The Differences Between Traditional Dry Needling vs Acupuncture

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Did you know that around half of the US adult population has tried some form of alternative medicine?

Two popular alternative therapies are acupuncture and dry needling. They may look like similar treatments to an untrained eye. Yet, they’re very different, and it’s essential to understand which treatment option suits you best.

Continue reading to learn about the differences between dry needling vs acupuncture.

What Is Dry Needle Therapy?

Dry needling is a modern therapy that can help relieve muscle pain, tension, and cramping. It can also help improve flexibility.

A dry needle therapist is usually a physical therapist that has undergone extra training to be certified. They’ll insert thin needles into the skin at “trigger points” in the muscle and tissue.

Penetrating a knotted area with a needle can relieve muscular pain and stiffness. And it can relieve or decrease spasms. Needles may be inserted superficially or deeply into the skin, depending on the patient’s type of pain.

Dry needling therapy is often used for treating sports injuries. It’s also helpful for people suffering from fibromyalgia pain or muscular distress.

What Is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is an ancient medical practice that originated in China around 3000 years ago. A practitioner of acupuncture is a licensed specialist who has completed years of extensive training.

This therapy also centers around very thin needles which are inserted into meridian lines throughout the body. These are paths through which the life-energy, known as “chi,” flows.

The fundamental belief of acupuncture is that blocked chi can lead to a range of health problems. And an acupuncturist will use needles to balance the body’s energy flow to restore better health. There are plenty of studies that prove acupuncture is an effective form of health care.

Acupuncture is a holistic treatment that is often used to treat musculoskeletal problems. It’s also a popular treatment for nausea, migraines, anxiety, depression, allergies, insomnia, and much more.

Dry Needling vs Acupuncture: The Major Differences

There are significant differences between the two treatments. Acupuncture offers ancient wisdom for modern-day relief by placing needles along energy pathways. And dry needling is more of a Western approach to acupuncture, placing needles at trigger points or knotted muscles.

The two therapies have different goals. Acupuncture is attempting to restore balance and proper energy flow within the body. Meanwhile, dry needling’s primary goal is to provide a healing response at the site of the needle’s entrance.

Acupuncture is a holistic approach designed to solve the root problem of your health issues. It can be used to treat a wide range of physical and mental problems.

Dry needling is an effective therapy for providing an immediate reduction in local pain. And it’s excellent for treating various musculoskeletal issues.

Consider What Suits You Best

Well, now you understand the key differences between dry needling vs acupuncture. Acupuncture offers a more holistic approach. Yet, dry needling is also a great treatment to help improve the body’s functioning.

Was the information in this article helpful? If you want to know more, visit this page to learn what would happen on your first acupuncture visit.

Meet Our Expert: Deborah Farley

Deborah FarleyFounder of Acupuncture Works,LLC in Lynchburg Virginia. Deborah is licensed by the Commonwealth of Virginia Board of Medicine as a Licensed Acupuncturist (L. Ac.).

She is also licensed by the State of Florida as a Doctor of Oriental Medicine (DOM). Deborah is a Diplomate of the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM).

She graduated from the East West College of Natural Medicine with a Master’s Degree in Oriental Medicine and a Bachelor’s Degree of Professional Health Sciences.

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