Updated: Dec 5, 2022
A physical therapist recently treated a patient with pain around her kneecap, preventing her from running, one of her favorite activities. He inserted an ultrathin needle into a knotted muscle in her thigh. He gently moved it up and down before trying another needle in a different location on her upper leg.
After the dry needling procedure, the muscle relaxes, and the needle penetrates the bone. Matt Briggs, a physical therapist at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, can tell whether the needle has penetrated the muscle by observing whether it moves effortlessly through the muscle or gets stuck. According to Alex Pierce, a patient who received dry needling, the procedure did not hurt, and increased muscle function relieved pressure on her knees.
Here are some reasons why people are turning to this treatment more and more:
Dry needling does not inject medicine or injects.
Briggs can bend the needles with his finger because they are so thin. These needles are not the same ones used to inject people; they are for sterilizing surgical instruments.
Dry needling can address the source of issues or pain more swiftly than other treatments.
A therapist who wants to perform dry needling must receive extensive training and regular skill maintenance.
The procedure can relieve chronic pain, tension headaches, muscle tension, neck and shoulder pain, and TMJ pain.
The mechanism by which dry needling reduces muscle soreness is not fully understood, which is why Briggs is researching the effects of the technique on a runner's knee pain, a frequent condition. Patients often rave about dry needling for various ailments, but Briggs wants some evidence to verify its efficacy.
According to Briggs, people are rarely aware of the needles going in but sometimes feel cramps or aches as the muscle relaxes. ' 'There is a theory that dry needling alters the way nerves and muscles operate, and even how our spinal cords receive pain, ' he says. ' 'We hope to examine those concepts during the experiment. '
It can be used independently, but it is frequently combined with massage, foam rolling, electrical stimulation, and strengthening and stretching workouts.
Before dry needling, patients undergo a thorough evaluation to see if the treatment is appropriate for them.
A doctor or nurse practitioner must refer patients to receive sports medicine services, which are provided for a fee.
The therapy helped after a couple of sessions, going deeper than massage and easing tense leg muscles.
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