A Modern Take on Acupuncture
Dealing with muscular pain every day can be miserable. It causes you to miss out on what life has to offer. Pain can make it difficult to do things like picking up your kids, exercise, or sleep. If you have been suffering from chronic muscular pain without any relief, dry needling may be right for you.
What is Dry Needling?
Dry needling is also known as intramuscular stimulation (IMS) and trigger point dry needling (TDN). It is a safe, effective, and efficient treatment used to:
- Relax myofascial trigger points.
- Restore normal muscle tones, muscle length, coordination, function, and strength.
It involves the insertion and repetitive manipulation of a “dry” solid filament needle in a trigger point to produce an involuntary spinal cord reflex, also known as a local twitch response (LTR). This process results in long-lasting muscle relaxation due to the release of tight muscles or activation of weak muscles.
Deactivation of these trigger points can bring you immediate relief from your painful symptoms. The therapist can immediately begin working to retrain the muscles to work with the newly gained pain-free range of motion.
Dry Needling Vs. Acupuncture
Dry needling is like acupuncture in the sense that a dry solid filament needle is inserted and manipulated under the skin to release endorphins and serum cortisol for pain relief. The needle used closely resembles an acupuncture needle. The main difference is that dry needling is based on western neuroanatomy and modern scientific study of the musculoskeletal and nervous systems.
Does Dry Needling Hurt?
Dry needling itself does not hurt. The needles are very thin, and you do not typically feel much when they are put in place. However, you may experience some soreness from the muscle’s twitch response. You may also feel sore for a few days after the treatment as if you had worked out recently.1
What Does Dry Needling Therapy Treat?
Dry Needling has successfully been used to treat a variety of conditions including:
- Head and Neck Pain – including whiplash and headaches/migraines, degenerative joint disease, degenerative disk disease, or osteoarthritis.
- Otological (Ear) and Ophthalmological (Eye) Pain – including tinnitus and eye strain.
- Dental (Teeth) and Orthodontic (Jaw and Occlusal) Pain – including cavities, temporomandibular joint (TMJ) dysfunction, tooth impaction, and root problems.
- Shoulder Pain – including rotator cuff muscle tears, bursitis, adhesive capsulitis (frozen shoulder), tendonitis, and impingement syndrome.
- Elbow Pain – including lateral epicondylitis (tennis elbow) and medial epicondylitis (golfer’s elbow)
- Hand and Wrist Pain – including gamekeeper’s thumb, DeQuervain’s syndrome, carpal tunnel syndrome, degenerative joint disease, and osteoarthritis.
- Back and Hip Pain – including lumbar degenerative disc disease, arthritic changes, and herniated discs.
- Knee Pain – including degenerative joint disease or osteoarthritis.
- Shin / Ankle / Foot Pain – including shin splints, gout, metatarsalgia, and Morton’s neuroma.
- Plantar Fasciitis (Heel Pain)
- Acute and Chronic Tendonitis
- Athletic and Sports-related Overuse Injuries
- Post-surgical Pain
- Post-traumatic Injuries, Motor Vehicle Accidents (MVA), and Work-related Injuries
- Other Chronic Pain Conditions – including myofascial pain and myofascial pain syndrome (MPS)
Effective pain relief with dry needling at Comprehensive Physical Therapy
Our physical therapists at CPT are trained in all types of physical therapy treatments. We can develop a comprehensive treatment plan that will reduce pain and get you up and moving again.
References: 1. https://healthtalk.unchealthcare.org/