Dry Needling Treatment is a skilled technique performed by physical therapists with specialized training. Dry needling is effective for resolving soft tissue dysfunction, such as, inflammation, tendonitis, contractures, trigger points, tissue adhesions, microcirculation, edema, and various other neuromusculoskeletal conditions.

What is Trigger Point Dry Needling?

DRY NEEDLING is an extremely effective technique that uses a solid filament needle to “deactivate” or “shut down” painful or knotted areas in your muscles. Many of us have areas in our body that feel tense all the time or feel like a hard ball in the muscle. By inserting fine needles into these tight areas, we elicit a “twitch response” or a brief contraction followed by an immediate and long lasting relaxation. Because the needle can treat very deep parts of the muscle, the technique can achieve amazing pain relief that you never thought was possible.

Part of a Comprehensive Solution

Dry Needling can be a powerful adjunctive treatment at Centreville Physical Therapy, though it is important to remember that Dry Needling is only one part of the treatment plan. Physical therapy will also address biomechanical muscle imbalances, postural dysfunctions, muscular flexibility limitation, strength deficits, and swollen or stiff joints. Physical therapy treatment may include: joint mobilization, a carefully designed therapeutic exercise plan, and advanced hands-on therapy techniques, it is in this sense that dry needling becomes an extension of already highly trained hands. This approach will restore a patient’s optimal physical function. A multidimensional treatment approach is paramount for a successful recovery.

When combined with other manual therapy and functional exercise can help the following conditions:

Acute and chronic tendonitis
Athletic and sports-related overuse injuries
Post-surgical pain
Post-traumatic injuries, motor vehicle accidents, and work related injuries
Chronic pain conditions
Headaches and whiplash
Lower back pain
Frozen Shoulder
Tennis Elbow
Muscle Spasms
Sciatic Pain
Hip Pain
Knee Pain
Repetitive Strain Injuries
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Plantar Fasciitis
** Along with a many other musculoskeletal conditions

Referral Process

Please ask your doctor for a physical therapy order for dry needling, and schedule an appointment at 703-222-5903.


Are there any side effects to the treatment?

Most patients report feeling sore following the procedure. Symptoms are usually described as soreness in the muscles of the treatment area and feel similar to the stiffness after an “over zealous” workout. Typically, the soreness lasts from a few hours up to two days. Over this time, we may recommend applying heat or ice over the area, gentle stretching, and/or modifying your daily activities (depending on your individual response to the treatment and how sore you feel).


Is dry needling painful?

The needle used in the procedure is very thin and most patients don’t even feel it penetrate the skin. When the needle is inserted into the trigger point it usually elicits a brief painful “twitch response” that some patients describe as a cramping sensation. This twitch response is the desired reaction because it means that the trigger point is being released.


Are the needles sterile?

Yes, we only use sterile, disposable needles and wear gloves to maintain a safe environment.


How long does it usually take to notice results?

Typically, patients notice a positive response within a few visits.