Dr. Rachel Vittardi, DC provides Dry Needling services at Revive Chiropractic Healing Center both as a standalone treatment and in conjunction with Chiropractic care.

What is Dry Needling?

Dry Needling is a technique that utilizes thin, sterilized, solid filament needles to treat musculoskeletal pain and movement malfunction associated with myofascial trigger points, muscle spasms, or dysfunctional tissue. When dry needling is applied to your muscles and tissues, it can decrease tightness, increase blood flow and reduce local and referred pain. Providers use solid needles that don’t contain any kind of medication. This is why the technique is called “dry.” Your provider will insert the needle beyond the subcutaneous tissue, deep into your muscle to penetrate the trigger point. Stimulating a trigger point with a needle helps draw normal blood supply back to flush out the area and release tension. The prick sensation can also activate nerve fibers that stimulate your brain to release endorphins, your body’s homemade pain medication.

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What is a trigger point?

Trigger points are knotted, hyperirritable areas that develop in your muscles, often presenting as a palpable nodule in the muscle’s fascia. Trigger points are highly sensitive and can be painful when touched. Sometimes, a trigger point may be near the location of your pain, or they may cause referred pain that can affect another part of your body.

What type of health conditions can be treated with Dry Needling?

Dry Needling can be used to treat various types of health conditions including alleviating headaches, temporomandibular disorder (jaw pain), neck pain, low back pain, joint pain, upper shoulder tightness, pain between shoulder blades, tendinopathy, arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, hip pain, Achilles pain, and much more.

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What are the side effects of Dry Needling?

You may experience an increase in pain or soreness for one to two days after treatment followed by an expected increase in your overall symptoms. Also, you may experience a small bruise or fatigue feeling following treatment as there is an increased amount of blood flow to the area and your body may require extra assistance in healing tissue dysfunction.

What does Dry Needling feel like?

You may feel discomfort during the procedure. Sometimes, people don’t feel the needle going in because it is so small, but other times, people will feel a little prick. When the needle is in the trigger point, it can be uncomfortable and cause a muscle twitch response. Afterward, you may feel tightness or soreness near the insertion site, but it’s important to keep moving and stretching.

What is the difference between Acupuncture and Dry Needling?

Both procedures involve penetrating your skin with needles and even use the same type of needles, but that’s where the similarities end. Acupuncture is based on Eastern Medicine philosophies and performed by Licensed Acupuncturists which can be used to treat musculoskeletal pain, but is commonly used to treat many other systems of the body. Dry Needling is based on Western Medicine and uses the evaluation of pain patterns, movement, and orthopedic tests to help pinpoint muscle dysfunction. Dry needling treats muscle tissue, therefore the needles are inserted deeper with the goal of reducing pain, increasing blood flow and improving movement.