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Trigger Point Dry Needling

TRIGGER POINT DRY NEEDLING AT ADVANCED SPORTS THERAPY

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF TRIGGER POINT DRY NEEDLING (TDN)?

  1. Relaxation of tight muscles
    • TDN can act as a "reset" button for tight muscles by altering the electrical activity and creating a twitch response within the dysfunctional or painful muscle.
  2. Increasing local circulation
    • TDN creates localized mictrotrauma which increases circulation and delivery of nutritional proteins and healing factors.
  3. Decreasing pain
    • TDN activates neurotransmitters such as beta-endorphins, enkephalins and dynophins, which block and/or distort transmission of pain information to the central nervous system.
  4. Improving flexibility, range of motion and function
    • TDN releases trigger points, increases blood flow and reduces pain, thus allowing improvement in muscle flexibility, joint range of motion, muscle function and overall movement quality.

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN TDN AND ACUPUNCTURE TREATMENT?

Trigger Point Dry Needling and acupuncture are similar in some ways, but very different practices. The short answer is acupuncture can only be provided by a licensed acupuncturist. Both use the same tools, very thin needles, but with a different approach. Here we will summarize the general differences between TDN and acupuncture.

Trigger Point Dry Needling is a skilled intervention which introduces a "dry" (no solution is injected with the hypodermic needle), monofilament needle into a specific tissue with the goal of creating a change in pain, bloodflow, and/or muscle tightness. It is an effective therapy to treat muscular tension and spasm which commonly accompanies conditions such as arthritis, nerve irritation, muscular strain, ligament sprains and spinal disc herniation.  Trigger points, or tight, irritated bands of muscles, are targeted to reduce pain and tension and improve flexibility and range of motion. The proposed mechanism behind the technique creates a microscopic injury to the target tissue, thereby jumpstarting the body’s natural healing response. Research shows that there is a significant increase in bloodflow in a target tissue after needling treatment. Often, the TDN intervention creates a local twitch reflex phenomenon, which is both diagnostic and therapeutic as the first step in breaking the pain-inflammation cycle.  Over the past decade, TDN has been increasing in popularity with healthcare practitioners including physical therapists, MDs and DOs in the US and abroad.   [JOSPT Perspectives for Patients, JOSPT, 2013; 43 (9)]

Acupuncture is an alternative medical practice based on traditional Chinese medicine philosophy which diagnoses pain and physical/mental ailments based on the flow of “Qi” energy. The system consists of the belief that this energy flows through different channels or “meridians” in the body. Needles are placed into certain points along these meridians to treat pain and disease by changing the flow of Qi. Some acupuncture practitioners use more modern anatomical and medical knowledge to inform their practice.

Physical Therapists at Advanced Sports Therapy have received advanced training to perform TDN safely and effectively as part of a comprehensive PT plan of care. We have found that while TDN itself is a beneficial treatment intervention, our patients reach their maximum potential when the treatment is combined with therapeutic exercise.  Please ask your AST PT or call our office for more information to find out if TDN could be an effective treatment option for you.

CONTACT US TODAY TO SET UP AN EVALUATION OR TREATMENT SESSION WITH ONE OF OUR CERTIFIED DRY NEEDLING SPECIALISTS!

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