What is Dry Needling?
Dry needling is a therapy using an acupuncture-like needle to treat trigger points in muscles, scar tissue restrictions, tight or improperly functioning muscles. The term “Dry” Needling is used because the therapy does not inject any fluid into the body as with a flu shot or vaccination. The beneficial effect is a result of the stimulation caused by the needle in the tissue.
How Does it Work?
Dry Needling causes increased blood flow. This helps to remove pain causing agents such as Bradykinin, Substance P, CGRP along with toxins and waste from the tissue. It also neutralizes the pH in the tissue. Often a damaged tissue will become more acidic. The increased blood flow also brings in more nutrients to help promote healing. Dry needling also causes relaxation of hypertonic muscle fibers and activation of latent fibers. Within a week’s time dry needling with causes regeneration of damaged neuromuscular junctions (places where the nerve and muscles communicate).
Is Dry Needling Acupuncture?
No. While they used the same needle and may look the same, they are different. Acupuncture is based on traditional Chinese Medicine. Dry needling is based on Western Medical Research. Dry needling is targeting the function of the neuromusculoskeletal (Nerves, muscles and joints) system and acupuncture attempts to balance “Chi” or the energy flow through the body.
Does Dry Needling Hurt?
People sometimes feel the insertion of the needle, but this typically is no worse than a mosquito bite. When the needle hits the trigger point, there is often a quick (beneficial) twitch. This twitch can cause a brief (less than a second) pinch.
Will Dry Needling Make Me Sore?
Most of the people feel immediate improvement. Others will have soreness for a couple of hours and then no pain at all. Very few (less than 10%) have prolonged soreness.
What is Dry Needling Used For?
- Neck/Back Pain
- Shoulder Pain
- Tennis/Golfers Elbow
- Hip and Gluteal Pain
- Knee Pain
- Achilles Tendonitis/Tendonosis
- Plantar Fasciitis
- Muscular Strains/Ligament Sprains
- Chronic Pain
- Athletic Performance