Dr Dykes Pain Management

Pain Management Using Cold and Heat

If done correctly when done correctly, a combination of heat and cold therapy can offer relief for three to five days. This therapy is particularly effective for muscle tears and overuse injuries. It also reduces inflammation and pain through dilation of blood vessels. As a result, it promotes a faster blood flow to the area that is injured. It also helps with chronic joint pain. The most beneficial thing is that both types of therapy can be used in conjunction!

Reduces inflammation
As opposed to heat therapy cold therapy reduces inflammation and blood flow to the affected area. The cold therapy reduces swelling, while the heating therapy increases blood flow and draws in more nutrients. Heating therapy is especially beneficial in pain relief due to its soothing effects on joints. What therapy should you pick to ease your discomfort? Here are some suggestions. Take a look at our chart for help. Let’s take a look at how heat and cold therapy interact.

Ice therapy can be very efficient in reducing inflammation and swelling. It also has an numbing effect, which slows down the brain’s signals for pain. The most effective cold therapies include ice baths homemade ice packs and chemical cold packs. You should follow the same guidelines as heat therapy and limit exposure to cold. Don’t leave the ice pack on your skin for more than 20 mins because this could cause burns and hives.

Reduces swelling
While cold therapy can be effective in helping reduce swelling, it has certain limitations. This therapy should not be utilized on patients with chronic injuries. Additionally, cold therapy should not be used on wounds that are open and is not recommended for individuals suffering from neuropathic and circulatory disorders. Patients suffering from infections should consult their physician prior applying this treatment. Cold therapy can be applied to the affected areas only in the initial stages of the pain.

In general, doctors recommend applying ice to reduce swelling, then applying heat to relieve discomfort. The heat therapy improves blood flow and warms muscles prior to you begin your exercise. Cold therapy on the other hand slows blood flow and decreases swelling and pain. To get the most effective relief, patients should cover the affected area with a thin towel. It is recommended to use cold therapy for at least 15 minutes at a time to obtain the best results.

Reduces pain
Depending on the nature of injury, cold or hot therapy is most effective for relieving pain. For acute pain, like an injury to a muscle it is recommended to use heat as the most effective treatment. Cold therapy is recommended for chronic pain, like long-term joint pain. There is no solution that is right or wrong. A majority of people who suffer from joint pain can benefit from cold therapy.

Cryotherapy, or cold therapy, is used to reduce the pain caused by inflammation and swelling. It helps reduce the damage to tissues by blocking nerve activity. Particularly, it numbs muscles that are painful and reduces nerve activity. It reduces swelling and inflammation by decreasing nerve activity. Cold therapy is not recommended for everyone, especially pregnant women and children. Because cold therapy causes the body to react differently than heat, it is recommended for those suffering from severe pain from an injury.

Inflammation is reduced
Cold therapy is a method to treat various health ailments. It reduces inflammation by reducing the blood vessels of muscles, which slows down the flow of blood. In addition, cold therapy can reduce pain signal transmission via the brain. There are two types of cold therapy that can be used: homemade ice packs or chemical cold packs. The use of cold therapy should be only for the recommended time as with heat therapy. A prolonged exposure to cold may cause ice burns or hives.

Although both cold and therapy have benefits however, they have distinct side effects. Acute injuries are more likely to be treated with cold therapy due to the lower blood flow. The heat therapy increases blood flow and reduces inflammation and swelling through improving circulation. It also has an emotional calming effect which makes it a great option for pain management that is ongoing. However, cold therapy is not as effective for long-term pain management.