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Could Dry Needling Relieve Your Lower Back Pain?

Recent research has shown dry needling to be an effective treatment for trigger-point-related lower back pain when combined with other therapies. Could it be right for you? Read on to find out.

Lower back pain can be caused by myofascial trigger points- bundled spinal muscle that generates pain, tenderness, muscle spasms and referred pain. You may have heard of them referred to as knots. We all have these trigger points, but they remain deactivated. If activated by injury, illness, strain or another trigger, they can cause symptoms like pain.

Dry needling involves the insertion of a fine needle into the affected area, causing the trigger point to become deactivated. When the treatment is complete, you will experience immediate pain relief and an increase of range of motion and function.


How does dry needling deactivate trigger points?

There are a few explanations to describe how dry needling can deactivate trigger points and treat lower back pain. These include that the stimulation of blood flow eases the muscle contraction, reducing pressure from the knot. Another hypothesis states that dry needling is effective because it blocks pain signals.

While the exact science may still be unknown, studies show that dry needling can effectively release trigger points. The treatment is used by practitioners to treat a range of conditions including carpal tunnel syndrome, pain, injuries and headaches.


Is dry needling the same as acupuncture?

While both therapies use fine needles to target specific symptoms, the theory behind the two treatments differ.

Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese Medicine therapy that aims to unblock the body’s energy, called Qi. In an acupuncture practice, the therapist would typically treat the entire body holistically and insert needles into trigger points all over the body.

Dry needling does not follow this ancient philosophy. Instead, it is a more targeted treatment that focuses on specific muscles and trigger points.


How long does it take to recover from dry needling?

Dry needling can be done in a typical physiotherapy consultation and you can drive home after your treatment! Most patients experience mild tenderness during the treatment. Dry needling is a great alternative to serious injections and surgery where possible, as it does not require numbing the area and is cost-effective.


Should you only have dry needling?

Evidence shows that patients who have dry needling and another treatment experience greater pain reduction that if they only had dry needling. The other treatment could be physical therapy, acupuncture or a local anaesthetic injection

Your physio will determine the best treatment for you. If this includes dry needling, then you will receive the treatment from your physio during your consultation. Your physio may also recommend targeted at-home exercises, massage or further investigation.  


Visit your physio for dry needling to treat lower back pain

Do you suffer from lower back pain? The team at NDPE offer dry needling treatment for patients in the West Ryde area. Dry needling could help to release tender and stiff knots causing your pain. Book your appointment today.


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Northern Districts Physiotherapy

Northern Districts Physiotherapy & Sports Clinic was established in 1995 and consists of an energetic team of highly qualified and experienced professionals who take the time to understand ...


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