This article will knot be afraid to get right to the point-I will give it my best shot. You will of course learn a few interesting facts about dry needling, but you do run the risk of further crimes against humour. You have been warned!
What is dry needling?
The use of small needles to stimulate muscle twitch response in order to help conditions such as joint pain, tennis golfers elbow, muscle/ligament strain, tendonitis/osis, sciatica, chronic pain and many more.
Why choose Dry Needling?
I am not a hippy, but I personally like to avoid taking medication unless completely necessary. It means when I need to use it, I have a lower tolerance and the medication works better. I like to use these things sparingly, but I don’t want to suffer in silence. Thus if I can find treatments with little or no side effects, and less chemicals in my body, I will give them a try!
Why is the needle dry-will it hurt more?
The simple answer is no. The distinction of ‘dry’ in the title of this therapy refers to the lack of any liquid, or indeed medication as such being delivered. If anything, the process will hurt less due to this. The needle itself is the medicine in this instance, most patients do not feel the needle going in, and at most feel a slight cramping sensation in terms of pain.
There are a number of terms used to describe dry needling.
These can include;
Trigger point dry needling (TDN)
Intramuscular manual therapy
Dry needling is not Acupuncture, it derives from modern western medicine rather than ancient Eastern practices. Despite being different in purpose and ethos-This is perhaps a good way for the uninitiated to visualise the treatment.
A needle is used to mobilize and oxygenate inflamed, tense or certain other targeted areas (trigger points) on the body. This assists with pain reduction, mobility improvement and rehabilitation of the area in question. It is essentially a complimentary approach to massage for the acute of trauma or strains.
When we injure ourselves, the body immediately looks to protect the area and limit the damage by preventing further usage-simplistically It does this by limiting blood flow, we experience this as swelling to the area in question. After this has occurred, scarring or fibrosis can prevent movement returning to its usual state. The first step in treatment for injury is often to release the area from this protective state, improve blood flow, muscle mobility and reduce pain.
Dry needling approaches this by using a hollow needle breaking down the scarred fibres that inhibit recovery and creating a “Local twitch response”. The initial area of effect experiences a beneficial mechanical response may be localised, but advocates of this method report positive chemical and neurological benefits.
If you are looking for pain or injury treatment that is not invasive, and doesn’t involve medication, this could be a great option for you. As with any treatment, please seek advice from your doctor to be sure this is appropriate for your particular needs.
Dry needling is offered as part of a holistic approach at Bodilight and is used alongside other methods. Please drop in for an informal chat with our team of experts to discuss the best course of treatment for you and whether needling may help.
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