Visit our Locations
Lawton, Oklahoma
Give us a Call
Opening Hours
Mon - Thur: 8AM - 6PM
Friday: 8AM - 2PM
Dry Needling - What It Is & Who It Helps

Dry Needling – What It Is & Who It Helps?

Dry needling is a safe, slightly uncomfortable, and often useful therapy for people with such musculoskeletal presentations, despite its scary name.

Dry needling is a procedure conducted by professional, qualified, and registered physical therapists. For the treatment of body discomfort and movement limitations, a thin monofilament needle enters the skin and treats underlying muscle trigger points.

What is Dry Needling?

It’s different requirements between dry needling and acupuncture. It makes use of similar tools, but that’s all there is to it. They are varying practitioners with different levels of training practice dry needling. Dry needling is based on collective medicine and the evaluation of pain patterns, posture, action impairments, function, and orthodontic tests. Acupuncture is based on Eastern medicine. At the same time, dry needling is based on Western medicine and the estimation of pain patterns, posture, functional movement limitations, function, and orthopaedics tests.

The purpose of dry needling is to relieve discomfort, prevent the growth trigger points, and help repair muscle tissue. However, it is frequently used as part of a broader physical therapy approach which includes other standard physical therapy procedures.

Dry needling can help with shoulder, neck, heel, hip, and back pain, among other musculoskeletal conditions. While research shows that dry needling is a simple and effective way to treat and manage pain, some insurance providers may not cover the cost.

Why Choose Dry Needling?

Dry needling is often one method used by physical therapists as part of a bigger treatment strategy. Dry needling is a medical method used by physical therapists to reduce pain and enhance range of motion by releasing or inactivating trigger points.

Dry needling improves pain control, lowers muscle tension, and normalizes disorder of the motor end plates, the sites where nerve impulses are transferred to muscles, according to research work. Therefore, this can help to improve patients’ return to active rehabilitation more quickly.

Physical therapists require specific training in anatomy and treatment of the body as a component of their entry-level education. Physical therapists who practise dry needling receive further education and training after completing a postgraduate program. When consulting with a physical therapist regarding dry needling, be careful to inquire about their specific experience and knowledge.

The procedure of Dry Needling:

A thin fusiform needle enters the skin and activates underlying myofascial trigger points, muscle, and connective tissues with dry needling. However, a physical therapist can use the needle to target tissues that aren’t easily palpable.
procedure of Dry Needling

When dry needling, physical therapists follow the Standard Procedures. Guide to Preventing Infection for Outpatient Settings, and OSHA standards by wearing gloves and other protective equipment. Medical sharps collectors are used to dispose of sterile needles.

5 Essential Things You Should Know About Dry Needling:
Things You Should Know About Dry Needling

Physical therapists treat pain and diseases that limit a patient’s mobility with a range of treatments. Dry needling is one of these procedures, which involves inserting a solid thread needle into the muscle. Therefore, what is dry needling, and how does it work? Here are five things you should be aware of.


Acupuncture is a therapy method based on Eastern medicine that focuses on the movement of Qi, or energy, along the meridian to treat diseases.

Dry needling is a Western technique for treating pain and disability in musculoskeletal problems. They act as a reset button by resolving trigger points and disrupting the pain cycle.


Dry needling can be used to relieve pain in patients who have discomfort and/or movement disorders as a result of a musculoskeletal problem. This includes chronic pain, lumbar pain, neck pain, shoulder pain, headaches/migraines, concussion, and plantar fasciitis in any muscle with a trigger point.

A prescription is acquired, and the patient signs a release form if a therapist determines that a patient is suitable for dry needling.

An expert physical therapist employs dry needling and electrical stimulation on the upper trapezius and elevator muscles. They are a technique that has been extended in neck pain.


Warming up, dry needling, stretching, and/or stimulation of the muscle to increase normal length (flexibility) help restore contractions and control of the muscles are all options for treatments.


The patient is initially placed in a comfortable, safe position to allow the affected area to be seen. The therapist cleans the surface layer of the skin with alcohol before applying pressure (searching the damaged areas by touch) for discomfort and/or palpable trigger points. They have been taut hyper-contracted nodules/bands inside the muscle tissue.


Needles are inserted, adjusted, and then removed or managed to keep in place for an extended period. But based on the patient and the position of the needles, it may not be felt at all.

The needle causes a local twitch reaction, which is followed by muscular relaxation. A cramping, aching sensation, or little discomfort may occur for a few seconds. Therefore, to increase blood flow to the organs and relax muscular tissue, electrical activity can be delivered to the needles.

Get Pain Relief with Dry Needling:

Suppose you’re suffering from lower back pain, headaches, ankle instability, tendinitis, or neurological and myofascial discomfort. In that case, you might wonder, “How can I get rid of this pain without seeing a doctor or taking painkillers?”

You could be an excellent candidate for dry needling therapy. Dry needling, in terms of physical therapy, is a highly targeted method of improving musculoskeletal and neuromuscular disorders. It produces almost immediate improvements after just one treatment. We’ve had the opportunity to see firsthand how dry needling for pain relief has greatly benefitted our patients.

Types of Dry Needling for Pain Relief:

Deep Dry Needling:

The needle is injected under the skin, and directly through the muscle belly of a muscular trigger point muscle trigger points are law are based on muscle spasms that generate a heightened pain response. Which can pertain pain to these other parts of the human body when stimulated). In such areas, blood flow is often constrained, preventing tissue healing.)

Superficial Dry Needling:

Above muscle trigger sites, the needle is injected into the skin infection layers. But again, not directly into the trigger point itself. Dry needling can also be used in combination with electrical activity to improve the treatment effect.

What Will I Feel?

