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Trigger point dry needling for pelvic floor pain

Experts at Rose Physical Therapy use trigger point dry needling can reduce pain in the muscles of the pelvis and perineum.

Much of the pain experienced in the pelvic floor is due to trigger points in the muscles surrounding the pelvis. The pelvis has many muscle attachments and each of these can develop painful trigger points. Trigger points are taut bands of muscle that refuse to fully relax, creating painful spots. Pelvic floor associated muscles that may develop trigger points include the abdominals, the pelvic floor, the glutes (gluteus minimus and maximus), the quadriceps or quads, the hamstrings, deep hip external rotators like the piriformis, and internal rotators like the Tensor Fascia Lata (TFL), iliotibial band (IT band or ITB), adductors, urogenital triangle, levator ani and coccygeu.

Referral patterns are common in the pelvic floor area

Many muscles have referral patterns in which ways pain is experienced through the nervous system. This means that the area where pain is felt may not be the area that is causing the pain. At Rose Physical Therapy, our physical therapists are specially trained to understand pain referral patterns from trigger points so they can effectively treat you, including the pelvic floor.


Why use trigger point dry needling for pelvic floor?

Trigger point dry needling can be used to get to the root of the problem by specifically targeting trigger points in a way that using hand massage cannot. For instance, pressing on an area of tissue cannot always get the appropriate pressure on the trigger point itself, often buried deep within the muscle tissue. In addition, applying pressure by using hands can often damage surrounding tissue because hands are larger than most trigger points. Dry needling solves these problems by allowing for direct targeting of the trigger point, allowing it to release and return to a relaxed state. For pelvic floor associated muscles, it can be challenging to use hands to get at every trigger point area, which is why dry needling can be so important to relieving pelvic pain.

How does dry needling work?

Dry needling involves inserting a thin sterile needle of varying lengths into a trigger point. The goal of trigger point dry needling is to elicit a twitch response, which is a sudden contraction and subsequent relaxation of the treated muscle. This allows the muscle to do a better job performing its role in stabilizing the pelvis and performing motion. Releasing the tightness in the muscle allows it to contract and relax better and improves the inherent strength of the muscle.

Unlike acupuncture which uses the same needles left in place for periods of time, in dry needling locates the trigger point and employs a “pecking” technique in which the needle is moved. This elicits a series of twitches from the trigger point and surrounding nerves, allowing the muscle to relax.


Dry needling of the pelvic floor is for both men and women

Dry needling is effective in treating pelvic floor pain in both men and women. Men with chronic pelvic pain, testicle and penis pain that developed years earlier and persists, often have significant relief from abdominal dry needling of the obliques.

Abdominal needling can also help reduce bladder urgency in new mothers and decrease pubic and labia pain in women with chronic pelvic pain. C-section scars treated with fascial needling are drastically improved in appearance and mobility of the scar tissue, removing adhesions and reducing the risk of pelvic pain and incontinence later in life. Dry needling can also yield drastic improvements in pelvic floor pain and sciatic nerve symptoms with dry needling to trigger points in the glute muscles.


Rose Physical Therapy is here in Washington, DC to help!

If you are experiencing pelvic floor pain, we have pelvic floor experts on hand to help. We can treat pelvic floor disorders at either our downtown location between Dupont Circle and Farragut Square in downtown Washington, D; or our Navy Yard and Capitol Riverfront office just a few blocks from Capitol Hill. Please give us a call or schedule through our website, making sure to mention that you are looking for a pelvic floor specialist in Washington, DC, and we’ll get you on the road to recovery!