Trigger Point Dry Needling
Dry Needling uses thin, sterile, single use needle inserted in to the muscle to try and illicit a local twitch response. For most people this sounds intimidating, but it usually is quite tolerable. The patient will feel a light pinch at the beginning, then a little pressure or dullness, and then will feel the muscle twitch or do a quick contraction. Sometimes we will do some electrical stimulation on the trigger point to further release it and increase your body's systemic anti-inflammatories call cortisol and endorphins for pain relief.
Dry needling of a trigger point is highly effective and usually has immediate results.
Anatomy of a Trigger Point
What is a trigger point? Trigger points come in two types.
Latent and Active. Latent TrPs are just that.. they are
currently not causing an issue, but they can flare up at
any time. An active TrP is usually causing issues, right now.
Sometimes the pain can come and go, but unless it is
resolved, it typically does not go away.
Trigger Points can be tight bands of muscle that are typically
formed due to over use of a particular muscle or zone.
The muscle tissue becomes tight (and sometimes twisted)
which forms a tender area that sometimes feels like a pea or a marble and is very sensitive to touch and movement.
What causes a trigger point? Athletics, over use, computer work, driving, poor posture, injury or trauma, stress and illness. Most patients experience pain while doing simple tasks like driving, writing, sleeping or sitting. Even though a TrP can cause weakness and inhibition in the muscle or pain referral in another area of the body. One of the most concerns is that trigger points can cause decrease circulation in the area of the muscle where the TrP is active.