Dry Needling

What is Dry Needling?

Dry needling is a form of therapy in which fine needles are inserted into myofascial trigger points (painful knots in muscles), tendons, ligaments, or near nerves in order to stimulate a healing response in painful musculoskeletal conditions. Dry Needling is a modern intervention treatment of pain and dysfunction in musculoskeletal conditions such as: neck pain, shoulder impingement, tennis elbow, carpal tunnel syndrome, headaches, knee pain, shin splints, plantar fasciitis, or low-back pain.

It is called “Dry” Needling because there is no solution injected as with a hypodermic needle during a flu shot. With Dry Needling, the needle itself and the effects it produces within the tissue is the treatment.

Is Dry Needling Similar to Acupuncture?

Dry needling is not acupuncture. Dry Needling is based on Western medical research and principles whereas acupuncture is based on traditional Chinese medicine. The main similarity is that the same sterile, disposable solid filament needles are used.

What Types of Conditions Can Dry Needling Treat?

  • Neck/Back Pain
  • Shoulder Pain
  • Tennis/Golfers Elbow
  • Headaches
  • Hip and Gluteal Pain
  • Knee Pain
  • Achilles Tendonitis/Tendonosis
  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Sciatica
  • Muscular Strains/Ligament Sprains
  • Chronic Pain
  • Athletic Performance

Does Dry Needling Hurt?

You may or may not feel the insertion of the needle. The specific needle manipulation is intended to produce a local twitch response that can elicit a very brief (less than one second) painful response that some patients describe as a deep ache or cramping sensation. Again, the therapeutic response occurs with the elicitation of the local twitch response and is a desirable reaction.

What Can I Expect AfterMy Dry Needling Treatment?

Many patients report being sore after the treatment in both the area treated and the area of referred symptoms. Typically, this soreness lasts between a few hours up to two days. Soreness may be alleviated by applying ice or heat to the area and performing specific stretches for the treated muscle.


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