Dry needling is a technique used to treat myofascial pain. It evolved after doctors discovered that whether they injected cortisone ,saline, dry injection or an acupuncture needle, the pain was relieved. This technique uses a “dry” needle and is inserted into the skin into the trigger point of the muscle. A trigger point is a discrete focal area within a muscle or its fascia where a hyperirritable knot or band develops and causes local or referred pain. Soft tissue painful,thickened areas, muscle knots, tension points or post injury scarring respond well to this technique.
Stainless steel single use acupuncture needles of varying lengths and diameters, with rounded tips are used. The aim is to release or inactivate the trigger points, thereby relieving pain and improving range of motion. Research has shown 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. A good knowledge of anatomy is essential when dry needling, as is a sterile technique and correct disposal.
Craig Smith, from Club Physio runs very comprehensive and enlightening dry needling courses.
On the Dry Needling Level 1 course, we covered 70% of the bodies major muscles including the muscles of the buttocks, lower legs, upper limbs, Cervical and Lumbar spine and the shoulder girdle.
The Dry Needling Level 2 course includes the hands and feet, the abdomen, head and neck, and the thorax and pelvic area. It also covers clinical indications and how to manage various sports injuries, headaches, teninopathies and other common injuries that physios see .
After 3 days of having almost every muscle group needled, we left feeling more confident to use this technique in our practices, rather tired, but definitely with less aches and pains in our trigger points!
Thank you Craig!