IASTM stands for Instrument-Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization. It is a manual therapy technique used by healthcare professionals to treat soft tissue injuries and musculoskeletal conditions. IASTM involves the use of specialized instruments to effectively assess and treat soft tissue dysfunctions.
The instruments used in IASTM are typically made of stainless steel or other materials with smooth edges. They are designed to apply controlled pressure and friction to the skin, fascia, muscles, tendons, and ligaments.
During an IASTM session, the practitioner applies the instrument to the affected area and applies specific strokes or techniques to the tissue. The goal is to detect and treat areas of tissue restriction, scar tissue, adhesions, or areas of inflammation.
During a chiropractic adjustment, the chiropractor will use their hands or specialized instruments to deliver a quick, precise thrust to the targeted area. This can result in a popping or cracking sound, which is caused by the release of gas from the joint fluid. The adjustment aims to restore proper movement to the joint, reducing restrictions, tension, or misalignments that may be causing pain or interfering with nerve function.
IASTM is believed to provide several benefits:
- Improved Tissue Function: IASTM helps break down scar tissue and adhesions, which can result from injuries, surgeries, or chronic conditions. By applying the instruments to the affected area, IASTM promotes the remodeling of tissue, improves blood flow, and enhances tissue healing.
- Pain Reduction: Soft tissue dysfunctions and restrictions can cause pain and discomfort. IASTM aims to alleviate pain by reducing tissue restrictions, improving tissue mobility, and stimulating the nervous system response.
- Enhanced Range of Motion: Soft tissue restrictions and adhesions can limit joint mobility and range of motion. Through the application of IASTM techniques, tissue restrictions can be released, leading to improved joint mobility, flexibility, and overall functional movement.
- Injury Prevention and Rehabilitation: IASTM can be used both as a preventive measure and as part of a rehabilitation program. By addressing tissue restrictions and imbalances, it can help prevent injuries and promote efficient healing and recovery after an injury.