Dry needling is one of the therapeutic approaches that seem to be effective in the management of musculoskeletal pain. Dry needling can be an effective addition to the treatment of patients to decrease pain levels, restore function, improve mobility, and as a result enhance recovery. The main goal of dry needling is to release trigger points or knots, that can develop in muscles and cause pain. Dry needling is also sometimes called myofascial trigger point dry needling.
Although the exact mechanism of dry needling is not clear, it is thought to work by stimulating the release of chemicals that help to reduce pain and help to break the cycle of muscle spasms. Dry needling is generally considered safe when performed by a trained and licensed healthcare professional. There are some risks associated with dry needling, but these are typically rare and minor.
A dry needling session typically lasts 30-60 minutes. During a dry needling session, you will be asked to lie down on a table. Your healthcare provider will clean the skin over the needle site with an antiseptic solution. They will then insert thin needles into the skin and muscles. You may feel a brief prick when the needles are inserted. Once the needles are in place, you may feel a twitch or cramping sensation. There are a variety of applications for dry needling including pistoning, and winding, or the needles will be left in place for 10-20 minutes. After the needles are removed, you may feel a sense of release and relaxation.
There are several potential benefits of dry needling, including relief from pain, increased range of motion, improved quality of life, reduced stress and anxiety, and faster recovery from injury. Therefore, patients with the following symptoms may benefit from dry needling: neck pain and headaches, muscle spasms, tendinitis/-nosis, adhesive capsulitis, knee pain, low back pain, and plantar fasciitis.
First, dry needling can be used to treat various types of pain, including musculoskeletal pain, headaches and menstrual cramps. One study found that dry needling was effective in treating upper back and neck pain (1). Another study found that dry needling was effective in treating tension headaches (2). In addition, dry needling can help to increase the range of motion and improve flexibility. One study found that dry needling was effective in increasing the range of motion in the shoulders of people with frozen shoulders (3). Dry needling can also improve quality of life by reducing pain and increasing range of motion. One study found that dry needling was effective in improving the quality of life in people with chronic neck pain (4). Moreover, dry needling can reduce stress and anxiety levels. One study found that dry needling was effective in reducing stress and anxiety levels in people with fibromyalgia (5). Finally, dry needling can help people recover from injuries faster. One study found that dry needling was effective in reducing pain and speeding up recovery from muscle strains (6).
However, as with all procedures, dry needling has some side effects as well. The most common side effect of dry needling is mild discomfort at the needle site. Other potential side effects include bruising, bleeding, and soreness. Serious side effects are rare but can include infection, and pneumothorax, punctured lung, and nerve damage.
Dry needling is a relatively new treatment that is growing in popularity. It has been shown to be an effective way to treat pain and improve function. If you are experiencing pain, contact us at Dynamic Rehab Inc. today to see if dry needling may be the right treatment for you.