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lancelotarnold

Dry needling vs. acupuncture: What the research says

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Dry needling and acupuncture involve puncturing the skin with thin needles for therapeutic purposes. While a shared aim is to provide relief from pain, the practices are otherwise very different.
Practitioners of dry needling attempt to release tension from knots and pressure points in muscles. Acupuncturists insert needles to release endorphins and affect the nervous system. Traditionally, acupuncture was used to align a person's energy, or chi.

While researchers have studied acupuncture as a complementary treatment for many conditions, dry needling is a newer practice, and the evidence is less comprehensive. Also, strict guidelines are in place for acupuncturists, but dry needling is not regulated.

In this article, learn more about the differences between these practices and what their benefits may be.

Dry needling vs. acupuncture

These practices share some similarities, and both claim to provide therapeutic relief from pain. However, they involve different methods and should not be confused.

People have used acupuncture for centuries, and it is now well regulated. Dry needling has been developed more recently, and there are no official guidelines.

Acupuncture can be used for a variety of medical conditions. The primary philosophy is that a body can be healed when chi, or healing energy, is released.

Dry needling is designed to relieve tightness and pain in muscles. Practitioners believe that inserting a needle directly into a knot or pressure point will release tension in the surrounding muscle.

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