Dry needling is a slightly invasive therapy that was originally inspired by acupuncture, and it is a very popular pain-relief treatment provided by trained physical therapists. It involves gently inserting hair-thin needles into the skin for the purposes of relieving tension and pain. The needle is called “dry” because it is not an injection-based type of needle.
There are actually several different types of dry needling techniques, and your physical therapist will recommend and administer the most appropriate method for your condition. They include the following:
Trigger-Point Dry Needling
A trigger point is a spot in a muscle that is highly sensitive to touch. The sensitivity may develop due to overuse, underuse, or injury to the area.
Trigger points are tight knots of muscle tissue, and they can cause referred pain in other areas of the body. You can test this yourself by pressing on the trigger point and noticing whether you suddenly feel pain anywhere else.
Trigger-point dry needling involves inserting the special needle into the sensitive area in order to deactivate the pain. Your therapist will likely insert the needle, wiggle it a bit to stimulate the muscle, and then remove the needle.
Patients often experience relief from headaches, neck pain, back pain, and jaw pain with trigger-point dry needling therapy.
Superficial Dry Needling
True to the name, these dry needles are inserted only slightly into the skin – and this treatment is used for delicate areas such as myofascial trigger points in the lower-back muscles. Superficial dry needling is designed to stop short of the muscle itself, reaching just above it to trigger the reflex which brings about pain relief.
Deep Dry Needling
Deep dry needling is used in patients who have spine-related conditions that cause painful symptoms. A longer needle is necessary in order to properly access and manipulate the location of the muscle that is causing pain.
Intramuscular Electrical Stimulation (IMES)
This technique involves the combined use of dry needling and TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation) currents to maximize therapeutic effects. It is especially used in patients who have lower back pain.
Dry Needling in Austin, TX
If you are interested in finding out more about dry needling and how it might help to reduce your pain, make an appointment with a licensed physical therapist who provides dry needling services. Here at Endeavor Physical Therapy & Wellness, our therapists are highly qualified to perform this procedure and all forms of physical therapy. When performed by a skilled professional, dry needling can greatly reduce your pain so you can get back to living a normal life.
If you have any questions or would like to schedule a consultation with one of our highly experienced physical therapists, contact our friendly staff today by calling us at (512) 284-7192 or by filling out our easy-to-use appointment request form online now. We look forward to helping you enjoy a more pain-free lifestyle once again!