Fibromyalgia, Trigger Points in the Neck Cause a Wide Variety of Symptoms

Trigger points in the neck can cause dizziness and vertigo in many people with fibromyalgia. 

These trigger points can distort your perception and sense of balance, causing you to drop things, trip over things. 

Many symptoms involving the head and neck, ears, eyes, nose and throat may be due to trigger points in the neck. 

In this publication I will explain:  where are these trigger points, what symptoms cause and how to self-treat them.

What are the trigger points?

In simple terms, a trigger point is a knot that forms in the muscle and sends pain to other areas of the body. Activation points cause the muscle to become tighter and shorten. 

When the muscles shorten, they can not perform the full range of motion, altering the way you move, sit or stand. 

This leads to problems of strength and flexibility, creating more trigger points. Research suggests that the pain of fibromyalgia is mainly due to myofascial trigger points. 

Therefore, the treatment of trigger points will help control the pain associated with fibromyalgia.

Trigger points in the neck that cause dizziness

The trigger points in the neck that can cause dizziness are found in the sternocleidomastoid muscle (MSE). The ECM is a large muscle along the front on both sides of the neck. 

It is composed of two interconnected muscle bands. These muscle bands start from the mastoid bone behind the ear. One band connects to the sternum (sternum) and the other is connected to the clavicle. 

The sternal band is located on the upper part of the clavicle. The main functions of the ECM muscles are to turn the head from side to side and flex it downwards. 

The sternocleidomastoid also helps maintain a stable position of the head during other movements of the body. 

Any uncomfortable position can create trigger points. Another function of the ECM muscle is to raise the sternum when you inhale. The muscle can become overloaded if it does not breathe properly. The ECM also helps chew and swallow.

Symptoms of sternocleidomastoid trigger points

The effects of sternocleidomastoid trigger points can be surprisingly widespread. 

They include:

  • dizziness, vertigo and imbalance
  • blurred vision, double vision, excessive tearing, reddening of the eyes, drooping eyelid and eye contractions
  • hearing loss, tinnitus (buzzing, buzzing or ringing in the ears)
  • migraine, sinus headache
  • sickness
  • sinus congestion or nasal drainage
  • chronic cough, sore throat
  • neck stiffness
  • cold sweat on the forehead§ continuous hay fever or cold symptoms
  • difficulty swallowing

What causes sternocleidomastoid trigger points?

Activation points can be created by postures that keep the ECM contracted to keep the head in position, for example, by looking at a computer screen or driving. 

Keeping the head turned to the side, or keeping the head back for prolonged periods of time, is sure to cause problems. 

Breathing from the chest instead of the belly can also overload the ECM muscle.

Here is a list of activities that can create ECM trigger points:

§ General activities

§ Keep your head to one side

§ Head forward stance

§ Hold the phone with your shoulder

§ Lift a lot of weight

§ Falls and lash effect

§ A short leg, scoliosis or uncomfortable postures

§ Stress and muscle tension

§ Chronic cough or asthma

§ Breathing from the chest

Treatment of sternocleidomastoid trigger points

The muscle group ECM may contain seven trigger points. The sternal division usually has 3-4 trigger points, spaced along its length, while the division of the clavicle has 2-3 trigger points.


If you gently pinch the sternocleidomastoid, instead of pressing it against the side of the neck, it will stay away from the arteries.

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