Dry Needling involves the application of acupuncture needles into tight painful myofascial areas known as ‘Trigger Points’ to elicit a healing response in these tissues.
Dry Needling is different to traditional acupuncture as it is not necessarily aimed at specific acupuncture points, does not usually involve Meridians or relations to internal organs as does traditional acupuncture needling.
Dry needling has been proven to be a very effective way of relaxing spasm muscles, reducing inflammation and relieving pain.
What is a Trigger Point?
A trigger point is a taut band of skeletal muscle located within a larger muscle group. Trigger points can be tender to the touch, and touching a trigger point may cause pain to other parts of the body. Muscles appear tight, spasmed and often weak. They often have a reduced range in motion and the potential to change movement patterns.
Preliminary research 2 supports that dry needling improves pain control, reduces muscle tension, and normalizes dysfunctions of the motor end plates, the sites at which nerve impulses are transmitted to muscles. This can help speed up the patient’s return to active rehabilitation.
Why does Dry Needling work?
Local Effects of needle penetration – healing response
A local Histamine type response similar to that which occurs after getting a splinter. The body elicits a healing response with increase blood flow and repair cell activation
Segmental Effects – pain reief
Stimulation of certain nerve fibres that may block the pain messages reaching the central nervous system.
When do we use Dry Needling?
Dry needling is used by Osteopaths typically as one of a combined technique that’s part of a larger treatment plan.We use dry needling with the goal of releasing or inactivating trigger points to relieve pain or improve range of motion. Hobsons Bay Osteopaths are well educated in anatomy and therapeutic treatment of the body and therefore effective in implementing this skill safely and effectively when required.