Dry Needling vs. Acupuncture – What is the difference?

Acupuncture and dry needling are two techniques used to alleviate pain and improve overall well-being.

Acupuncture and dry needling are two therapeutic techniques that involve the insertion of thin needles into the skin to alleviate pain and improve overall well-being. While these practices may appear similar, they are based on different philosophies and serve distinct purposes, especially when used in a physiotherapy context.

What is acupuncture?

Acupuncture is an ancient traditional Chinese medicine practice that has been around for thousands of years. It is based on the concept of “Qi”, which is believed to be the body’s vital energy flow. Acupuncturists insert needles into specific points along the body’s meridians to rebalance the flow of Qi and promote overall health and wellness. Acupuncture sessions can be relaxing and may address both physical and emotional aspects of well-being.

What is dry needling?

Dry needling is a more recent addition to the field of physiotherapy. It is based on Western medicine and is primarily used to target specific myofascial trigger points (muscle knots) that are causing pain or dysfunction. The practice involves inserting thin needles directly into these trigger points, which can elicit a twitch response from the muscle, followed by relaxation.

Dry needling aims to release tension, improve blood flow, and reduce pain in the targeted muscles. It is often used as a treatment for conditions such as chronic pain, muscle spasms, and sports injuries. Unlike acupuncture, dry needling does not rely on the principles of Qi and meridians but instead focuses on the physical aspects of muscular and nervous system function.

How can dry needling help?

In a physiotherapy context, both acupuncture and dry needling offer unique approaches to pain relief and overall well-being. The choice between the two will depend on your specific condition and treatment goals. Acupuncture focuses on balancing the body’s energy, promoting holistic health, and addressing both physical and emotional aspects. Dry needling, on the other hand, is a more modern approach geared toward alleviating specific muscular issues and pain. All of our staff are highly trained in dry needling and can utilise this to help your musculoskeletal conditions where appropriate.

If you are unsure how dry needling can benefit you, consult with a qualified physiotherapist who can recommend the most appropriate treatment based on your needs and preferences.

About us

Physiotherapy treatment and rehabilitation clinic located in Albany, WA. Services include Hydrotherapy, Dry Needling, Workplace Screening, Women’s Health, Postural Rehabilitation, Electrotherapy, Joint Replacement and Pilates classes.

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