What is Dry Needling?

Dry needling consists of the insertion of thin, sterile, stainless steel needles into trigger points in muscles. The needles are stimulated by twisting or moving the needle to elicit a twitch response.

What is it used for?

Dry needling is primarily used to assist with pain relief, loosen tight muscles, improve joint motion and to help boost the body’s healing response after injury.

What conditions can Dry Needling be used for?

  • Headache and migraine
  • Neck and back pain (reducing muscle spasm, pain relief)
  • Shoulder pain – rotator cuff injury, bursitis, and impingement
  • Tennis Elbow or Golfers Elbow
  • Carpal Tunnel, De Quervains Synovitis
  • Hip pain – bursitis, tendinitis/tendinopathy, pain management in arthritis
  • Knee pain – pain management for OA or degenerative meniscal tears
  • Ankle/foot – plantar fasciitis, Achilles tendinopathy
  • Haematoma (cork thigh or deep bruising)

Is Dry Needling painful?

Depending on the technique used and amount of stimulation given, dry needling may leave you with a muscle ache for 12-24 hours after treatment. If this occurs you can manage your pain using heat and analgesics, as well as doing gentle stretching. If you have any concerns please contact your therapist.

Are there risks associated with Dry Needling?

Dry Needling has a very low risk of serious side effects (less than 1 per 10,000 treatments).
Please be aware that for some people:

  • Bruising or minor bleeding may occur after treatment.
  • Drowsiness can occur after treatment and you are advised not to drive if affected.
  • Sometimes you may feel pain during treatment, or have your symptoms aggravated for a period of time following treatment – this is often a good sign, but you should discuss this with your therapist.

If you have any concerns following your treatment please get in contact with your therapist.

Can I have Dry Needling while pregnant?

Generally physiotherapists won’t use dry needling on anyone who is in their first 12 weeks of pregnancy. If you are interested in receiving dry needling and are pregnant please discuss this with your physiotherapist.

Before having Dry Needling you need to let your therapist know if you answer yes to any of the following.

  • Do you have epilepsy or are prone to fainting?
  • Do you have a pacemaker or any other electrical implants?
  • Are you pregnant?
  • Are you taking blood thinning medication (ie. Warfarin), or have a bleeding disorder
  • Do you have any metal implants (ie. Joint replacement)
  • Are you taking immune modulating medication (ie. After organ transplant)
  • Do you have any blood borne diseases (ie. Hepatitis or HIV)

These conditions don’t necessarily mean you can’t have dry needling; rather that extra precautions may need to be taken.

Our clinic only uses stainless steel, single-use, disposable needles.

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