FAQs on Dry Needling

What Is Dry Needling?

Dry Needling (DN) is a skilled intervention that uses a thin, filiform needle to penetrate the skin and stimulate underlying myofascial trigger points within the muscles and connective tissues for the management of musculoskeletal pain and movement impairments.  Dry Needling is also used to diminish persistent peripheral nociceptive input and reduce or restore impairments of body structure and function leading to improved daily activity and participation.

What Happens during Dry Needling?

The Physical Therapist will palate the target muscle for a taut band and identify a hyperirritable spot within the taut band. Dry Needling is performed with a solid filiform needle in a tube. The filiform needle in its tube is fixed with the non- needling hand against the suspected area by using a pincer grip or flat palpation depending on the muscle orientation, location, and direction of needle penetration. With the needling hand, the needle is gently loosened from the tube. The top of the needle is tapped or flicked allowing the needle to penetrate the skin. With deep DN, the needle is guided toward the Trigger Point until resistance is felt and a local twitch response is elicited.

How is it different from Acupuncture?

Both Dry Needling and Acupuncture use the same tool; a solid needle filament. However, Dry Needling is based on a more modern, scientific approach via the study of musculoskeletal and neuromuscular systems while Acupuncture is based on theories  of traditional Chinese Medicine. Also, typically with Acupuncture there are multiple needles that may be left in the skin for a prolonged period of time; whereas, with Dry Needling, the time of insertion and penetration typically lasts no longer than 30 seconds.


What Does it Feel Like?

Generally, the insertion of the needle is not felt. The local “twitch response” may provoke a brief pain sensation that has been described as a tingling, aching or cramping. Often, patients notice a feeling of relief or relaxation near the muscle that has been dry needled within a few seconds.

To learn more about Dry Needling and how it can help you, call us today at 877-709-1090

DryNeedle Leah FAQs on Dry Needling