The human body has numerous musculoskeletal muscles that allow the host to do various movements without pain or discomfort. Each muscle group has tendons, muscles, ligaments, and connective tissues surrounding the skeletal joint and protecting the skeletal structure. Each muscle group in the body allows different functions, from turning the neck from side to side to enabling the legs to provide motion when walking. Now naturally, the body ages over time, which can lead to muscle weakness in the muscle groups and affect the connective tissues, or various disruptors can develop in a healthy body that can also affect the muscles and connective tissues. Fortunately, the multiple muscle groups and connective tissues are affected by overlapping risk profiles. In that case, there are many treatments and techniques that many pain specialists utilize to restore the body and relieve pain-like symptoms associated with musculoskeletal disorders. Today’s article examines connective tissues, how conditions can affect the connective tissues, and how the MET technique stretches or strengthens the body’s connective tissue. We provide information about our patients to certified medical providers that offer available therapy techniques like MET (muscle energy techniques) for individuals dealing with chronic conditions associated with disorders affecting the body’s connective tissues that can correlate and develop with overlapping pain profiles. We encourage each patient appropriately by referring them to our associated medical providers based on their diagnosis results. We accept that education is a spectacular way when asking our providers the most crucial questions at the patient’s acknowledgment. Dr. Alex Jimenez, D.C., assesses this information as an educational service. Disclaimer
What Are Connective Tissues?
The human body is a multiplex machine that is composed of many tissues that surround the skeletal joints and vital organs with the basic functions that the body produces. Research studies reveal that, as the name has implied, connective tissues in the body refer to the several different body tissues that connect and support the other tissues by binding them to the body. Now there are three different categories that connective tissue can be broken down into:
- Loose connective tissue
- Dense connective tissue
- Specialized connective tissues
These three different connective tissue categories have functions that allow the body to perform properly and provide support to the rest of the musculoskeletal system. The dense connective tissues make up the body’s tendons and ligaments that move the hands and feet while having a higher collagen fiber density. The loose connective tissues help keep the vital organs in place. And finally, the specialized connective tissues are composed of adipose tissues, cartilage, lymphoid tissues, etc. When the body begins to age naturally or is dealing with issues affecting the connective tissues, it can develop musculoskeletal disorders associated with the connective tissue.
Disorders Affecting The Connective Tissues
Have you been experiencing muscle pain or weakness in your body? Do your hands or feet feel tired? Or do you feel stiffness and pain in your joints? Many pain-like symptoms are associated with musculoskeletal disorders affecting the body’s connective tissues. As stated earlier, when the body begins to age naturally, the various muscles in the body can develop into musculoskeletal disorders associated with the connective tissues. Aging can affect connective tissue function as the cartilage from the specialized connective tissues has less elasticity and changes the proteoglycan both quantitatively and qualitatively, according to the book, “Clinical Applications of Neuromuscular Techniques,” written by Leon Chaitow, N.D., D.O., and Judith Walker DeLany, L.M.T. Additional research studies have revealed that environmental factors associated with the body’s immune system can affect the connective tissues. This is known as connective tissue disorder, and it can be comprised of numerous conditions that can affect the immune system and cause overlapping symptoms in the musculoskeletal system. This includes some of the following:
- Inflammation in the joints causes them to lock up
- Muscle weakness where myofascial entrapment affects the muscle fibers
- Vitamin deficiency
An Introduction To MET- Video
Have you been feeling stiffness in your muscles or joints? Does it hurt when you are bending over and lifting heavy objects? Or are you feeling tired constantly? When the body deals with these issues, it can affect more than the muscles and connective tissues. This can lead to symptoms of stiffness and aches in the joints while restricting the range of motion to the muscles. When this happens to the body, many pain specialists utilize MET (muscle energy technique) and relieve those symptoms. Studies reveal that MET is a manual treatment for soft tissue, helping mobilize the joints and stretch tight muscles and fascia to improve circulation to the connective tissues and drain the lymphatic system. The video above introduces how MET is used on the body.
The MET Technique On Connective Tissues
Research studies reveal that since the muscles and joints are being held together by connective tissues, using the MET technique allows pain specialists to stretch the muscles and joints to release tension and other symptoms associated with pain. When pain specialists use the MET technique on the body, it can help strengthen the weaker muscles while paying attention to how short the muscles are affecting the body. While the MET technique can help support the muscles with combined physical therapy, it can help stretch the tight muscles and overworked connective tissues. This allows the body to be restored and get back to normal. Many pain specialists like chiropractic care allow the MET technique to stretch the trapped connective tissues and free the body’s structures to correct postural imbalances.
The body’s connective tissues support each muscle, organ, and skeletal structure. When issues affect the body, the various muscle groups, and connective tissues start to develop overlapping symptoms associated with pain. When pain-like symptoms affect the body, many people will go to a pain specialist and be treated using the MET technique to restore the muscles and body and return to normal.
Chaitow, Leon, and Judith Walker DeLany. Clinical Applications of Neuromuscular Techniques. Churchill Livingstone, 2003.
Kamrani, Payvand, et al. “Anatomy, Connective Tissue.” In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL), StatPearls Publishing, 24 Jan. 2022, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK538534/.
Page, Phil. “Current Concepts in Muscle Stretching for Exercise and Rehabilitation.” International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Feb. 2012, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3273886/.
Rao, Vijay, and Simon Bowman. “Latest Advances in Connective Tissue Disorders.” Therapeutic Advances in Musculoskeletal Disease, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Aug. 2013, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3728978/.
Thomas, Ewan, et al. “The Efficacy of Muscle Energy Techniques in Symptomatic and Asymptomatic Subjects: A Systematic Review.” Chiropractic & Manual Therapies, U.S. National Library of Medicine, 27 Aug. 2019, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6710873/.
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The information herein on "To Stretch Or Strengthen Connective Tissues Using The MET Technique" is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional, or licensed physician, and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make your own healthcare decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified healthcare professional.
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