dry needling

Dry Needling and Acupuncture

Dry Needling and Acupuncture

Dry Needling and Acupuncture 300 240 Ace Health Centre

Dry Needling and Acupuncture: Understanding Two Ancient Healing Techniques

Dry needling and acupuncture are two distinct therapeutic techniques that involve the use of fine needles for various health benefits. While they share some similarities, they differ in their underlying principles, applications, and the healthcare professionals who administer them.

Dry Needling

How Dry Needling Works:

1. **Targeting Trigger Points:** Dry needling is a modern therapy primarily used by physical therapists, chiropractors, and some medical doctors. It focuses on relieving muscular pain and dysfunction. Practitioners insert thin, sterile needles directly into myofascial trigger points, which are knots or tight bands of muscle fibers.

2. **Release of Muscle Tension:** The insertion of the needle into a trigger point can cause a local twitch response, a brief involuntary muscle contraction. This twitch response helps release muscle tension and improve blood circulation in the affected area.

3. **Pain Reduction:** Dry needling stimulates the nervous system, promoting the release of endorphins and other natural pain-relieving substances. This can reduce pain perception in the treated area.

Who Can Benefit from Dry Needling

Dry needling is particularly beneficial for individuals with musculoskeletal conditions such as:

**Muscle Knots and Tension:** It is effective in relieving muscle knots and tension, making it a valuable tool for athletes and individuals with chronic pain.

**Myofascial Pain Syndrome:** Dry needling is often used to address myofascial pain syndrome, a condition characterized by trigger points and muscle pain.

**Post-Surgery Rehabilitation:** Some patients use dry needling as part of their rehabilitation process to improve muscle function and reduce pain after surgery.

Acupuncture

How Acupuncture Works:

1. **Balancing Energy Flow:** Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese healing technique based on the concept of balancing the body’s vital energy, known as Qi (pronounced “chee”). It is administered by licensed acupuncturists who follow traditional Chinese medicine principles.

2. **Meridian Stimulation:** Acupuncture involves the insertion of thin needles at specific points along energy pathways, or meridians, in the body. The goal is to unblock any energy disruptions and restore the flow of Qi.

3. **Pain Management:** Acupuncture has been shown to stimulate the release of endorphins and other neurotransmitters, which can help reduce pain and improve overall well-being.

Who Can Benefit from Acupuncture

Acupuncture is known for its holistic approach to health and can be beneficial for a wide range of conditions, including:

**Pain Management:** Acupuncture is often used to manage various types of pain, including chronic pain conditions like arthritis and migraines.

**Stress and Anxiety:** It can help reduce stress and anxiety by promoting relaxation and balancing the body’s energy.

**Digestive Disorders:** Acupuncture may be used to address digestive issues such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and nausea.

**Fertility and Women’s Health:** Some individuals seek acupuncture to support fertility and address women’s health concerns like menstrual irregularities.

Conclusion

While both dry needling and acupuncture involve the use of needles, they have distinct purposes and principles. Dry needling is primarily focused on relieving musculoskeletal pain and dysfunction, often administered by physical therapists or chiropractors. In contrast, acupuncture is deeply rooted in traditional Chinese medicine, aiming to balance the body’s energy and address a wide range of physical and emotional issues, typically administered by licensed acupuncturists. The choice between these therapies depends on an individual’s specific health needs and preferences. Consulting with a qualified healthcare professional is essential to determine which approach is most suitable for one’s condition.

Book in with our physios now to see if we can help you using Dry Needling and Acupuncture

ACE dry needling treatment

Dry needling?! Don’t be scared.

Dry needling?! Don’t be scared. 1000 667 Ace Health Centre

Most people would run for the hills when they hear the word needle and even more so when those needles are about to enter their skin. Most experiences that require the use of tiny, sharp metal sticks are usually not pleasant ones. Unless we’re talking about dry needling at ACE Health Centre!

Dry needling, also known as myofascial trigger point treatment, is the next big thing, used around the world when it comes to pain management and pain reduction. If that sounds all a little too scientific for you then read on! Our head podiatrist, Mike Luker took the time to write down a few notes for our patients to explain what dry needling is and what it does for those who experience some form or arches and pains in their body.

What is it Dry needling?

Dry needling is the process of inserting a thin filament needle into the muscle trigger points, tendons, fascia, ligaments, etc. This helps in stimulating the healing process of the soft tissue. It, therefore, results in pain relief and a reduction in muscle tension.

Is it painful?

No, it isn’t painful. Yes, the needles are inserted in the skin, but the needles are so thin that it’s usually a pretty gentle and pleasant kind of treatment. Some people might feel a brief local twitch response or mild pain sensation such as tingling, cramping or cramping sensation but compare to those needles at the dentist or doctor, it’s a walk in the park.

Dry needling VS Acupuncture

Dry needling is often associated with acupuncture as both use the needles to speed up the healing process. However, it can be well differentiated from acupuncture based on objectives and the philosophy behind both. Unlike acupuncture, which uses the Chinese points of insertion, dry needling uses trigger points to decide points of insertion.

What are the benefits?

Dry needling is beneficial for relieving a variety of musculoskeletal problems including:

  • Acute injuries
  • Chronic injuries
  • Muscle spasms
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Shin splints
  • Ball of foot pain
  • Calf pain
  • Tendinitis
  • Hip pain
  • Knee pain
  • Sciatica

Research has therefore shown that the use of needles can improve pain control, electrical and biochemical dysfunction of motor endplates and reducing muscle tension.

Consult a podiatrist at ACE Health Centre to discuss your condition and see if the treatment is for you.