“Face to brain to heart to gut to brain to FACE.”
- Julia Worrall, RN
Humans have bidirectional neural communication between the face and the heart.
The facial nerve controls the majority of facial muscles.
All muscles in our body are innervated by nerves, which route all the way into the spinal cord and brain. The nerve connection is bidirectional, which means that the nerve is triggering muscle contractions based on brain signals (brain-to-muscle), while it at the same time communicates information on the current muscle state back to the brain (muscle-to-brain).
“The polyvagal theory claims that humans have physical reactions, such as cardiac and digestive changes, associated with their facial expressions.”
— Dr. Stephen Porges
“We can’t focus only on neurotransmitters when diagnosing and treating mental health.” - Dr. Resch
Headaches are among the most frequent pains we share in common, perhaps because they have so many triggers. Emotional stress, bad food choices or even poor posture can all end up in aching, throbbing, or tension pain in our heads. In the trigger point therapy field, we know the secret to relieving headaches often lies in treating the muscles that refer pain into the head. The most important of these muscles is the Upper Trapezius.
People suffering from such injuries may show up with complaints that can include numbness, tingling, burning, aching, and pins and needle in one or more of the following areas: shoulders, deltoids, biceps, triceps, forearms, wrists, palms, thumbs, the entire hand or any of the fingers.
Often the sensations that an individual is experiencing can be related to their cervical spine / neck. It is essential when diagnosing these conditions to find out where the pain actually stems from. The problem arises when the diagnoses and treatments are aimed at the area of complaint vs. the actual area of injury.
If we look plainly at the anatomy of the body, we will find that nerves originate from the spinal cord and travel out to their respective destinations. Nerves can get “caught” or entrapped in many different structures that they pass along the way.