WHAT IS DRY NEEDLING?
Dry needling is an invasive procedure where a fine needle or acupuncture needle is inserted into the skin and muscle. It is aimed at myofascial trigger points which are hyperirritable spots in skeletal muscle that are associated with a hypersensitive palpable nodule in a taut band. Dry needling can be carried out at superficial or deep tissue level. The needles are intended to trigger a natural twitch response and healing in the affected area.
Dry needling has been shown to immediately increase pressure pain threshold and range of motion, decrease muscle tone, and decrease pain in patients with musculoskeletal conditions. Dry needling may be indicated for myofascial pain with the presence of trigger points. Dry needling has also been shown to be beneficial for the management of strains, osteoarthritis and tendinopathies.
IMPROVE BLOOD FLOW
REDUCE MUSCLE TIGHTNESS
DOES IT HURT?
It is not painful as the needles are extremely fine (thinner than a strand of hair) and the needles do not go very deep. In certain areas where muscles are more superficial (closer to the skin) or in areas that have increased inflammation, there may be a slight, TEMPORARY discomfort with insertion.
To be clear, pain almost always goes off in less than a second. If it doesn’t, the needle is removed. Almost every insertion patients do not feel any sensation at all. There may also be a “twitch response” which is one way to know that the trigger point is being isolated. This may produce a dull ache or brief shock sensation.
As for bleeding, there is a chance for it to occur during the session. The occurrence of bleeding does not apply to all cases and statistically happens once in every 30 needles.
HOW CAN DRY NEEDLING HELP?
Trigger points are often formed due to injuries that cause the muscle fibers to get damaged. These damaged muscle fibers often go into a contracted and protective state, limiting the flow of oxygen-rich blood from reaching the injury site. This causes a lack of oxygen to the injured area, causing chemical imbalances which leads to pain, weakness, and reduced flexibility of the muscles.
Through dry needling, it elicits a local twitch response from the trigger point area, normalizing the chemical environment around it. This allows the muscle regeneration process to occur, reducing tension on the taut band of the muscles, allowing for a better flow of oxygen-rich blood to the area. This will help to relieve any pain or tightness you might feel, improve your movement and range of motion.