You’re feeling aches and pains in your muscles and can pinpoint it to one spot.
What do you do next? How can you deal with this uncomfortable pain that seems to have taken over your body?
Consider trying out trigger point dry needling as an option to focus your treatment on the area that you are in pain.
If you’d like to learn more about dry needling and how it works, keep reading!
What Is Dry Needling?
Dry needling is a treatment that helps people suffering from muscular pain. The popularity of this treatment is growing and many people are finding significant help with this treatment.
The technique uses thin, filiform needles which are inserted into the muscles. These needles are short, thin, and made from stainless steel. They don’t inject any fluid into the body, which is why it is called dry needling.
Practitioners will put the needles into specific areas of your muscles and tissues in order to release tight muscles and reduce pain. They may also utilize electrical stimulation with the needles to help this process.
Dry needling practitioners use the needle to release the knot and get rid of pain or spasms within the muscle. The needles stay in your muscles for a little while, but it depends on what the practitioner deems necessary.
To be able to practice dry needling, a person needs to have completed specialized advanced training. It is important to know how to do it properly and safely for it to be effective.
Does It Hurt?
For some people, dry needling is slightly painful. For others, they feel nothing at all. If you do feel something, it likely will feel like a deep ache or a cramp, but it only lasts for a small period of time. It is not unusual to have some muscle soreness afterwards, like you just did a very hard workout.
You might not feel the needle go in, but it has been reported in some people that they do feel it, like a short tap.
The needle will be manipulated to create a muscle twitch that lasts for less than a second. You hardly notice it for such a brief amount of time and the effect at the end of the session is worth it.
What Can You Expect After Treatment?
You will likely feel an increase in your range of motion, flexibility, and decreased pain even after the first visit.
A lot of patients report that they are sore after treatment in the area of the symptoms and of the treatment itself. It depends on the technique the practitioner used.
The soreness may last for a few hours or a couple of days, and there may occasionally be slight bruising. You can always apply ice or heat to the areas and stretching is frequently recommended.
Non-Trigger Point and Trigger Point Dry Needling
There are two types of techniques that people are going to work with dry needling. These include the in-and-out technique and the trigger point technique.
Trigger Point or In-and-Out Techniques
Some of the dry needling techniques, like sparrow pecking, rely on the needling going into and out of the skin. This is different than other types of dry needling because it is really fast.
The needles don’t stay in the skin for very long at all. They simply prick on the trigger points and then are taken out as soon as possible.
Non-Trigger Point Techniques
Other types of dry needling techniques are more broad. They focus more on the big picture of the entire central nervous system.
These treatments are called non-trigger point treatments. Instead of putting the needles on the trigger points or where the pain occurs, the practitioner will put the needle in the areas right around it. As it’s named, it doesn’t go right where the pain is but focuses in on it by surrounding it.
Practitioners that use this technique focus on an entire area instead of one point based on the idea that pain is a result of overall muscular issues.
Is It the Same as Acupuncture?
Acupuncture and dry needling may look the same on the outside, but they are actually very different. They both use fine, stainless steel needles that are inserted into the body, but the similarities stop there.
Acupuncture has been around for thousands of years. It is a type of alternative form of medicine used to treat the entire body. Acupuncture practitioners place their needles along meridians to change energy flow in the body and must train for years to become proficient.
Dry needling is relatively new over the last few decades and is gaining a respected reputation in the medical community. It has been shown to be very effective in treating many types of musculoskeletal dysfunctions. Dry needling focuses on improving muscle, tendon, joint and nerve function.
Both of them help end pain or discomfort, so they both have their place in alternative medicine. If you know the difference between these two types of medicines, it may help you decide which is the right choice for you.
Benefits of Dry Needling
You will find that your muscular pain and stiffness can be alleviated with dry needling. You may also experience increased range of motion, improved strength and better flexibility once the points of pain have been eased with the needling methods.
Dry needling can be an excellent choice to use with sports injuries, fibromyalgia, pulled muscles, whiplash or general muscle pain. It is used to treat a variety of ailments that affect your muscles and joints including low back and neck pain.
In order to perform dry needling, a licensed practitioner must be trained to perform the techniques safely and correctly. The initial training entails over 30 hours of continuing education. There are several levels of training available beyond that. Practitioners are trained to do it safely and practically. It is wise to use practitioners that can offer a wide variety of services and know a lot about the body.
Getting Dry Needling Treatment Done
Now that you know more about trigger point dry needling, you might want to have it done for yourself. Ask your therapist if you are a candidate for dry needling.
There are a lot of great results that you may have from doing dry needling, so it is worth the time and effort to get it done. Even with the possibility of post treatment soreness, you will find that your muscles feel better than ever.
If you’d like to know more about this treatment option, please contact us to see if we are able to help. We would love to get you feeling better today!