Dry Needling and Acupuncture for Pain
Dry needling is a technique used for musculoskeletal injuries and pain management. This treatment that involves a very thin acupuncture needle being inserted into specific trigger or motor points to relieve muscle, joint and myofascial pain and dysfunction.
How Dry Needling Works
Trigger Point (points of soft tissue tension) and Motor Point (points where nerves innervate the corresponding muscle belly) dysfunction can develop during occupational, recreational or sports activities when muscles are over worked. If the overwork of the muscles is chronic, normal recovery is not possible. Muscles and fascia are very prone to tension and restriction, but respond quickly to Dry Needling.
Dry Needling releases trigger or motor points causing the muscles to relax and soften. This promotes the proper circulation of blood, nutrients and metabolic wastes. Adjoining and opposing muscles are allowed to return to their natural length, reducing strain on tendons, ligaments and bones. Inflammation and pain are reduced. Chronic dysfunctional structural patterns are released and an environment for healing is created.
What does Dry Needling Feel Like?
Generally, a patient cannot feel the dry needle be inserted. Upon stimulation of a trigger or motor point a local twitch response or sudden slight contraction of the muscle may create a very brief dull ache or cramping response. This response is normal and considered a positive therapeutic reaction. Once a twitch response has been elicited, the muscle fibers in that area relax, ‘inflammation’ is reduced and circulation improves.
Immediately after treatment patients commonly experience heaviness in the limbs, a result of the release of chronic muscle tension and muscle soreness that may be felt up to 24-48 hrs. The application of heat or ice, analgesics, essential oils or taking a warm/hot Epson salt bath and drinking plenty of fluids usually reduces the soreness.
Difference between Acupuncture & Dry needling
Dry Needling is also known a “Ashi” needling in Acupuncture & Chinese Medicine. Ashi Points are tender or sore Acupuncture points on the body. Because Motor Points often overlap with Acupuncture Points, the treatment of a musculoskeletal condition will sometimes directly resolve some other apparently unrelated medical problem.
If you’re in Grand County Colorado and considering a dry needling session, please call to learn more or book your appointment on our online portal.