WHAT IS TRIGGER POINT DRY NEEDLING (TDN)? TDN is the use of small, solid filament needles that are inserted through the skin and into the muscle to release painful myofascial trigger points. Dry needling results in the deepest tissue release allowing for improvements in movement and pain. Needles are inserted in a contracted, painful, knotted muscle to create a local muscle twitch reflex, which is the first step in breaking the pain cycle as research shows it will decrease muscle contraction, reduce chemical irritation, improve flexibility and decrease pain. TDN will also produce a controlled lesion and will cut between three to fifteen thousand individual muscle fibers. The body considers the needle a foreign invader and will activate the immune system as a response. The cut muscle fibers also produce an inflammatory reaction that your body will respond to by reducing inflammation locally.
IS DRY NEEDLING ACUPUNCTURE? No, TDN is based on Western medical research and principles, whereas acupuncture is based on Traditional Chinese Medicine. The main similarity is that the same sterile, disposable solid filament needles are used.
DOES DRY NEEDLING HURT? You may or may not feel the insertion of the needle. The specific needle manipulation is intended to produce a local twitch response that can elicit a very brief (less than a second) painful response some patients describe as a deep ache or cramping sensation. Again, the therapeutic response occurs with the elicitation of the local twitch response and is a desirable reaction.
WHAT CAN I EXPECT AFTER TREATMENT? Improvements may be seen after the first visit, such as increased range of motion, ease of movement and decreased signs/symptoms. Many patients report being sore after the treatment. Typically, this soreness lasts between a few hours and two days, and there may be occasional bruising.
WHAT TYPES OF CONDITIONS CAN DRY NEEDLING ASSIST?
- Achilles Tendonitis/Tendinosis
- Plantar Fasciitis
- Chronic Pain
- Athletic Performance
- Neck/Back Pain
- Shoulder Pain
- Tennis/Golfer’s Elbow
- Hip and Gluteal Pain
- Knee Pain