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Trigger Point Dry Needling

Trigger Point Dry needling is a western style of acupuncture. This needle therapy is sometimes called intramuscular needling, biomedical acupuncture, trigger point needling, or myofascial needling. This therapeutic needling technique targets the nervous system through neuro-points, trigger points, motor points, and tight tender points in the fascia. These points are called ashi points in Traditional Chinese Medicine and don’t necessarily follow the Chinese Meridian System.

Trigger Point Dry Needling’s therapeutic effect can help with musculo-skeletal pain including neck pain, shoulder pain, lower back pain, hip pain, and knee pain. Dry needling technique can be used for anywhere on the body including the cervical, thoracic, or lumbar spine. Dry needle treatments release tight spasmed muscles anywhere in the body and can be used for migraines, piriformis syndrome, sciatica, and plantar fasciitis.

Trigger Point Dry needling therapy, if done by a properly trained acupuncturist, has very few side effects. Soreness after the treatment can occur along with occasional bruising. If done skillfully, the treatment should not be painful.

Trigger Points: Janet G. Travell, MD, (1901–1997) defined a trigger point as “a hyper-irritable spot in skeletal muscle that is associated with a hypersensitive palpable nodule in a taut band. The spot is tender when pressed and wil give rise to characteristic referred pain, motor dysfunction, and autonomic phenomena.” Myofascial trigger points can be inactivated by acupuncture dry needling.

Motor Points: Also known as motor end plates or neuro-muscular junctions. These are locations where the nerves in the body connect to the muscles. When dysfunction occurs at the motor point, a cascade of events take place called the pain-spasm cycle. The muscle in spasm squeezes the nerves and blood vessels that feed it. Ironically, it takes energy and nourishment via the blood vessels to sustain the contraction and the supply has been cut off. Not only is the supply of nourishment cut off, but the ability of the muscle to clear out the waste products is also compromised. This creates pain and inflammation which causes further contraction which causes more pain and so on and so on. Acupuncture dry needling can effectively break this cycle and restore the muscles back to health.