Myofascial pain refers to pain that directly affects the tissue that connects to and covers muscles throughout the body. This discomfort can be severe and may cause the affected areas to be highly sensitive until properly treated. While there are a wide range of treatments that can be used to help alleviate this discomfort, likely the most effective treatment is dry needling, which is detailed further in the following.
What Is Dry Needling?
This is designed specifically to treat discomfort in certain areas of the body where myofascial pain is present. This treatment involves pushing very thin needles directly through the skin and into any affected trigger point.
These needles don’t inject medication but instead stimulate the tissue in an attempt to eliminate any aching or tension in the area. In many cases, these needles will only stay in the skin for a few seconds. On the other hand, they may need to be kept in place for upwards of 10-15 minutes when treating more severe or longstanding chronic pain.
What Are Trigger Points?
Trigger points are sensitive spots that can be found in soft tissue. These spots are commonly referred to as muscle knots and can result from any number of different injuries and health conditions. When trigger points are touched, the discomfort than at individual experiences can be very noticeable.
What Conditions Does It Help With?
This specific treatment is primarily used to alleviate the pain that’s caused by the presence of trigger points. However, it can also help to increase a person’s range of motion that’s limited by scar tissue or muscle tightness. Some of the additional conditions that this treatment can assist with include:
- Muscle cramps or spasms
- Spinal problems
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Joint issues
- Muscle inhibition
Is It Painful?
Each individual experiences a different sensation when the needles are applied to the skin. When a needle is inserted into the trigger point, such side effects as muscle twitching, temporary muscle soreness, and brief aching are to be expected. However, this treatment isn’t considered to be painful in the majority of cases.
How Long Does It Take for It to Work?
While a reduction in discomfort and poor mobility should be felt within 24-48 hours, additional treatment sessions may be necessary to achieve long-lasting effects.
Is There Scientific Research Behind It?
Extensive research has been performed to test the efficacy of this particular treatment. Most of these studies suggest that this treatment is as effective as most physical therapy treatments with the benefit of providing quicker results.
If you are interested in learning more about dry needling and the benefits that can be derived from this treatment, contact Gainesville Acupuncture & Holistic Medicine today to schedule an appointment.