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RMADN - Jan 17, 2023
Although it might be intimidating, dry needling is a rehabilitative pain management alternative. Are there any dry needling adverse effects? It’s possible, as with any medical treatment. Physical therapists use extremely small needles to precisely target trigger points in your muscles during treatment. The trigger point is "released" by the needle, causing pain relief.
Scientific studies and contemporary Western medicine both support the use of dry needling. Due to its ability to relieve pain without the usual dangers and side effects associated with prescription painkillers and surgery, this therapy has become quite popular among patients. When done by a skilled physical therapist, dry needling is relatively safe, but like any treatment, there is a chance for a few small adverse effects.
Although the majority of patients have no issues, here is a deeper look at the possible adverse effects of dry needling.
The mechanical process of dry needling, in which the needle is handled and moved without the use of drugs, is regarded as being safe. Temporary pain or stiffness are some of the mild side effects that might happen. This is brought on by the twitch reaction, which is thought to be less painful than the trigger point discomfort.
The Side Effects of Dry-Needling
Dry needling is not appropriate for everyone. Patients with impaired immune systems, needle phobias, or skin issues should think about finding an alternative form of therapy for chronic myofascial pain.
Bruising may occur in the area where the needle is inserted but it’s a rare side effect and only is seen in about 10% of patients. Patients who are using blood thinning medication or suffer from blood vessel problems are more likely to have temporary bruising.
Mild bleeding may be seen shortly after the dry-needling treatment in the insertion site. It is a rare side effect but the same as temporary bruising it’s more likely to be seen in patients who have blood vessel problems.
This often happens 24 to 48 hours after treatment and may go away on its own, with mild movement, extending the affected area, or a light massage.
After treatment, it's normal to feel worn out, queasy, emotional, giggly or "loopy," and/or a little "out of it." This is a typical reaction that may persist for up to two hours following therapy. As a precaution, get in touch with your provider if this continues after a day.
How Long Do the Side Effects Last
After a dry-needling treatment, it's crucial to stay hydrated by drinking more water. Your healthcare practitioner may advise rest, hot or cold treatment, a warm bath with salt, or other at-home treatments if you have muscular discomfort in the hours following a treatment session.
The morning following your treatment, your muscles may feel more painful, but this should pass in a few days. Bruising might linger for a week. In the event that you suffer any adverse effects, inform your healthcare professional.
Most side effects are harmless and disappear shortly after the treatment. If your side effects aren’t disappearing and getting worse you should contact your dry-needling specialist.
Any patient considering dry needling treatment should first speak with their physician. You should notify your doctor or physical therapist if you experience any treatment-related adverse side effects.
Contact us to get more information about our dry-needling treatment process.