Dry needling is a simple and effective method for reducing muscular knots, also known as trigger points. A super thin needle is placed near the junction where the muscle and nerve connect to supply power to the muscle. The body’s response is an involuntary twitch of the muscle followed by relaxation. It’s like pressing a “reset” button on your problematic muscle. The effects of Dry Needling are usually felt immediately and can take up to a week to notice.
How do I know if Dry Needling is right for me?
Dry needling will be a good fit for you if you have muscle knots, cramps, spasms or dense connective tissue from scar tissue. We call these spots “issues in the tissues”. Many times they will reactive to an evaluation technique called “plucking” or “strumming”. Basically, if the guitar-like-string in the muscle twitches after being strummed, its a sure sign of the problem. This is called a local twitch response and indicates a trigger point.
The other way to know if dry needling will give you a chance at recovery, freedom of movement, and muscle control is if other methods didn’t help. You may know you have an “issue in the your tissues” but it doesn’t get better over time from stretching, massage, or chiropractic.
Dry needling can in fact with the “clean up hitter” your body has been looking for. The technique that is a game changer to get you back to what you love to do or just move naturally again.
What kind of results can I expect from Dry Needling?
Many times, instant changes. The purpose of Dry Needling may be to reduce pain and tightness, improve range of motion and joint mobility. It can also take a muscle out of hibernation, disconnection, and out the out-of-sync feeling from the rest of the body. So, what we see is greater range of movement, better quality of movement, stabilization of joints and synchronization of muscles to help people achieve their personalized, functional goal.
What is the recommended Dry Needling aftercare?
Drink plenty of water. This helps re-hydrate tissues that now are being delivered oxygenated blood and nutrients to the near dormant part of the muscle that is now awakening after needling. Delayed onset muscle soreness is a common side effects so drinking water helps prevent this from happening. Still, soreness may develop after the session. It will be the same feeling after a good workout which happens 1 to 2 days post-exercise. There is emerging evidence that it is caused by the same process (release of the chemical byproducts of metabolism, inflammatory and pain hormones).
Apply a moist heat pack on mild to medium or running the affected area under a warm shower or bath. It’s soothing and makes it feel better sooner. Avoid ice or cold because this can cause muscle spasms and that’s not what you want. Ice or cold helps in the cases where a welt develops, something that looks like a bug bite with a bump and maybe bruising.
We take extra care with Dry Needling to prevent serious harm. This is an invasive technique that is safe when used appropriately. All needles are sterile straight from the packaging. After use they are disposed into a sharps container to be properly removed, never to be used again. The Physical Therapist will wear nitrile gloves for their protection.