What is Dry Needling?
Dry Needling is a process which involves the insertion of acupuncture needles into muscles in order to alleviate pain and stimulate healing. Generally this technique is used in the treatment of injuries and their associated pain. The filiform needle is inserted directly into the myofacial trigger point which acts to increase circulation and thus speed up the repair of the surrounding tissue. Often, we will attach the needle to electrical stimulation to get a good clinical effect.
Dry needling works at many levels. It has a mechanical effect, by stimulating the fibres in the muscle that have contracted, it causes the fibres to release and the muscle to relax. It has a neurological effect, by placing the needle directly into the muscle it stimulates the surrounding nerves which then causes the brain to focus on that area, and start the repair process.Lastly it has a biochemical effect, by causing a tiny amount of cell damage (simply by inserting the needle) in a very specific location, causes the body to start the repair process. Part of this process is to increase circulation, and with it all the good cells which promote the healing process.Dry needling has been found useful for chronic inflammation conditions, such as tennis elbow, golfers elbow, plantar fasciitis, tendonitis and bursitis both in the hip and shoulder. It can also be used to treat chronic muscle tension such as “computer neck,” as well as acute muscle strains and tears.
We use dry needling as part of many treatment plans for our patients. We have had great success in treating many injuries arises from auto accidents, work injuries, sports, repetitive stress, as well as, those pains that seem to just show up out of the blue and have no causal incident.
What is a trigger point?
A trigger point is an area of muscle which has been over exerted, this area is commonly referred to as a knot. Patients will find that the pain is localised around this area. Dry Needling acts to release this knot. The needle insertion will have some what of an anaesthetic effect on the trigger point and is therefore a useful method of pain relief.
What are the benefits of Dry Needling?
Dry needling has a number of benefits which include:
- Pain relief
- Increased circulation of blood
- Promotion of healing
- Increased range of motion
- Increased strength and functionality of the muscle
- Return of proper biomechanics
Does Dry Needling hurt?
Generally Dry Needling is pain free. The needles used are extremely thin and when inserted properly should barely be felt. Patients may report a slight twitch response upon insertion which can cause a moment of tingling, or a reproduction of the pain they are experiencing in that muscle.
If you think dry needling may help you, or would like to discuss its benefits with our chiropractor, please call 480.633.3399 or make and appointment online.
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