We get a lot of questions and requests at our clinic for Dry Needling. Patients often want to know what the difference is between Dry Needling (FDN) and Traditional Chinese Acupuncture (TCM).
What is Dry Needling?
In recent years, dry needling has gained traction amongst physical therapists and chiropractors as an effective practice that elevates patient care. Dry Needling or Functional Dry Needling (FDN) is a form of treatment used mainly by chiropractors and physiotherapists to treat pain and motor disfunction in muscles by using fine needles that are inserted at trigger points into a patient.
The practitioner will insert needles at a myofascial trigger point and briefly piston the needle up and down before removal.
One of the most popular and reputable courses for Dry Needling is Kinetacore Dry Needling:
www.kinetacore.com. This course is currently available for practicing Chiropractors, Physiotherapists or Medical Doctors.
How does it work?
Trigger points are small, tight areas of muscle that are known to cause pain throughout larger muscle areas also known as “myofascial pain syndrome.” Dry Needling works by stimulating the selected trigger point to release the tightened muscle resulting in pain relief and increased muscle function.
This helps normalize muscle function and speed up rehabilitation.
Does it hurt?
Typically the insertion of the needle will produce little discomfort. When a muscle is shortened and “tight” with active trigger points, the patient may feel a sensation similar to a muscle cramp when the needle hits a trigger point. This is called the “twitch response”, and is effective at alleviating muscle tension. Many patients who recognize the effectiveness of Dry Needling welcome this “trigger point release” as they experience a reduction in pain and increase in range of motion.
Why is Dry Needling beneficial?
The dry needling procedure offers an new and alternative treatment to people suffering with myofascial pain.
The insertion procedure is very quick and relatively painless.
Patients are left with only slight soreness afterwards, compared to more invasive and painful procedures.
The treatment can also be used in conjunction with other physical therapies as part of a well-rounded and comprehensive treatment plan.
What is the difference between Traditional Chinese Acupuncture and Dry Needling?
It is important to note that dry needling and acupuncture are not the same thing!
While both treatments involve the insertion of fine needles into the body, the practices have different applications and produce different results.
Notable differences include:
- Acupuncture is rooted in Traditional Chinese medicine while Dry Needling is based on the neuro-musculoskeletal system. Treatment with Dry Needling is done based on the patient’s orthopaedic examination.
- Acupuncture uses needling locations that are based off of Traditional Chinese meridians, while Dry Needling is based off of functional locations addressing motor points.
- Acupuncture reduces pain and restores “chi” and energy balance while Dry Needling resets muscles in addition to reducing pain.
What can Dry Needling be used for?
Dry Needling can be used to treat a variety of injuries including:
- Rotator Cuff Tendinitis
- Chronic Lower back pain
- Cervicogenic Headaches
- Hamstring Strains
- Piriformis Syndrome
- Medial Epicondylitis (golfer’s elbow)
- Lateral Epicondylitis (tennis elbow)
- Patelofemoral syndrome
- Achilles tendinitis
- Groin Strains
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
- Impingement Syndromes
Major areas of focus include the shoulders, neck, back and hips.
If Dry Needling is of interest to you, contact our office for an initial appointment and assessment.
Kinetic Edge offers Dry Needling in Ottawa as part of our chiropractic services by Dr. Joanna Taylor.
Dr. Taylor holds many certifications in Dry Needling and Neurofunctional Acupuncture, including Kinetacore Dry Needling (FDN), Advanced Neurofunctional Acupuncture (McMaster University), Contemporary Medical Acupuncture (McMaster University) and Motor Point Acupuncture (Exstore System). Visit www.kineticedgehg.com or call 613-680-7966 to book!
Kinetacore Dry Needling: www.kinetacore.com
McMaster Neurofunctional Acupuncture: www.mcmasteracupuncture.com