Dr Gerry Smith Pain Management

Pain Management Using Cold and Heat

When properly used when used correctly, a combination of hot and cold therapies can offer relief for up to 5 days. This therapy is especially beneficial for injuries from overuse and muscle tears. It also reduces inflammation and pain by dilatation of blood vessels. In turn, it stimulates a greater flow of blood to the area that is injured. And it can help with joint pain that is chronic. The most appealing thing is that both types of therapy can be used in conjunction!

Inflammation is lessened
Compared to heat therapy, cold therapy reduces inflammation and blood flow to the affected area. The cold therapy helps reduce swelling and inflammation, while the heating therapy increases blood flow and draws in more nutrients. Because of its soothing effects on joints the heat therapy is especially effective in pain management. Which one of the therapies should you choose to ease your pain? Here are some suggestions. And, make sure to check out our helpful chart. Let’s examine how cold and heat therapy interact.

Ice therapy is effective in reducing inflammation and swelling. Ice therapy can also reduce swelling and inflammation. It can also trigger an numbing effect that can slow down the brain’s pain signals. The most effective cold therapies include ice baths homemade ice packs and chemical cold packs. Just like with heat therapy, it is important to adhere to the right protocol and limit the duration of cold exposure. You should not leave the application of ice on your skin for more than 20 minutes since this could lead to burning or hives.

Swelling is decreased
Although cold therapy can reduce swelling, there are certain limitations. This method should not be utilized on patients suffering from chronic injuries. Cold therapy should not be used on open wounds and should not be considered for those suffering from circulatory neuropathy-related conditions. Patients suffering from infections should consult with their physician prior to applying this therapy. Cold therapy should be utilized only on the areas that are affected at the beginning of pain.

In general, doctors suggest applying ice first to reduce swelling, and then applying heat to relieve discomfort. Heat therapy increases blood flow and helps warm muscles before you start your activity. Cold therapy, on the other hand can slow blood flow and reduces swelling and pain. Cover the affected area with towels to provide the best relief. To get the best results cold therapy should be applied for at minimum 15 minutes at least once a day.

Reduces pain
Depending on the nature of injury, cold or hot therapy is the most effective way of reducing pain. The most effective method is heat. option for pain that is acute, like a muscle strain, and cold therapy is advised for pain that is persistent or has been causing joint pain. There isn’t a single correct or incorrect treatment. Cold therapy is beneficial for most people suffering from joint pain.

Cryotherapy, or cold therapy, is used to reduce discomfort caused by inflammation as well as swelling. 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 is not appropriate for some individuals particularly pregnant women. Cold therapy is a better option for injuries that cause severe pain, as it causes the body to respond differently to heat.

Lowers inflammation
When applied to a variety of health conditions, cold therapy can help reduce swelling and pain. It reduces inflammation by constricting blood vessels of muscles, which reduces the flow of blood. Also, cold therapy reduces pain signal transmission by your brain. There are two kinds of cold therapy that can be used: homemade ice packs or chemical cold packs. Cold therapy should be used only for the time period recommended similar to heat therapy. Long-term exposure to cold can result in ice burns or hives.

While both cold and heat therapy have advantages, they have different negative effects. Injuries that are severe are more likely to be treated using cold therapy because of the diminished blood flow. The warmth therapy increases blood flow and reduces inflammation, swelling and improves circulation. It also has a calming psychological effect on the sufferer, which makes it a great option for pain management that is ongoing. However cold therapy isn’t as effective for long-term pain relief.