Dry needling is used effectively to treat muscle pain and spasms. When an injury occurs from repetitive use or acute trauma, dry needling can be an effective technique to help alleviate the resulting muscle tension and pain.
Frequently-Asked-Questions About Dry Needling
What is dry needling?
- Dry needling is the use of a needle by a trained professional to elicit a local twitch response in order to alleviate muscle tension and pain.
How does dry needling differ from acupuncture?
- Dry needling and acupuncture are similar in the type of needle utilized, however, the reason why and where it is performed differs in that acupuncture is based in Eastern medicine and dry needling is based in Western medicine and research principles. Acupuncture is based on traditional Chinese medicine and focuses on the energy. It treats the entire body to restore balance versus dry needling, which focuses on a specific muscle and the neurological aspect.
What type of problems can be treated with dry needling?
- Dry needling is an effective method of treatment for most types of muscle tension, spasms and pain to include: arthritis, acute/chronic injuries, headaches, neck/back pain, tendinitis, muscle spasms, sciatica, hip/knee pain, muscular strain, fibromyalgia, ligament strains and herniated discs, as well as a variety of other bone and muscle pain.
Are there any side effects?
- Some patients may experience brief periods of muscle soreness for several hours to days.
How long does it take for the procedure to work?
- Often patients see results after the first treatment; however, several visits are often necessary to obtain full benefit.
What should I do after having the procedure done?
- Our recommendations vary depending on the amount of soreness you have and on the individual response to the treatment. Recommendations may include applying heat or ice over the area, gentle stretches and modifications of activities.
Why is it called “dry” needling?
- 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 this a covered service?
- It is covered by most insurance plans with a referral to physical therapy.
Does this procedure hurt?
- The needle used is very thin and most individuals do not even feel it penetrate the skin. The local “twitch response” may provoke a brief sensation that has been described as a tingling, aching or cramping.