Sports Medicine & Orthopedic Acupuncture

How is it different?

Orthopedic and Sports Medicine acupuncture take a slightly different approach to treating pain and injuries than Traditional Chinese Medicine does. It adopts the advanced understanding of anatomy, muscle motor points, myofascial trains, posture, gait, and lifestyle influences, and how they all contribute to imbalances not only within the muscles themselves, but in their corresponding meridians. Utilizing needle techniques to manipulate muscles to relax, muscles are reset from a locked position, allowing for immediate results and creating space for the body to retrain itself to proper balance. With the help of manual muscle testing, acupuncture, myofascial and muscle release techniques, cupping, gua sha, electrostimulation, stretching, and strengthening exercises, patients can expect to see maximum results in a relatively short period when compared to typical recovery time. Patients report quicker recovery and lower incidences of injury when incorporating Orthopedic and Sports Medicine acupuncture into their training and healthcare regimen.


Sports Injuries and Pain

Musculoskeletal disorders are some of the most common disorders that people seek care for and are the number one reason they seek out acupuncture. Many studies exist that provide evidence of acupuncture’s effectiveness in treating musculoskeletal disorders such as low back pain, myofascial pain, neck pain, osteoarthritis, shoulder pain, knee pain, and tennis elbow. These studies have not only shown acupuncture’s success in treating these conditions, but also show its cost-effectiveness and long-term results when compared to the standard of care.

Studies have also demonstrated acupuncture's amazing ability to reduce pain by initiating the body to release endorphins that block pain signals to the brain. It is also able to help regenerate damaged nerves by rebuilding myelin, preventing the misfiring of nerves that leads to many chronic pain conditions. Along with these effects, various neurotransmitters in the brain, such as serotonin and dopamine, are released that reduce depression that can be related to chronic pain. Combining e-stim (electro-stimulation) with acupuncture treatments has also been shown to produce a release of endogenous opioids, resulting in a maximal therapeutic effect.

When a needle is inserted into the body, a cascade effect occurs where white blood cells, prostaglandins, red blood cells, serotonin, and pain modulators (substance P, glutamate) are released. All of these chemicals work together to heal local tissue. By creating a micro-trauma, the body's healing energy is focused to the area of pain to induce a quicker and more efficient healing response. This leads to increased blood circulation and reduced pain and inflammation.




Commonly Treated Conditions

  • low back pain
  • hip pain
  • knee pain
  • knee swelling
  • meniscus tear
  • ACL tear
  • patellofemoral pain syndrome
  • post-surgical recovery
  • rotator cuff injury
  • achilles tendonitis
  • muscle tension
  • neck pain
  • sprained ankle
  • muscle strains
  • tendonitis
  • plantar fasciitis
  • tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis)
  • golfer's elbow (medial epicondylitis)
  • De Quervain's tenosynovitis
  • traumas
  • carpal tunnel syndrome
  • thoracic outlet syndrome (TOS)
  • shin splints
  • stress fractures
  • sacroiliac joint dysfunction
  • sciatica
  • piriformis syndrome
  • bursitis
  • IT band friction syndrome
  • drop foot
  • frozen shoulder
  • wrist/hand pain

What to Expect as a New Patient

During your first visit, a thorough history of injury will be taken and an orthopedic examination and postural assessment will be conducted to assess the full extent of the injury and determine what course of treatment to take. Once this is determined, acupuncture needles will be placed and you will rest for a short period of time. Depending on the nature of the injury, tui na (Chinese medical massage), myofascial release, gua sha, cupping, electrostimulation, Kinesiotape, or an external poultice or liniment may be applied.

How Cupping Can Help you Recover

Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) occurs after doing a strenuous exercise you might not otherwise be accustomed to. To put it simply, microtrauma occurs to the muscle fibers leading to inflammation. Calcium can also build up leading to more inflammation and pain. Cupping stimulates blood circulation and lymphatic drainage to help filter out inflammatory factors, as well as repair any damaged muscle tissue. Cupping can be done right after any activity that can cause soreness, reducing its occurrence and helping you get back to your activity without the aches and pains that normally come along with it.

Dahms Acupuncture offers complimentary cupping during any acupuncture treatment. Thirty minute sessions are also available if preferred at a reduced rate. Please inquire for appointments and rates.

Myofascial Release & Tui Na

Myofascial release and tui na (Chinese medical massage) are corrective manual manipulation techniques that target specific areas of pain. They address muscle and fascia in a unique way, often utilizing passive and active movements while pressure is applied to improve function and proprioception. When combined with acupuncture, injury resolution has a greater outcome with lasting effects. Patients experience reduced pain and structural correction that address the root cause of why the injury often occurs. The style of acupuncture Talia incorporates balances the fascial planes that travel across the body, and these myofascial manipulation techniques align with this highly effective way of treating, leading to more effective results.

At-Home Care