Need a Little Needling?

Dry needling has been receiving quite a bit of attention lately. Perhaps you have overheard someone say they went to physical therapy and their therapist used needles to help relieve their pain in their shoulder…what exactly did the therapist do and what is dry needling? 

Dry needling is a technique that trained physical therapists may utilize to relieve pain or improve motion in a specific area by releasing or inactivating trigger points.  The therapist will use a thin filiform needle without medication, meaning “dry”, to penetrate the skin into areas of muscle that are taut or tender to touch, also known as a trigger point. It is in place for only a brief period of time. Many people will compare it to acupuncture but they are actually quite different. According to the American Physical Therapy Association, acupuncture is a practice based on Chinese Medicine performed by acupuncturists whom needle in areas of meridians throughout the body. Dry needling is a part of modern Western medicine principles supported by research. The physical therapist will first identify if the patient has trigger points that are causing pain or dysfunction. Once that is determined, the dry needling technique may be administered, in conjunction with other therapeutic treatments as a part of their larger treatment plan.  

While this approach has been extremely successful within our practice at Body One Physical Therapy, it may not be the solution for everyone, especially those with a fear of needles. To learn more or to determine if this treatment might be of benefit to you, contact a therapist at any of our 4 locations: Zionsville, North Meridian, Fishers or South Emerson.