What is Dry Needling

DryNeedling1Dry needling is great for a range of musculoskeletal conditions.  Your Sunbury chiropractor is very familiar with this type of modality and uses it for a range of conditions, to get their patients on the path back to health.

If you have heard about dry needling and want to know how it may help you, call us now, at Roxburgh Park (03) 9303 9952 or Sunbury (03) 9746 3977 to make an appointment.

Trigger point dry needling is particularly excellent for relaxing muscle spasm that commonly occurs in reaction to nerve irritation, arthritis, ligament injuries, muscle strains and disc issues.  We call it “dry” needling because, unlike your flu shots, no solution gets injected.  It is the needle itself that sits in the muscle belly and creates the desired effects.

When you injure your body, an inflammatory response is produced that helps with healing.  The muscles surrounding the area also spasm, in the body’s attempt to guard it against further injury.  Although these protective mechanisms of the body are integral for our survival, the blood supply becomes inhibited, resulting in difficulty getting oxygen-rich blood to the area, as well as waste products removed from the area.  The area then becomes hypoxic, which means that the oxygen supply is reduced, causing the body to produce fibroblasts as a reactive response.  Fibroblasts then result in scar tissue.  This fibrosis shortens and restricts the muscle’s ability to achieve full length and function to its utmost ability.  There may also be compression of the surrounding structures, such as nerves, in conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome.

In dry needling, small needles get inserted into painful muscle knots.  A local twitch response in the muscle is produced, which helps reduce contracture, reduce chemical tissue irritation, decrease pain and improve flexibility.  The body, in response to the needle, reacts by causing a local inflammatory response, which breaks down the scar tissue so that new muscle fibres can be laid down in an optimal pattern, rather than the randomized criss-crossing pattern of scar tissue.

We often get asked if dry needling is the same thing as acupuncture.  It is not! Acupuncture first originated from traditional Chinese medicine, and is based on meridians.  Contrastingly, dry needling is based on Western medical research.  Although the types of needles that are used are very similar, the philosophy and diagnosis behind each of the two modalities is incredibly different!

We also often get asked if dry needling is painful.  For most, there will be no response what so ever.  However, for some, you may feel the needle as it is inserted.  Some patients also report being sore for a few hours after treatment, although this rarely last more than 2 days maximum.  In most cases, it will only be for less than 2 hours.Soreness is often relieved with ice or heat packs and specific stretching.

If you think dry needling may help you with your condition, call us now, at Roxburgh Park (03) 9303 9952 or Sunbury (03) 9746 3977 to book an appointment.

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