Physiotherapists can utilize the insertion of thin acupuncture needles into tight bands within a muscle to release the tension that may be causing pain and loss of movement. This technique goes by a few different names depending on the training program that the physiotherapist has taken. The most common terms are Dry Needling and Intramuscular Stimulation or IMS. In general, these techniques are very similar. Check out the qualifications of the physiotherapists on the ‘Meet Our Team‘ page of our website to see who can offer you this technique. At Kamloops Physiotherapy & Sports Injury Centre we use dry needling to relieve pain and tension in your muscles to allow you to move better. We can help you learn new movement strategies so your muscles don’t continue to develop excessive tension and pain.

The insertion of a thin acupuncture needle into a tight band or “trigger point” within a muscle causes the band to momentarily tighten further. The muscle fiber contracts around the needle and often twitches. This is then followed by a relaxation of the muscle. This muscle response releases tension, pain and compression and allows a window of opportunity for retraining proper movement patterns. The results of dry needling are often cumulative, with longer lasting results after several treatments. After 2-3 treatments we can usually tell if it will be an effective tool for pain relief for your problem.

When the muscle contracts around the needle it is often felt like a pressure, a grab, or a cramp. It can be uncomfortable and sometimes painful but it is very fast. The needle is removed within a few seconds. This is one way in which dry needling differs from acupuncture. In acupuncture, multiple needles are left in for 15 or more minutes. The needles used are the same with dry needling and acupuncture but the technique and response is different.

To book an appointment today to learn more about dry needling and find out whether it could be appropriate for you, call 250-314-0788 or book online HERE.