Dry needling is a broad term used to differentiate “non-injection” needling from the practice of “injection needling”. Dry needling utilises a solid, filament needle, as is used in the practice of acupuncture, and relies on the stimulation of specific reactions in the target tissue for its therapeutic effect.
The term dry needling is also used to differentiate the use of needling in a western physiological paradigm from the use of needling in an oriental paradigm which is referred to as acupuncture.
Dry Needling plus is an approach to musculoskeletal dry needling that does not emphasise (though does not exclude) the location and treatment of trigger points in the intramuscular tissue.
It is a fusion of traditional meridian therapy (a Japanese style of acupuncture) palpation and a variety of needling techniques applied based on a system of light palpation, tissue sensitivity and movement testing and neurodynamic assessment.
The dry needling plus approach employs more superficial and more comfortable techniques than those used in approaches based on de-activating muscle trigger points. This has obvious benefits for patient and practitioner alike.
It addresses many of the difficulties often experienced by practitioners of trigger point focussed dry needling approaches such as treating mechanical pain presentations where a degree of central sensitisation exists and clinical presentations where trigger points are difficult to localise or absent.
In the hands of a skilled practitioner, dry needling can be used in most cases with less energy expenditure on behalf of the practitioner to equal or better effect than other manual techniques. If practiced well there is also a remarkable absence of the “post treatment tissue soreness” often experienced by the subject following other manual therapy interventions.
Your physiotherapist will discuss with you if dry needling will be an affective form of treatment and discuss with you the benefits of dry needling specific to your ailment.