Dr Bacon Pain Management

Pain Management Using Cold and Heat

If done correctly when done correctly, a combination of heat and cold therapy can provide relief for three to five working days. This therapy is particularly beneficial for injuries sustained over time and tears to muscles. The cold therapy helps reduce the pain and inflammation through dilation of blood vessels. This stimulates a greater flow of blood to the area that is injured. It also helps with chronic joint pain. The best part is that both types of therapy can be combined!

Inflammation is lessened
Cold therapy is more effective than heat therapy in reducing inflammation and blood flow to the affected areas. The cold therapy reduces swelling and warmth therapy increases blood flow and draws in more nutrients. Because of its calming effects on joints heating therapy is particularly efficient in pain management. Which therapy should you choose to ease pain? Here are some suggestions. Be sure to check out our helpful chart. Let’s look at how cold and heat therapy interact.

Ice therapy can be very efficient in decreasing swelling and inflammation. Ice therapy also helps reduce swelling and inflammation. It can also trigger the sensation of numbness that slows down the brain’s pain signals. There are numerous effective cold therapy options, including the use of ice baths, homemade packs, and chemical cold pack. It is recommended to follow the same procedure as heat therapy and limit cold exposure. Do not leave the ice pack on the skin for more than 20 mins as this can result in ice burns and hives.

Swelling is decreased
Although cold therapy can reduce swelling, there are some limitations. Patients suffering from chronic injuries should not use this treatment. Cold therapy should not be used on open wounds and should not be considered for those suffering from circulatory or neuropathy conditions. Patients suffering from infections must consult their physician prior to using this therapy. Cold therapy should also be applied to the affected areas only during the early stages of the pain.

In general, doctors suggest applying ice first to decrease swelling, then applying heat to alleviate discomfort. The heat therapy increases blood flow and helps warm muscles prior activities. Cold therapy however, slows blood flow and reduces swelling and pain. For the most effective relief, patients should wrap the affected area with a thin towel. For best results cold therapy should be used for at least 15-20 minutes several times per day.

Reduces pain
It’s dependent on the type and severity of the injury which treatment is more efficient in relieving pain. For acute pain, like a muscle strain heating is the best treatment. Cold therapy is recommended for chronic pain, such long-term joint pain. However, there isn’t a exact and definite rule for which is more efficient. Cold therapy is beneficial for those suffering from joint pain.

Cryotherapy or cold therapy is used to decrease swelling and inflammation. It helps reduce tissue damage by blocking nerve activity. It numbs muscles , and reduces nerve activity. It reduces swelling and inflammation by reducing nerve activity. However cold therapy isn’t suitable for certain people including pregnant women. Because cold therapy causes the body to respond differently to heat, it is best for those who suffer from extreme pain due to an injury.

Inflammation is lessened
When applied to various health conditions cold therapy can reduce pain and swelling. The cold therapy helps reduce inflammation by reducing blood vessels in muscles, which decreases blood flow. It also decreases pain signal transmission through your brain. There are two types of cold therapy which include homemade ice packs as well as chemical cold packs. Cold therapy should be used only for the recommended duration similar to heat therapy. In the event of prolonged exposure to cold, it can lead to Hives or ice burns.

Both heat and cold therapy have their advantages, however, they can also cause adverse effects. Cold therapy is more effective in treating acute injuries that result from reduced blood flow. The heat therapy improves blood flow, reduces swelling, inflammation and improves circulation. It also has a psychologically relaxing impact on the patient, making it a good choice for chronic pain management. However, cold therapy is not as effective for long-term pain relief.