Dr Oh Pain Management

Pain Management Using Cold and Heat

If done correctly the combination of hot and cold therapy can provide relief for three to five days. This therapy is particularly efficient for muscle tears and injuries from overuse. The cold therapy helps reduce the pain and inflammation through dilation of blood vessels. This increases the flow of blood to the injured area. It also helps with joint pain that is chronic. The great thing about both treatments is that they can be combined!

Reduces inflammation
As opposed to heat therapy cold therapy can reduce inflammation and blood flow to the affected region. The cold therapy decreases swelling, while the warmth therapy increases blood flow and draws in more nutrients. Heat therapy is especially effective in pain management due to its soothing effects on joints. But which treatment should you choose to ease your pain? Here are some suggestions. Take a look at our helpful chart. Let’s look at how cold and heat therapy interact.

Ice therapy can be extremely effective in reducing inflammation as well as swelling. Ice therapy can also reduce swelling and inflammation. It can also create an numbing effect, which slows down the brain’s pain signals. The most effective cold therapy techniques include ice baths, homemade ice packs, and chemical cold packs. You should follow the same guidelines as heat therapy and limit exposure to cold. Do not leave the ice pack on the skin for more than 20 minutes as this can result in ice burns and hives.

Swelling is lessened
While cold therapy can effectively reduce swelling, it does have certain limitations. Patients with chronic injuries should not utilize this treatment. In addition, cold therapy should not be used on wounds that are open and is not recommended for those who suffer from neuropathic or circulatory issues. Patients who suffer from infections should consult with their physician prior to using this therapy. Cold therapy should be applied only on the affected areas in the early stages of pain.

Doctors suggest that you apply ice to help reduce swelling and then apply heat to relieve discomfort. The heat therapy increases blood flow and also warms muscles prior to exercising. Cold therapy, on the other side, reduces blood flow and reduces swelling. Cover the affected area with a towel to give the most effective relief. The cold therapy should be utilized for at least 15 minutes multiple times per day for the best results.

Reduces pain
It’s dependent on the type and severity of the injury which treatment is more efficient in relieving pain. Heat is generally the best option for pain that is acute, like a muscle strain, and cold therapy is advised when pain is chronic or has been causing joint pain. There is no right or wrong treatment. The majority of people suffering from joint pain may benefit from cold therapy.

Cryotherapy, also known as cold therapy is used to decrease discomfort caused by inflammation as well as swelling. It reduces the damage to tissues by reducing nerve activity. Particularly, it numbs muscles that are painful and reduces nerve activity. It also reduces inflammation and swelling by reducing nerve activity. It is not suitable for everyone, particularly pregnant women and children. Because cold therapy causes the body to react differently to heat, it is recommended for people who are experiencing severe pain from an injury.

Lowers inflammation
When it is used for many health conditions cold therapy can reduce pain and swelling. It lowers inflammation by reducing the blood vessels in muscles, which decreases the flow of blood. Moreover, cold therapy lowers the transmission of pain signals by the brain. Cold therapy methods include homemade ice packs and chemical cold packs. As with heat therapy, cold therapy should be limited to the recommended time frame. Long-term exposure to cold can result in Hives or ice burns.

Although both cold and heat therapy are beneficial however, they have distinct side effects. Cold therapy is more effective for injuries that are acute caused by decreased blood flow. Heating therapy can increase blood flow and reduces inflammation and swelling through improving circulation. It also has psychological calming effects which makes it a great option to manage chronic pain. Cold therapy is not as effective for long-term pain management.