You could feel the pressure, a prick, and/or discomfort when the procedure is done (some areas are more sensitive than others). The muscles may move spontaneously if the needles are put into a trigger site. When paired with electrical activity, the muscle will constantly contract while being stimulated. The next day, you may notice some increased discomfort in the areas in which the Dry Needling therapy was applied, although this normally resolves within 1-two days.

Can Dry Needling Help to Recover Headaches?

Absolutely! Dry needling relieves tension by stimulating trigger points in muscles and tissue, avoiding headaches, and relieving tension produced by headaches. Tension, migraines, cluster, and sinus headaches are the four basic forms of headaches. Although muscle tension is the main cause of tension headaches, they respond best to dry needling. However, nick goes over the other three forms of headaches in greater detail.

Migraines, for example, may not necessarily be caused by neuromuscular problems. But they can still produce muscle tension, increasing the discomfort and reducing the body’s general movement. An examination will determine whether migraine is caused by muscle tension, nerve irritation, or a limitation in blood flow to the head. In addition to dry needling, a physical therapist may suggest cardiovascular training or any other soft tissue activation in the latter two cases.

As more people seek quick treatments for chronic health pain as alternatives to medications, dry needling is becoming more common. Dry needling successfully removes muscle knots, increases mobility, and reduces tension and pain.

Dry Needling Benefits for Athletes?

Dry needling is becoming increasingly popular. It is popular among both doctors and patients along with its conservative, non-invasive strategy. Dry needling promotes the flow of blood to particular areas of the body and can assist begin the recovery process in areas where previous therapies have been unsuccessful, such as tendonitis.

It can also increase muscle extensibility and contractibility by directing your body to release pain-relieving chemicals. Neck pain, low back pain, shoulder discomfort, tennis elbow, nerve damage, headaches—you name it—it’s a great treatment. It’s an excellent tool for pain management and reduction in general.

Although the needles used in acupressure and Dry Needling appear to be quite similar, acupuncture seeks to treat diseases by altering the flow of energy through traditional Chinese meridians. Dry needling, on the other hand, is a science-based technique for treating pain and disability in neuromuscular and musculoskeletal disorders.

Due to intense training programs and a lack of time and allowing the body to relax and repair itself correctly, athletes tend to put extra stress on their bodies. The treatment of severe muscle strain is one of the advantages of Dry Needling.

However, dry needling is a type of therapy that involves placing ultra-fine needles into myofascial trigger points (those hypersensitive knots that really can form in muscles), tendons, ligaments, and nerves. Therefore, the purpose is to promote recovery in patients suffering from a variety of painful musculoskeletal diseases.

What should you expect after dry needling therapy?

Following a dry needling session, discomfort is common. It’s similar to the pain you get after doing strength exercise. The pain usually goes away within 24 hours. Ice, heat, and easy moving can all help to relieve it.

You may need to assist your muscles in healing and restoring their functioning in addition to treating sore muscles.

Drink plenty of water:

As advised by your physical therapist, In the days following dry needling treatments, it’s important to keep hydrated. Another technique to avoid or decrease painful muscles after an exercise is to drink water.


Stretch, work out and keep doing what you’re doing as long as your discomfort doesn’t come back. Keep to your physical therapist’s rehab programmer to improve your injury or disorder.

Give your muscles a massage:

Physical therapists also utilize massage as a trigger point therapy. However, they give your taut muscles a gentle massage to keep the tissues stimulated and aid with the discomfort and pain.

Dry needling is a speciality of physical therapists, but it was just one among several treatments in their toolbox. Dry needling can be performed as a stand-alone treatment or in combination with a range of other treatments to reduce pain and enhance function. Make an appointment with your physical therapist to assess your pain. They determine your trigger points and start you feeling better.

Final Verdict:

You could be confused determining between dry needling and acupuncture. You could only compare them with a photo. Acupuncture and dry needling both employ stainless steel needles that are very thin. Therefore, needles are placed into the skin in both treatments, and both claim to relieve pain.

That’s the extent of the likeness. Different characteristics help to separate the two. One approach has been utilized as an alternative therapy for thousands of years and has been statistically proven successful. However, the other has only been used for a few decades.

Opening a person’s flow of energy, or chi is thought to relieve symptoms, discomfort, and other difficulties. The other is intended to stimulate trigger points or sensitive muscles. Knowing the distinctions can assist you in determining which treatment option is best for you!

Frequently Asked Questions:

What is the most vital information I should know about dry needling?Dry needling is a technique that involves penetrating the skin, fascia, and muscles with a small filiform needle to address adhesions, trigger points, and connective tissue to improve healing and relieve the pain. During treatment and for up to 24 hours afterwards, people may suffer severe, dull discomfort.

How can you tell if dry needling is effective?Dry needling can help to relieve muscle pain and tension. When the needle is inserted into the trigger point, a twitch might occur, which could indicate that the therapy is effective.

Is it possible that dry needling will make matters worse?Increased incidence of symptoms, headaches, nausea, tremor, burning, and numbness were among the uncommon, sub-1% side events. From the customer viewpoint, “symptom aggravation” is among the most important considerations (and one of the least effective to be known/reported by physicians).

How many are dry needling sessions required?Patients who receive dry needling have an average of 2-3 sessions and very seldom utilize more than 5-6 sessions. In most cases, we will use dry needling once or twice a week, spread out across two or three visits.

Who isn’t suitable for dry needling?Some with lymphedema or who are pregnant in the first trimester may also be unsuitable candidates. Dry needling is not prescribed to people who have excessive blood clotting or immune system issues. Therefore, dry needling is also not recommended for children under the age of 12, according to the American Physical Therapy Association.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *