Dry Needling

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Specialized Dry Needling in Hawaii

Our dry needling services in Hawaii help provide immediate, lasting improvement in your pain, strength, physical performance, and mobility.  

Dry needling uses the same needles involved in all of our acupuncture treatments. Just like with acupuncture, the needle is solid and does not contain any form of medication. Hence the term, “dry” needle. Dry needling may be known by other names, like trigger point dry needling, acupuncture dry needling or intramuscular stimulation. The key distinction between this practice and acupuncture is that, in the case of dry needling, the choice of where to needle isn’t based on Chinese medicine theory. 

Specialized Dry Needling in Hawaii

Our dry needling services in Hawaii help provide immediate, lasting improvement in your pain, strength, physical performance, and mobility.  

Dry needling uses the same needles involved in all of our acupuncture treatments. Just like with acupuncture, the needle is solid and does not contain any form of medication. Hence the term, “dry” needle. Dry needling may be known by other names, like trigger point dry needling, acupuncture dry needling or intramuscular stimulation. The key distinction between this practice and acupuncture is that, in the case of dry needling, the choice of where to needle isn’t based on Chinese medicine theory. 

Is Dry Needling Right for You?

Dry needling is one approach to needle therapy, applying a western understanding of the musculoskeletal system and neurophysiology to treating pain and injury. These are the same principles used in orthopedic and medical acupuncture. Having training in all of these approaches, we are able to apply the best method on a case-by-case basis. In the Jackupuncture clinic, dry needling is applied only after a thorough assessment of the patient and determining the most appropriate approach for their particular needs. This is important because the more familiar, narrow approach of dry needling that patients usually experience involves pistoning the needle into “knots” or tight muscles, which can exacerbate symptoms in a nervous system that is already struggling.

Jack was initially trained in dry needling for a year in acupuncture school, providing hundreds of hours of treatment using this technique of pistoning. While he continues to use this approach when necessary, as with all cases, the method of treatment will be based on the assessment and patient history. In most cases, instead of pistoning, we needle a specific area of the muscle called the motor point and introduce a gentle current to the needle. This is more comfortable and has been shown to be more effective over the more common approach patients imagine when they hear “dry needling.” This is known as dry needling with electrical stimulation or electroacupuncture. Studies show electroacupuncture to be the most effective approach to needle therapy for a variety of conditions.

dry needling in Hawaii

Dry Needling and Other Approaches

Dry Needling vs Acupuncture

Dry needling focuses myofascial trigger points (MTrP), which are highly sensitive areas within skeletal muscles that are characterized by a palpable knot within a taut band. Trigger point dry needling can be performed at either a superficial or deep tissue level. It is used to trigger local muscle and tissue responses in a specific region using a pistoning technique, whereas acupuncture takes a more holistic approach for a restorative whole body treatment.

Dry Needling vs Manual therapy

Dry needling uses needles as a tool to target soft tissue and specific muscles. At Jackupuncture, manual therapy is also referred to as soft tissue therapy, which is any form of therapy not involving a needle. Examples include red light and infrared therapy, hand-based soft tissue “release” or mobilizations, as well as tool-based soft tissue approaches like myofascial decompression/cupping and guasha/scraping to improve mobility and function. The most commonly used and successful soft tissue tool for manual therapy at Jackupuncture remains our hands, but whatever is best for your case will be used to ensure you get steady improvements with each visit.

Dry Needling with Electrical Stimulation

Dry needling with electrical stimulation can be a powerful combination to reduce muscle tone and spasm. If this approach is right for you, the electrical stimulation is added to the dry needle after it has been inserted into a specific target like a motor point or the belly of a dysfunctional muscle.

 

F.A.Q.s

What does dry needling feel like?

Dry needling feels like fine threading of the muscles. When the muscles are tight and the needle is pistoned through the fascia or soft tissue, the initial ‘needle grab’ by the muscle can feel like a light bee sting, but this dissipates within a few seconds. The goal of this approach is to achieve muscle contractions. Patients have reported slight discomfort with this. However, once the pistoning and contractions stop, they feel a sense of ‘release’ of the soft tissue.

Is dry needling painful?

The level of pain or tenderness experienced during and after treatment depends on several factors, which we assess to make the experience as therapeutic and comfortable as possible. Patients have reported experiencing more acute feelings of discomfort during dry needling than during acupuncture. The initial pain should dissipate within a few seconds.

Is dry needling safe?

Yes, dry needling is very safe when administered by trained and experienced professionals. It is a researched practice with positive results on people experiencing pain and looking for trigger point relief with certain conditions.

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