Common Injuries

Musicians therapy body map
1) TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint) Disorders
Cause
Excessive jaw clenching, – violin, viola or due to general tension.
 
Symptoms
Pain where the jaw joins the skull in front of the ears.
 
Treatment
TMJ release, massage
2) Embouchure Problems

Cause
Muscle strain in muscles around the mouth

Symptoms
Focal dystonia, or loss of muscular control – wind/ brass

Treatment
Massage

3) Neck Pain/ Tension
Cause
Whip lash, general muscular tension from nerves, bad posture, holding heavy instruments under chin or by arms.
 
Symptoms
Constant ache, or on moving/holding.
 
Treatment
Massage, releasing and stretching techniques
4) Thoracic Inlet Syndrome
Cause
Impingement of veins, arteries and median and ulnar nerves between the collar bone and first rib. Usually due to bad posture, instrument or heavy bag holding.
 
Symptoms
Numbness, tingling, cold hands, pain and weakness.
 
Treatment
Releasing the thoracic inlet
5) Shoulder Impingement Syndrome
Cause
Damage to rotator cuff muscles by prolonged holding of arm at or above shoulder level.
 
Symptoms
Pain felt on raising the arm, or a general, internal ache.
 
Treatment
Gentle manipulation, shoulder energy re-evaluation, remedial exercises
6) Medial Epicondylitis
Cause
Result of overuse from forearm flexor muscles from gripping objects with the wrist bent in a downward motion.
Symptoms
Pain on the inside of the elbow with the palm facing upwards.
Treatment
Icing – if inflammation is present; otherwise massage and stretching.
7) Lateral Epicondylitis

Cause
Over use of hand extensor muscles by bending hand and wrist backwards.
Symptoms
Pain and inflammation of the tendon at the outside of the elbow. (with the palm facing upwards) Often affects pianists, and tennis players.
Treatment
Massage, stretching, cross training.

8) Tendinitis & Tenosynovitis

Cause
An overuse injury , with muscular demands that stretch or bend tendons around joints.
Symptoms
Local pain and irritation of the tendon (tendinitis) or inflammation of the sheath through which the tendon passes.(tenosynovitis)
Treatment
Rest, icing until the inflammation has passed, massage to associated muscle, and to reduce scar tissue on the tendon.

9) Thumb Pain
Or De Quervain’s syndrome
Cause
Positional and over use injury of thumb when fully extended, mainly as a result of holding an instrument for long periods.
Symptoms
Pain may travel up the forearm.
Treatment
Massage, stretching, rest
10) Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Cause
Compression of the median nerve in the wrist from inflamed tendons. This nerve supplies the thumb and first three fingers. Maybe an over use injury or due to trauma to the wrist.
Symptoms
Pain, numbness and tingling of the hands, thumb, index and middle fingers.
Treatment
Rest, re- alignment, general massage of forearm, remedial exercises.

11) Cubital Tunnel Syndrome
Cause
Compression of the ulnar nerve at the inside elbow, from over use of the little finger and sideways motion of the hand.
Symptoms
Pain in the inside elbow (with the palm faced upwards), and numbness or tingling in the little finger, ring finger, back or side of the hand.
Treatment
Treatment – massage, stretching, remedial exercises.
12) Back Pain

Cause
Prolonged bad posture, with unequal strains and demands on the different sides of the body. Also weak core and abdominal strength.
Symptoms
Pain and dysfunction dependent on how chronic.
Treatment
Postural analysis, Alexander technique, proper back exercises, massage, stretching.

13) Sciatica

Cause
Irritation and compression of the sciatic nerve as it leaves the spine in the low back and travels down the leg. Will occur with bad sitting posture, too much driving, out of alignment in the pelvis and lack of hip mobility/ flexibility.
Symptoms
Pain in the legs and buttocks.
Treatment
Massage, releasing the compression, remedial exercises, stretching.