Muscle tone is a NEUROLOGIC phenomenon.
It depends on the nervous system working without interference.
The basic unit of neurological function is the neurological impulse which leads to axonal depolarisation. It mostly originates in the muscle spindle cells and periodontal ligaments, tissues in the mouth which, uniquely, spontaneously generate afferent input (electrical signals TO the central nervous system in the spine and brain).
At least 90% of our muscular activity is actually quite unconscious and is mostly controlled by reflexes.
Muscle spindle afferents are the primary source of the myotatic reflex and it is the input from these afferents that ascend to the brain as well as moderate and mediate motor neuron output via the propriospinal tracts. Thus, muscle spindle afferents are the primary source of body position sense and are an integral part of control and regulation of muscle tone, as well as central nervous system function.
If you want to change muscle tone quickly, the most effective way is to change afferent input. In this video you can see that changing input via the periodontal ligaments strengthened this patient’s lumbar extensors, allowing him to bend and stand up again with little to no pain. Removing the offending crown allowed for full recovery.
Afferent input is the common denominator of all therapies. It explains why they work when they do and the hidden reasons why they don’t work when they should. With a thorough understanding of afferent input in your practice, your goal to make your patients better faster and more easily becomes a reality.
One of the tell-tale signs of a slipped disc is a patient who has to use their arms walking up their thighs in order to stand up.
This happens because a slipped disc is often caused by a weakness of the muscles that allow us to stand up, particularly the gluteal muscles.
You can clearly see this patient using his arms to help him stand up.
You can also see the dramatic return to strength and normal mobility as he changes the afferent input he gets by biting on a gold crown.