Types of Muscle Spasm and the reason why we have them...
By Kevin Donka
1. PROTECTIVE/HEALING SPASM – If a muscle is injured, it may contract to keep from being passively stretched and injured further. It is actually protective in this way. In addition, the spasm increases the metabolism in the muscle, increases circulation and speeds healing.
2. TOXIC SPASM – If there is a build up of toxic substances in a muscle (like lactic acid after a workout, blood or if a foreign substance has been injected into the muscle), it may go into spasm to increase the metabolism and circulation in order to more quickly clear the toxin.
3. COMPENSATORY SPASM – Here are several examples of these;
A. PROTECTIVE SPASM – A muscle may spasm to restrict movement in an injured or inflamed joint so that it is not as easily irritated and to speed healing.
B. REFLEX SPASM – This is another form of protective spasm.
C. NUTRITIONAL DEFICIENCY SPASM – An example of this might be a calcium deficiency that causes nighttime cramping in the legs.
D. NEUROLOGICAL SPASM – Subluxation (Loss of alignment or function in your spine causing a partial disconnection between your brain and body) may cause an abnormal amount of mental impulse to be sent to the muscle and it may go into spasm.
E. BALANCING SPASM – This spasm is to compensate for a structural imbalance (like an anatomically short leg on one side) or a muscle weakness somewhere else. The primary weakness may be due to disuse, healing from injury/surgery or possibly because of altered mental impulse caused by subluxation.
Whenever you attempt to reduce or remove a primary muscle spasm, whether through medications, creams, ice, heat, stretching, physiotherapy or any other means, I would like to know one thing – Which of these primary healing and protective mechanisms are you attempting to stop – and WHY? If it is a compensatory spasm you are addressing, why are you bothering? Just take care of the primary problem and the spasm will disappear on its own!
Instead of trying to second guess your Innate Intelligence, why not just remove the CAUSE of the spasm and allow this Intelligence to release the spasm at the right time and in the right amount, while always providing and allowing the proper amount of protection?
You see contrary to popular belief, there is no such thing as “just a spasm!” Your body’s Innate Wisdom knows when it needs to send a muscle into spasm. This also means it knows when and how to release that spasm – BUT THERE MUST BE AN OPEN LINE OF COMMUNICATION BETWEEN THE BRAIN AND BODY FOR THAT TO OCCUR!
Getting checked and adjusted if necessary on a regular basis ensures that your nerve system is free and clear to transmit any and all incoming and outgoing messages between the brain and the body.
There is another thing to consider here as well. As your constructive and healing Life Force is once again liberated with an adjustment, it will heal whatever most needs to heal NEXT in order for your WHOLE BODY to move to the next level of wholeness. This may be the muscle that is in spasm or it may be something else. If you do not trust that this is true and you apply some kind of “treatment” to the muscle, you will direct the healing forces to go where YOU believe they most need to go (i.e., the muscle) and actually INTERFERE with what your body’s Innate Wisdom is trying to accomplish OVERALL during the healing process. This may in fact bring relief of symptoms, but what harm has it done in the long run?
The point of this article is not to turn you into a physiologist, but to help you see the incredible miracle that you have inside of you – your Innate Life Force! People are always telling me about the miracles they have seen once they are under chiropractic care. Please allow me to share one I experienced myself just this morning.
I had some Cheerios for breakfast this morning. Do you know what has happened to them by now? Well, I don’t know EXACTLY what has happened to them, but it is entirely possible that they are becoming new spleen tissue right now – How exciting! This is a miracle! EVERYTHING that happens in your body is a miracle – not just the “big” things - and it’s all because of the incredible Perfection that has been placed within you.
You may ask why other chiropractors apply treatments to reduce or eliminate muscle spasms. I cannot speak for them. All I know is that we have a saying in our office –
ADJUST IT AND TRUST IT!