Dry Needling and Acupuncture Q and A
Interest in dry needling and acupuncture continues to soar. Let’s answer the most commonly asked questions our physiotherapists are asked about dry needling and acupuncture. For more comprehensive information, read our page on Dry Needling and our blog titled ‘Dry Needling – In Simple Terms.’
What is the difference between acupuncture and dry needling?
Acupuncture is a relatively well known form of alternative therapy used by Chinese medicine practitioners. Acupuncturists use a holistic approach in an attempt to stimulate and enhance the body’s natural healing power. Acupuncture needles are inserted at specific points in an attempt to restore the flow of Qi (life force), which has been disrupted by illness or injury. People may seek acupuncture for assistance with pain conditions, organ damage, allergies, substance dependence, insomnia, etc. It is important to understand that acupuncture is not consistent with Western medicine and physiotherapists do not perform acupuncture.
Physiotherapists at My Physio Perth perform dry needling, which is a derivative of acupuncture. We insert acupuncture needles directly into an affected muscle in order to reduce spasm and pain. Read our Dry Needling page for more detailed information.
Does Dry Needling actually work?
Our physiotherapists achieve excellent results with dry needling. There is also a growing list of scientific literature confirming the effectiveness of dry needling. It is important to realize that dry needling is used to reduce pain and muscular spasm. It is not a miracle cure for injuries involving significant tissue damage such a muscle and ligament tears.
How does Dry Needling work?
Dry needling is a relatively new treatment technique and as such, scientific research is still occurring in order to understand precisely how dry needling works. We do know that it has a powerful effect on the electrical and chemical processes that occur in our neural system. A twitch response caused by the insertion of an acupuncture needle into an affected muscle seems to inhibit (stop) pain signals within our brain and spinal cord. In turn this allows the muscle to relax, restoring normal blood flow and normal function.
Is Dry Needling more effective than other treatment techniques?
Many therapeutic treatment techniques used by physiotherapists seem to initiate a similar pain relieving process to that described in the previous paragraph. It is my opinion that dry needling is more intense than most treatment techniques and therefore usually more effective for muscular pain and spasm. It is important to recognize that physiotherapists are experts in the assessment, diagnosis and treatment of musculoskeletal conditions. We will use a combination of treatment techniques to ensure the most optimal outcome for your particular condition. Dry needling in isolation is unlikely to ‘cure’ a condition or prevent recurrences.
Please contact My Physio Perth on 94476152 or [email protected] if you have any further questions or would like to book an appointment to receive dry needling.