Those who have known me as a physio, know that this is the first question I ask you when I want to use the dry needling with you.
Many of you think that I can´t wait to take my needles and practise voodoo with you, but that´s not true. You can believe me when I say dry needling is never my first choice.
But, first of all, specially for those who have never heard about it, let´s explain it.
Dry needling is a technique used in physiotherapy to kill the trigger points.
Now, you will be thinking that I have not explained what the dry needling is and I have already talking about another weird term: trigger point.
Trigger points are nodules inside a tense band of the muscle. These points cause pain in the point –and from a distance sometimes- and restrict the movement. They can appear in any muscle and, because of the muscles system is quite big in our body, it is very important to detect them and to not confuse them with other types of pain, such as visceral pain.
So, what dry needling does is to kill these points. Physiotherapists palpates the damaged area with their hands to find the painful point (trigger point) and then, a needle (that´s why is called needling) is introducing just there without inject any substance (for this reason is called dry). The needle provokes some spasms in the muscles which are beneficial (and painful as well, I´m not going to lie to you); this reduces the pain and increases the range of movement.
Using the dry needling properly makes it very effective, so I promise you I only use it when I am sure you will get better with it. I am not crazy about needles! Hahaha
Contractures or chronic pains that do not disappear even after have tried many therapies, headches caused by tension, “tennis elbows” or located points in very deep muscles where it is very difficult to get with our hands, are some cases where I would use dry needling wiht no doubt.
After doing a dry needling, to apply another technique such as massage, stretching, cold spray… is needed.
And the most important thing, please, MAKE SURE the professional who makes you the dry needling is a PHYSIOTHERAPIST.
In our next episode about dry needling…
“Promise me you are not using dry needling today” Jaime.
“I want you to poked me my whole life” Elena.
“Paula, I am not leaving until you poked a needle on me” David.
Love or hate, whatever you feel about dry needling, I claim it sounds much worse than it is actually. If you try it, you will want to repeat it!