Dry Needling is a technique used in physical therapy to treat musculoskeletal pain. This process involves sticking extremely thin needles into or around a trigger point to relieve pain and tension. It is called dry needling because there is no transmission of fluid or medicine when the needle is injected.
Although dry needling and acupuncture both involve the insertion of thin needles, they are completely different. One of our physical therapists here in Nashville, TN, Kevin Hovde, compares dry needling and acupuncture to "the difference between Western and Eastern medicine". Dry needling is used to treat pain in the body by targeting trigger points, while acupuncture is based on Chinese medicine and is made to create balance and energy in the body.
Dry needling inactivates trigger points which can restore normal muscle function, alleviate pain, and improve mobility! This practice commonly helps to alleviate neck pain, back pain, and knee pain. It can even help to relieve symptoms from TMJ or tension headaches.
Dry needling can help symptoms from a variety of conditions:
A trigger point is a tight or contracted band of muscle fiber. Trigger points can disrupt normal muscle function and decrease range of motion. They are typically developed from overuse or injury and can cause pain in a specific spot or pain that emits to other areas in the body.
Since trigger points can cause radiating pain, dry needling can be done through a process called non-trigger point technique. This technique involves needles being placed near the area of pain, but not on the specific trigger point.
Dry Needling can be done anywhere on the body; the most common areas are typically related to the back, neck, leg, and shoulder.
If you have painful trigger points that impede your rehabilitation, athletic performance, or recovery from a sports injury, dry needling may be right for you! To learn more about dry needling, click here.
If you are experiencing pain in your back, neck, knees, or any other part of your body, dry needling may be a solution to your problem. Book an appointment with one of our highly experienced physical therapists near you! We have physical therapists that practice in Midtown and Green Hills in Nashville, TN, and a location in Franklin, TN. To book an appointment click here.