WAVE Physical Therapy & Pilates


Can Dry Needling Help Sciatica?

Sciatica is a type of back or leg pain caused by pressure on the sciatic nerve. This may occur from injury, herniated discs, or other causes. Physical therapists frequently employ dry needling to reduce pain and increase mobility for their patients with sciatica. It is a safe, effective treatment option.

Trigger Points

Trigger points are localized areas of muscle or fascia that can cause discomfort. They may be due to postural imbalance, repetitive motion, or the residual effects of old but healed injuries. Trigger point therapy is a treatment that uses dry needling to break up these knots and relieve your pain. Your therapist will begin by asking you to sit or lie down, then use their hands to locate and press on your trigger points.

Your therapist will then apply deep pressure to these points in order to release them. This may cause pain, tingling, numbness or other sensations during the session. Trigger points in your gluteal muscles can cause referred pain that may appear to be sciatica-like symptoms. That is why it’s so important to regularly inspect these muscles for any signs of sciatica-like discomfort.

Joint Inflammation

Joint inflammation can occur for various reasons, including injury. It could also be indicative of an inflammatory disease such as rheumatoid arthritis (RA) or gout. In RA, the immune system attacks joint membranes (synovium), leading to fluid buildup that makes your joint painful and stiff or appear larger than usual. Gout occurs when uric acid crystals form inside your joints which also cause discomfort.

If your joint swelling does not subside after six weeks of conservative treatments such as rest, ice, compression and elevation (RICE), then it’s time to see your doctor. A healthcare provider will check for signs of infection such as fever or redness in the affected joint. Treatments can include oral NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) and physical therapy to help you manage your condition. Exercise also has been known to reduce pain and inflammation.

Muscle Tightness

Tight muscles can cause pain and stiffness that hinders movement, especially in key areas for daily activities. They may also alter how someone moves and create imbalances which could lead to injuries elsewhere. In some instances, tight muscles can actually damage nerves. This condition is known as neuromuscular disorder and may be a symptom of another medical issue that requires treatment.

Physical therapists may utilize dry needling to alleviate muscle tightness and spasticity. This involves inserting very fine needles into the affected area. The needles penetrate the trigger point and stimulate muscle relaxation, increasing blood flow to the affected area that can reduce pain and speed up healing. It may cause mild muscle soreness after the treatment, and it may take multiple sessions before your muscles are back to normal. This is because trigger points are located deep within the body and require multiple treatments in order to achieve maximum benefit.

Pain Management

Pain management is an extensive field that includes medications, physical therapy and spinal injections. Doctors usually collaborate with a multidisciplinary team of pharmacists, physiotherapists and clinical psychologists to craft the ideal package of treatments for you.

Dry needling is a technique that uses thin filiform needles to target trigger points in muscles. This promotes healing, reduces banding or tightness and eases local and referred pain. Dry needling is a physical therapist’s technique of inserting needles into trigger points that may be causing sciatica. The needles help identify and release tightened muscles, relieving pressure on the sciatic nerve.

Dry needling is a technique used to reduce pain and enhance movement for those suffering from neuropathic pain (nerve pain that occurs when nerves fire a signal to the brain even when they aren’t damaged). It may also help reduce stiffness and sensitivity in joints. If you’re interested in learning more about dry needling and other treatments, feel free to contact us at WAVE Physical Therapy & Pilates.


PHYSICAL THERAPY
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PILATES
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YOGA THERAPY
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ACTIVE RELEASE TECHNIQUE
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BLOOD FLOW RESTRICTION
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CHRONIC PAIN
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CUPPING
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GRASTON TECHNIQUE
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IASTM
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MANUAL THERAPY
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ORTHOPEDIC THERAPY
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PELVIC FLOOR THERAPY
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DRY NEEDLING

SOFT TISSUE MOBILIZATION
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SPINAL MANIPULATION
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SPINE THERAPY
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SPORTS REHABILITATION
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THERAPEUTIC EXERCISE
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VESTIBULAR THERAPY