What is Dry Needling?
Dry needling is a form of therapy in which fine needles are inserted into specific points in order to create neurophysiological reactions in the body and stimulate a healing effect.
The evidence base for acupuncture or dry needling in various areas of physiotherapy has increased substantially over the past decade. In particular, research has grown to provide evidence-based support in the treatment of acute and chronic back pain, chronic neck pain, tension type and migraine headaches, pelvic girdle pain, knee osteoarthritis, lateral elbow pain and shoulder conditions.
Excellent knowledge of anatomy of the area to be needled is imperative to the success of the technique and the safety of the patient. All physiotherapists are trained at an undergraduate level in musculoskeletal anatomy which underpins the progression of learning that continues at a postgraduate level.
What type of problems can be treated with dry needling?
Dry needling can be used for a variety of musculoskeletal problems. Such conditions include, but are not limited to neck, back and shoulder pain, arm pain (tennis elbow, carpal tunnel, golfer’s elbow), headache to include migraines and tension-type headaches, jaw pain, buttock pain and leg pain (sciatica, hamstrings strains, calf tightness/spasms). The treatment of muscles has the greatest effect on reducing pain mechanisms in the nervous system.
There is growing evidence of the effectiveness of segmental dry needling. Physiotherapists throughout Australia and indeed world-wide are being to utilise this technique as part of the entire rehabilitation process. With only a few sessions most patients report a significant decrease in their painful symptoms.