Dry Needling is a highly effective form of Physical therapy for the treatment of a multitude of musculoskeletal and neuromuscular conditions. Dry needling is based on neuro-anatomy and modern scientific study of the musculoskeletal and neuromuscular systems. A very fine filament needle is inserted through the skin and into the deeper tissues that are considered trigger points to your pain. The proposed mechanism of action for Dry Needling is the creation of a micro lesion within the pathological tissue, breaking up shortened tissues, inhibiting a reflex arc from the nervous system to the tissue, inducing a mild inflammatory response, and centrally mediating the pain. This mechanical and neuromuscular effect provides an environment that enhances the body’s ability to heal which ultimately reduces pain.
Conditions Treated with Dry Needling
Conditions that can be treated include, but are not limited to neck, back and shoulder pain, arm pain (tennis elbow, carpal tunnel, golfer’s elbow), headache to include migraines and tension-type headaches, jaw pain, buttock pain and leg pain (sciatica, hamstrings strains, calf tightness/spasms).
Is this Acupuncture?
There are many similarities and differences between dry needling and acupuncture. Licensed physical therapists in a growing number of states can use dry needling under the scope of their practice. Our Physical therapists are not licensed acupuncturists and do not practice acupuncture. In contrast to most schools of acupuncture, dry needling is strictly based on Western medicine principles and research.
Not all medical or physical therapy professionals are trained to perform this treatment technique. The Physical Therapists at Anatomix Physical Therapy have advanced training in dry needling where they have received certifications by both The Integrative Dry Needling Institute and The American Academy of Manipulative Therapy.
Is Dry Needling Painful?
For most people there is little to no discomfort with the insertion of the needle. We strive to make the treatment virtually painless however, at times, you may experience a “twitch response” which often feels like a quick muscle cramp or ache. These sensations are normal and even desirable at times. Following this technique muscle soreness can be felt up to 24-48 hours. The application of heat or ice and drinking plenty of fluids usually reduces the soreness.
Dry Needling is a powerful treatment technique that when in used with conjunction with our other physical therapy treatments, can help you relieve your pain and improve your function quickly. It is not appropriate for all conditions or pathologies and the use of the technique will be at the discretion of your physical therapist. Call us today to learn more about our dry needling therapy.