You may have seen or heard about this treatment called 'Dry Needling' and have wondered, "What is that?," "Why do people need that?," or "Would I benefit from that?"
Read below to find out the answers and more to all of your questions.
What is Dry Needling?
Dry Needling is a technique some physical therapist use (where allowed by state law) for the treatment of pain and movement impairment. The technique uses a "dry" needle, one without medication or injection, inserted through the skin into areas of the muscles.
Other terms commonly used to describe dry needling, include trigger point dry needling, and intramuscular manual therapy.
Commonly thought, dry needling is not acupuncture, a practice based on traditional Chinese medicine and performed by acupuncturists. Dry needling is a part of Western principles, and supported by research.
What does it feel like?
Areas of the trunk and hips tend to be relatively painless, however discomfort is sometimes felt in areas of increased tension/sensitivity only during insertion of the needle. Areas of the arms and legs tend to have moderate discomfort for some, again that is only temporary during needle insertion.
Why would I need dry needling?
Simply put, your time and money. Dry needling has shown to cut down on the overall time in therapy. Some therapists at MTS have been able to cut down their patient's total number of treatment session by about 15% and have had some patients only receive 2-3 visits with complete resolution of pain.
Now, dry needling alone is not enough. Following treatment, it is recommended that corrective exercise is performed to retrain the treated areas how to function properly.
How long does it take to feel the effects?
Most often increased flexibility/range of motion (ROM), decreased pain, and improved strength is felt immediately following treatment. Typically, some MTS Therapists will perform 3 treatments until determining if the patient is not benefiting. About 95% of MTS patients receive some improvement with treatment.
Will I be limited following treatment?
No, you are encouraged to move and be active. Your therapist will provide a detailed exercise program to promote the return of pain free function.
Commonly treated conditions with dry needling:
- Muscle and joint pain
- Sciatic and lower back issues
- Neck pain including Headaches
- Athletic injuries
- Overuse syndromes including tennis elbow, rotator cuff syndrome, and plantar fasciitis
Reference: apta.org 2018
Think you are a candidate or feel like you could benefit from dry needling?
Contact any of our MTS locations today!
MTS offers full physical therapy services, along with all inclusive wellness and gym memberships serving the Acadiana Area. Our approach is a concept that embraces all aspects of a person’s needs. We help you better understand the importance of body, mind and soul to your overall well-being.