Dry needling is a valuable adjunct treatment often used for chronic pain and stiffness, and to deactivate myofascial trigger points.
A trigger point is a contraction of a portion of muscle that feels like a knot which is tender when pressed. Trigger points may limit normal movement and lead to further complications and pain.
Dry needling is recognized by the Board of Physical Therapy as an acceptable treatment intervention under the practice of physical therapy.
What Type of Problems Are Treated with Dry Needling?
- Musculoskeletal conditions that are due to overload or overuse including but not limited to:
- Headaches including migraines
- Neck conditions including radiculopathy, impingement of a nerve due to muscle tightness
- Shoulder pain including tendonitis, impingement and strains
- Tennis and golfer’s elbow
- Hand pain including carpal tunnel syndrome
- Foot and plantar fasciitis pain
- Back pain including sciatica and back strain
- Lower extremity pain including hip and knee pain from strains, piriformis syndrome, patellofemoral syndrome, and compartment-like syndromes
How Is Dry Needling Done?
With the dry needling technique, a fine, flexible sterile needle is inserted into the skin and muscle directly into a trigger point. The purpose of the needling is to release shortened bands of muscle caused by abnormal functioning of the nervous system. No drugs are injected.
What Are Its Benefits?
- Decreased pain
- Decreased muscle tenderness
- Improved range of motion
- Improved muscle function, strength and control
A prescription from a medical doctor for dry needling is required prior to receiving treatment. Patients must also sign a consent form and brief intake form.