Dr Brian Gwartz Pain Management

Pain Management Using Cold and Heat

If used correctly, a combination hot and cold therapy can offer relief for three to five days. This therapy is particularly efficient for injuries that have been sustained from overuse or tears in muscles. Cold therapy also reduces the pain and inflammation by dilation of blood vessels. As a result, it promotes a faster blood flow to the injured area. It can also assist with chronic joint pain. The great thing about both therapies is that they can be combined!

Reduces inflammation
Compared to heat therapy, cold therapy can reduce inflammation and blood flow to the affected region. The cold therapy decreases swelling while heating therapy increases blood flow and draws in more nutrients. Heating therapy is especially efficient in pain management because of its calming effects on joints. But what method should you select to ease your discomfort? Here are some suggestions. Also, be sure you check out our chart of helpful information. Let’s examine how heat and cold therapy interact.

Ice therapy is efficient in reducing inflammation and swelling. It can also reduce swelling and inflammation. It also can cause an numbing effect, which slows down the brain’s pain signals. There are many effective cold therapy optionsavailable, including cold baths, homemade cold packs, and chemical cold pack. It is recommended to follow the same procedures as heat therapy and limit cold exposure. Don’t leave the ice pack on your skin for more than 20 mins because this could cause ice burns and hives.

Swelling is reduced
While cold therapy can be effective in helping reduce swelling, it comes with certain limitations. This treatment should not be used on patients suffering from chronic injuries. Cold therapy should not be applied to open injuries and should not be suggested for those with circulatory or neuropathy issues. Moreover, patients suffering from infections should consult with their physician prior to using this therapy. Cold therapy should be applied only on the areas affected in the initial stages of pain.

Doctors suggest that you first apply ice to decrease swelling and then apply heat to relieve pain. The use of heat increases blood flow and warms muscles prior to activity. Cold therapy, on other hand, reduces blood flow and reduces swelling. For the most effective relief, patients should wrap the affected area with a soft towel. For the best results cold therapy must be applied for at minimum 15 minutes at least once a day.

Reduces pain
Depending on the nature of injury, heat or cold therapy is the most effective way of reducing pain. For acute pain, like muscles strains it is recommended to use heat as the most effective treatment. Cold therapy is recommended to treat chronic pain, for instance long-term joint pain. There isn’t a strict and unchanging rule of thumb on which one is more effective. Most people who suffer from joint pain can benefit from cold therapy.

Cryotherapy or cold therapy is used to reduce inflammation and swelling. It reduces the damage to tissues by blocking nerve activity. In particular, it numbs the muscles that are injured and decreases nerve activity. It also reduces swelling and inflammation by reducing nerve activity. However, cold therapy is not suitable for all people including pregnant women. Because cold therapy causes the body to react differently to heat, it is recommended for those who are suffering from intense pain from an injury.

Lowers inflammation
When used for many health conditions cold therapy can reduce swelling and pain. The cold therapy helps reduce inflammation by reducing blood vessels in muscles, which reduces blood flow. It also decreases the transmission of pain signals by your brain. Cold therapy techniques include homemade ice packs and chemical cold packs. Like heat therapy cold therapy should be limited to the recommended time frame. In the event of prolonged exposure to cold, it can lead to Hives or ice burns.

While both cold and heat therapy have advantages but they have distinct negative effects. Injuries that are severe are more likely to be treated with cold therapy due to the lower blood flow. The heat therapy improves blood flow, reduces swelling, inflammation, and improves circulation. It also has a psychologically calming impact on the patient, making it an ideal choice for chronic pain management. Cold therapy isn’t as effective for long-term pain management.