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Acupuncture and Dry Needling Services

Acupuncture and dry needling are increasingly being used by physiotherapists to help people suffering from muscular and soft tissue pain. Research into this treatment have found it is effective in reducing pain and muscle spasm and a helpful addition to standard physiotherapy management, for a variety of conditions including sports injuries (see our sports physiotherapy page for more info). 

What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is an ancient holistic therapy which is believed to have been developed in China over 3000 years ago. It involves extremely thin, sterile, flexible needles being inserted superficially (only a few millimetres deep) into muscles and soft tissue.

By simply inserting the dry needle into the appropriate acupuncture point, pain relief can be achieved through the reflex relaxation of an active trigger point. This relaxation has been shown with controlled clinical trials to be caused by the reflex inhibition of small diameter peripheral nerve endings. Pain caused by active trigger points has been recognised for over 50 years in medical science.

However, by combining dry needling with Traditional Chinese Medicine principles, acupuncture can work at a deeper level. When used along specific points, acupuncture can stimulate or depress certain musculoskeletal, myofascial and soft tissue structures.

Is dry needling the same as acupuncture?

We’ve noticed a lot of our clients use the terms “dry needling” and “acupuncture” interchangeably. However, they are not the same, even though the goal is the same (reduce pain and muscle spasm). Acupuncture tends to use thinner needles and mostly can’t be felt very strongly. Dry needling tends to require thicker needles and aims to elicit a stronger response from the muscles and soft tissue where the needle is being inserted. Acupuncture can last for 20 mins and be very relaxing. Dry needling may only last for a few mins, but these can be very intense mins.


What are the benefits of acupuncture?

  • Pain relief by reducing muscle spasm and encouraging the release of endorphins
  • Improving circulation by relaxing muscles that are tight/cramping
  • Reducing stress and increasing feelings of calm due to the release of endorphins 
  • Reducing soft tissue and muscle tightness which allows patients to find the right muscles to activate during rehabilitation
  • Reducing tenderness of trigger points 

What conditions does acupuncture treat?

Acupuncture is very effective for muscle aches and pains and is used in conjunction with other treatments such as manual therapy. It works really well to alleviate headaches and jaw pain.

Acupuncture provides excellent relief of aches and pain in any area of the body which is fleshy, such as shoulder pain, hip pain and gluteal pain. Acupuncture can also be helpful in the case of acute swelling when patients sustain sports injuries like ankle sprains. 

Book Acupuncture in Newtown & Darlinghurst​

Our team of highly skilled physiotherapists are experienced in providing effective acupuncture treatments to help relieve pain and improve mobility. Whether you’re dealing with chronic pain or recent injury, we can work with you to develop a treatment plan that will help you achieve your goals. If you’re interested in learning more about our acupuncture services, or any of the other services we offer, please don’t hesitate to call us on 9519 4913 or book online.

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Acupuncture & Dry Needling FAQs:

This is a question we are asked a lot. Sometimes dry needling does hurt but only like a deep sting in the muscle your physio is inserting the needle into. The sting will only last a few seconds and your muscle should feel better quite quickly once the needle is removed and the muscle has released. 

Yes – more and more research into dry needling is finding is helpful in cases such as osteoarthritis and plantar fasciitis. Of course, dry needling doesn’t “cure” these conditions. But it can help in the short term to relieve pain and get you moving better. 

There is no extra cost for the use of acupuncture or dry needling during your physiotherapy session. You will only need to pay our usual treatment fees. 

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