therapist that provides myofascial release. At your initial evaluation, your therapist will ask you about your symptoms and medical history. The therapist will examine your posture and joint movement. Tell your therapist where you experience pain. Your therapist will be able to feel areas that are tight and possibly cause discomfort.
Your therapist will apply gentle pressure and stretch to restricted areas. When the tissue relaxes, the therapist will apply an increased amount of pressure and stretch. This process is repeated until an area is completely relaxed. You may need more than one treatment session.