Trigger point dry needling (TPDN) is a neuromuscular technique to address muscle tightness and spasms. This approach is used to manage musculoskeletal pain and mobility dysfunction for a variety of conditions such as compressed nerves, decreased mobility, osteoarthritis, tendonitis, and carpal tunnel syndrome, among many others. An assessment is performed by our trained physical therapists to determine if this approach is suitable for you. We will review your mobility, strength, and neurologic status to analyze the likelihood of achieving the desired outcome.
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Does Dry Needling Hurt?
A dry needling treatment uses sterile thin stainless-steel needles known as filiform needles to perform intramuscular stimulation. The initial feeling of the needle entering through the skin is very minimal; much less than an injection. Once the needle reaches the muscle, the twitch sensation feels more like a deep cramp and doesn't last long (15-30 seconds). You may experience some muscle soreness for 1-2 days following procedure.
How Does Dry Needling Work?
Before a dry needling treatment can be performed, your physical therapist will obtain permission from your physician to make sure the procedure is safe for you. During the procedure, your therapist inserts several needles into your skin in the areas where your muscles are tense. The needles help ease muscle tension, increase blood flow, and control muscle spasms. When the trigger point in the muscle is released, you will usually experience better mobility and decreased pain. TPDN is performed 1 to 2 sessions per week as needed.
What is the Difference Between Dry Needling and Acupuncture?
Both dry needling and acupuncture involve the insertion of thin needles into certain parts of your body. But the similarities end there. The effects of the two treatments are very different. Dry needling works to relieve pain by releasing trigger points in your muscles. Acupuncture, on the other hand, works to restore balance and energy flow throughout your body. Acupuncture is often used to treat internal ailments, like digestive problems, insomnia, and stress. Dry needling is most frequently used to treat muscle pain and muscle tension.
What are the Advantages of Dry Needling?
Access– The advantage over other techniques is that we can treat parts of the muscle and deeper layers of muscles which our hands and fingers cannot reach, and it works faster than massage at relaxing the muscles.
No Drugs– There are no drugs used in dry needling, so we can treat many trigger points during each treatment.
Immediate Relief – Deactivation of the trigger points can bring immediate relief of symptoms, and then we can immediately stretch and train the muscles to work in their new pain free range of motion. Thus, results are achieved with dry needling which cannot be obtained with any other treatment.
Is Dry Needling Covered by Insurance?
No, unfortunately Dry Needling is not covered by any insurance companies at this time.