2 Tests to Determine if You Have TP’s in Your Spenius Capitis:Test #1: Chin to Chest Test
PASS Not PASSING
For this test, tuck your chin to your chest without opening your mouth. A passing result is when the chin touches the chest with the mouth closed. A not passing result is when the chin does not reach the chest with the mouth closed. If this is the case, use your fingers to measure the distance between your chest and your chin. If two fingers or more fit in between, you are highly likely to have myofascial trigger points in your Splenius Cervicis.
Test #2: Head Rotation Test
PASS Not PASSING
Standing or sitting upright, turn your head to the side as far as you are able without straining or causing pain. A Passing result is when the head turns without pain far enough so that the nose is over the shoulder (80-90 degrees rotation, as shown). A Not Passing result occurs when the head is unable to rotate far enough or there is pain while trying to turn the head.
3-Step Simple Self-Care Remedies
The myofascial health of your Splenius Capitis Muscle is in your hands! If any of the tests above were positive for myofascial trigger points, the following self-care instructions can benefit you significantly. Spending a few minutes a day can reduce headache, migraine pain, eye pain and visual disturbance, as well as improve the structural health of your neck.
Step 1: Warming Up with Moist Heat (very important for headaches!)
Heat works wonders for the Splenius Cervicis. Perform a good gentle stretch in the shower, as depicted here before beginning your self-care compression. Tuck your chin to your chest and rotate the head to the opposite side of the eye pain. Let the water fall on the neck and relax the muscles. NOTE: Some sufferers of migraines find heat intolerable. This is often due to entrapment of a suboccipital nerve by a muscle called the Splenius Capitis. If heat aggravates your pain, cold may be a better solution until you have resolved the trigger points causing the entrapment. Come in for an appointment and we will help you with this resolution.
Step 2: Compression
The best tool by far for treating the Splenius Cervicis is the Backnobber.
This tool works fabulously for trigger points in the Splenius Cervicis. It is often very effective to put the muscle on the stretch during compression. You may want to start by simply tucking the chin to the chest and compressing the full length of the muscle. Search for tender spots and compress to comfortable level 8 – 10 seconds per tender spot or approximately 2-3 full breaths in and out. Ideally, you will also add rotation away from the side you are treating, as shown, for a most effective compression release.
Step 3: Stop Activating It!
Unfortunately, modern living often puts the Splenius Cervicis
in a compromised position. Two of the most common aggravating postures include squinting
at a computer screen (as shown) and sleeping on your stomach with your head turned to one side (as shown). If you avoid these postures, you will reduce the likelihood of suffering from headaches in your eye and the visual disturbances of the migraine complex.
There are so many suffering these symptoms unnecessarily. Please pass this information on to anyone you know who is in pain!