Acupuncture is an ancient technique based on Traditional Chinese Medicine principles of the flow of Chi (energy) through the body. According to these principles illness and pain occur when the body’s Qi or Chi, or vital energy, cannot flow freely. There can be many reasons for this; emotional and physical stress, poor nutrition, infection or injury, are among the most common.
Acupuncture aims to treat pain by balancing Chi via insertion of needles at specific acupuncture points. The treatment involves using very fine needles, inserted at particular acupuncture points on the body that can help relieve the symptoms of a number of physical and psychological conditions. Acupuncture aims to help the body to heal naturally. It has the advantage of having few side effects and is particularly useful in both acute injuries and chronic conditions resilient to other treatments.
A growing body of evidence-based clinical research shows that traditional acupuncture safely treats a wide range of common health problems.
Acupuncture is a safe and drug free intervention. Once well monitored, acupuncture should have a definite affect after a couple of sessions, meaning prolonged treatment is not needed. Sometimes top up sessions are recommended at the patients discretion. Acupuncture is safe to have alongside conventional medical treatment.
Dry Needling is a very successful medical treatment, which uses very thin needles without any medication (a dry needle) to achieve its aims. Dry Needling is used to treat pain and dysfunction caused by muscle problems. Studies have also shown it to treat sinus trouble, headaches, and nerve problems amongst a host of other ailments.
How does it work?
Dry Needling (also known as trigger point needling) is a scientifically proven form of treatment to treat trigger nerve endings. The needle is inserted into the skin and muscle directly at the myofascial trigger point. A myofascial trigger point consists of multiple contraction knots, which are related to production and maintenance of the pain cycle. When the needle is inserted, very often a local twitch response is experienced. After a dry needling treatment the area in the muscle which has been treated feels much softer and relaxed and the person will feel looser. Very often people find that the pain they experience when a trigger point is being treated, be it local or referring, is a familiar type of pain or ache that they have. Different types of massage and manual therapies have proven to deactivate and relief the tender areas and pain which allowed the person to feel looser and less tight in their muscles.
How is it different to acupuncture?
There are many similarities and many differences between dry needling and acupuncture. Dry Needling is a newer, more modern technique than acupuncture. It is not Acupuncture. Acupuncture is part of traditional Chinese medicine, whereas Dry Needling is strictly based on Western medicine principles and research. One method does not suit all, so let us guide you to what is the best for you and your condition.
For further information please visit the British Medical Acupuncure Society(BMAS) website