Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization (IASTM) is a manual therapy technique that uses specialized tools to identify and treat soft tissue dysfunction. The tools are typically made of metal, plastic, or bone and have various shapes and sizes to suit different areas of the body.
IASTM is based on the principles of myofascial release, which involves manipulating the fascia and muscle tissue to reduce pain, improve mobility, and enhance performance. The goal of IASTM is to break up adhesions, scar tissue, and other abnormalities in the soft tissue, allowing the body to heal more effectively.
During an IASTM treatment, the therapist will use the tools to apply pressure and friction to the affected area. This can cause some discomfort, but it should not be overly painful. The therapist will work slowly and methodically, adjusting the pressure and angle of the tools as needed to achieve the desired results.
IASTM is often used to treat a variety of soft tissue injuries and conditions, such as tendinitis, sprains and strains, and myofascial pain syndrome. It can also be used as a preventative measure to improve mobility and reduce the risk of injury.
Overall, IASTM is a safe and effective manual therapy technique that can help improve soft tissue function and promote healing. It is important to receive IASTM treatment from a trained and licensed healthcare professional to ensure proper technique and safety.
Below are 5 reasons to consider trying a IASTM treatment:
1. Patient can feel the abnormal tissue texture. When the instrument is used, you can feel the ripples of the tissue, which indicates to both the patient and the therapist, that they are focusing on where the problem is.
2. Restore gliding between tissue layers to allow better motion. If your tissue layers stick together, you have a lesser range of motion and cannot move properly.
3. Enhanced blood perfusion. Blood flow can’t get into the muscle structure when a muscle is tight. Increasing your blood flow will allow your body to better heal itself.
4. Realigns scar tissue from trauma and surgery. Like when you try to get your fingers out of a Chinese finger trap, and the fibers moving in different directions make the trap tighter on your fingers instead; IASTM can help realign the fibers of your scar tissue, so they don’t get stuck and strangle the injured area.
5. Decreased treatment time and reduced need for anti-inflammatory medication. IASTM treatments promotes good blood circulation, and with that new blood flow, there are new oxygen cells helping the healing process.
IASTM treatments can also be used on injuries such as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Plantar Fasciitis, Tennis Elbow, Shin Splints, achy joints, etc.
Mike at Merrill Physical Therapy is professionally trained in the IASTM technique and can help you better manage your pain. Give us a call at (715) 539-2740 to schedule your appointment today!