+1 604-503-8022

What is Dry Needling Therapy? Benefits and Risks

What is IMS Dry Needling Physiotherapy?

Dry needling therapy was first developed in Japan during the 1970s as an alternative to acupuncture for treating pain without drugs or surgery. 


Dry needling therapy has been around for years, but it has only recently been brought into mainstream use. IMS Dry Needling Therapy stands for Intramuscular Stimulation is a form of treatment that involves inserting needles into muscles to relieve pain and reduce inflammation. The needles are typically inserted by a physical therapist or doctor during an appointment.


A practitioner inserts numerous thread-like needles into your skin. These needles are stainless steel needles that are fine and short and do not infuse fluid into the body. As a result, the name “dry” is adopted.


The needles are inserted into “trigger spots” in your muscle or tissue by practitioners. Dry needling is also known as intramuscular stimulation. The points are knotted or hardened areas of the muscle.


Dry needling practitioners claim that the needle aids in the release of knots as well as the relief of muscular discomfort and spasms. The needles will only be on your skin for a brief time. The duration is determined by the practitioner. Dry needling is taught to some healthcare professionals, such as physical therapists and massage therapists.

Dry Needling Vs Acupuncture

You could be confused if you simply compared dry needling and acupuncture visually. Acupuncture and dry needling both employ thin, stainless steel needles. Needles are put into the skin for both techniques, and both claim to relieve pain.That’s where the resemblance ends.

There are two characteristics that differentiate both. One approach has been utilized as an alternative medicine for thousands of years and has some strong studies to back it up. The other has become popular in recent decades.


It is claimed that by unlocking a person’s energy or blood flow, one might cure pain, discomfort, or other ailments. The other one is used to activate trigger points or irritated muscles.

Dry Needling Techniques

Here are two types of dry needling techniques used by practitioners:

1: Trigger Point Technique:
Some types of dry needling involve pistoning or sparrow pecking techniques. Both methods rely on in-and-out needle insertion. In other words, the needles are not left in the skin for long. The needles are inserted into the trigger points and then pulled. 

2: Non-Trigger Point Technique:
Some dry needling procedures address the entire central nervous system area. This is referred to as non-trigger point therapy. Instead of merely placing needles in the spot of pain, the practitioner may inject needles in areas around the distress rather than directly on it.


What are the conditions that dry needling can treat?

This approach is used to treat a variety of medical ailments, including:

  • Tension and chronic muscle cramps
  • Disk problems
  • Jaw and mouth problems, including TMD
  • Joint problems
  • Night cramps
  • Pelvic pain
  • Phantom pain
  • Post-herpetic neuralgia
  • Repetitive motion disorders, such as carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Sinus pain and congestion
  • Tendonitis
  • Headaches and migraine
  • Whiplash

What are the benefits of Dry Needling?

  • Quick Pain Relief: Trigger points are commonly associated with tightened muscles in the shoulder, upper back, and neck. However, the same issue can occur in any area of your body and be connected with a variety of illnesses, ranging from low back and neck discomfort to joint pain and repetitive injuries. As the knot relaxes and blood flow improves, your pain will disappear. Better circulation means that painful and acidic toxins are taken away when your muscles receive the required oxygen and nutrition to heal. After just one dry needling session, many patients report a rapid improvement in acute and broad pain. Others may require many sessions to attain optimal pain relief. The severity and frequency of trigger points determine your treatment plan.
  • Restore Your Range Of Motion: To develop strength and fully restore range of motion, go combined dry needling with a physical therapy treatment plan. Physical therapy also retrains your muscles, which aids in the prevention of future trigger points.
  • Promotes Recovery: Moving your body is the best approach to promote healing and speed up your recovery after an accident or surgery. During your rehabilitation, physical therapy will be your major treatment. However, including dry needling with physical therapy speeds up the process.
  • Treat Chronic Pain: Dry needling can help with two chronic pain conditions: myofascial pain syndrome and fibromyalgia. When trigger points form in the fascia, a layer of connective tissue that surrounds and supports all of your muscles, nerves, blood vessels, and organs, myofascial pain syndrome develops. Dry needling is one of the most effective therapies for this type of chronic pain.Fibromyalgia involves widespread muscular pain and discomfort. The pain influences your movement, which leads to trigger points. Patients with fibromyalgia who have dry needling frequently see a significant improvement in their overall soreness.

What are the risks involved in Dry Needling?

Mild side effects are common but there are no serious side effects that occur with Dry Needling.

The most common & minor side effects include:

  • Bruising
  • Bleeding
  • Temporary soreness or pain
  • Fainting 
  • Vomiting
  • Fatigue
  • Tiredness
  • Skin reactions
  • Headaches
  • Sweating
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Difficulty in Speaking
  • Gastrointestinal problems

Some Serious side effects:


  • Pneumothorax
  • Puncture of other vital tissue or organ
  • Systemic infection

Looking for IMS Dry Needling in Surrey?

Injuries and infections can occur when practitioners do not use sterile needles and gloves, especially when the therapist is inexperienced or underprepared.

In certain areas, a physical therapist can perform dry needling on clients after completing a training program that does not include comprehensive hands-on experience.


Vital Physiotherapy Clinic is a specialist for IMS Dry Needling in Surrey ready to fight for you if you are experiencing significant injury as a result of dry needling therapy or any other type of injury. 


For a free consultation, please contact us or call 6045038022 now.