Dry Needling Vs Massage
There is an ongoing competition between two popular musculoskeletal pain relief methods: dry needling and massage.
Both treatments use tiny needles to target sore muscles or trigger points. Understanding the distinctions between them can help you decide which option is most beneficial for you.
What Is Needling?
Dry needling is an effective treatment method rooted in science that seeks to reduce pain and increase range of motion. It uses extremely fine needles to puncture muscle tissue and activate a natural healing response within the body.
Dry needling consists of two primary forms: myofascial trigger point dry needling and segmental dry needling. Both techniques have been demonstrated to be successful in treating musculoskeletal disorders when used as an adjunct to physical therapy.
Trigger points are knots or irritated muscles that can become a constant source of discomfort. Prolonged stimulation makes nerves more sensitive, leading to discomfort elsewhere in your body.
Dry needling works by loosening the knotted muscle, allowing it to relax and return to its resting length. It is an effective way to break the cycle of trigger point pain, helping alleviate conditions such as myofascial pain syndrome or fibromyalgia.
How Does Needling Work?
If you’ve ever pulled a muscle at the gym or played sports and experienced persistent pain, you understand how difficult it can be to find relief. Your physical therapist may suggest dry needling as one way of helping you feel better.
Dry needling treatment involves inserting a sterile needle into a tight or sore muscle, eliciting its twitch response which helps release knotted areas, reduce inflammation, relax tight muscles and increase blood flow to the affected area.
Dry needling, when combined with a comprehensive pain management strategy, can alleviate symptoms related to myofascial trigger points, muscle weakness, restricted range of motion and other dysfunctions.
Dry needling has also been known to benefit those suffering from chronic muscular-skeletal pain, fatigue and other conditions like Fibromyalgia. A recent study revealed that dry needling significantly reduced fatigue and pain levels six weeks after sessions ended; additionally, it improved sleep quality and cognitive function for those suffering from fibromyalgia.
What Are the Benefits of Needling?
Dry needling is an effective pain-relieving treatment that can be used for various musculoskeletal conditions. This technique utilizes fine needles to target dysfunctional trigger points.
Acupuncture helps to restore balance to your body’s energy flow, known as chi or qi. Licensed acupuncturists insert needles into specific meridians to stimulate a specific point and encourage healing.
The pricking sensation causes muscle fibers to contract, drawing normal blood supply back to the area to flush out trigger points and release tension. Additionally, it stimulates nerve fibers to release endorphins – your body’s natural pain medication.
Physical therapists can aid you in this process by using dry needling combined with physical therapy to reduce pain and enhance mobility.
Physical therapists frequently combine dry needling with electrical stimulation to maximize the effects of the procedure. Many people find this adds comfort and is an invaluable addition to their treatment plan.
Are Needling Sessions Painful?
Massage uses tools to apply pressure to your body, while dry needling utilizes thin filament needles that are precisely placed in muscle. As the needle pushes into a trigger point, it causes muscles to twitch in response and loosen tight tissue while increasing circulation.
Dry needling can be a highly effective tool for pain relief, increased flexibility and mobility. Physical therapists use it to address myofascial trigger points – knots of contracted muscle that may cause discomfort or movement dysfunction.
These needles are so thin they can easily enter your skin without much discomfort. Once they reach your trigger point, a twitch sensation can be felt like a deep cramp – this signals your muscle to relax and release the painful trigger point. This treatment is safe for anyone suffering from muscle discomfort; it can either be done alone or combined with other types of physical therapy treatment.
If you’re interested in learning more about dry needling and how it can help you, contact the team at Simply Physio today.