What is Dry Needling?
Dry Needling is a minimally invasive form of treating Trigger points in the body. Trigger points are little knots in a muscle which cause pain and referred pain and are the cause of a lot of muscular pain. Studies in the United States showed that Trigger Points were the primary source of pain for:
- 74% of patients with musculoskeletal pain who were seen by a Neurologist,
- 85% of patients admitted to a comprehensive pain centre,
- 55% of patients referred to a Dental Clinic with head, neck and jaw pain. (Kalichman & Vulfsons, 2010)
This shows that Trigger Points constitute a substantial burden for individual patients and society as a whole. Undiagnosed musculoskeletal pain caused by Trigger Points can lead to much more serious, chronic muscle pain.
History of Dry Needling
Dry needling is the insertion of Acupuncture needles into these trigger points as an alternative to manual therapy. Although Acupuncture needles are used, it is a different method to Acupuncture. Dry Needling is based on traditional reasoning of western medicine.
In 1979, Karel Lewit proposed that the effect of injections to heal muscular pain were caused by the insertion of the needle to a Trigger Point rather than the substance being injected. Since then, many studies have been done to prove the effectiveness of Dry Needling and Dry Needling has been widely used for the treatment of Trigger Points ever since.=
How Safe is it?
Dry Needling has been proven to be a very safe method of treating Trigger Points. In a British study, minor adverse effects were reported in only 671 out of 10,000 cases. Only 14 of the 10,000 were reported as significant and only 1 lasted more than a week and required further treatment.
Dry Needling can be incorporated into any treatment to help with faster healing at no extra cost to the client. It is a safe, painless way of treating musculoskeletal pain anywhere in the body.
Kalichman, L. & Vulfsons, S. (2010). Dry Needling in the Management of Musculoskeletal Pain. The Journal of American Board of Family Medicine. Vol 23. No 5. Pg 640-646
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