Dr Shariff Calgary Pain Management

Pain Management Using Cold and Heat

When used appropriately, a combination of hot and cold therapies can provide relief for up to five days. This therapy is especially efficient for injuries that have been sustained from overuse or tears to muscles. Cold therapy also reduces the pain and inflammation by dilation of blood vessels. It promotes faster blood flow to the area that has been injured. Additionally, it can ease joint pain that is chronic. The greatest thing about both therapies is that they can be combined!

Reduces inflammation
Cold therapy is more efficient than heat therapy in decreasing blood flow and inflammation to the affected areas. The cold therapy helps reduce swelling, while the heat therapy boosts blood flow and pulls in more nutrients. Because of its calming effects on joints, heat therapy is particularly efficient in managing pain. Which therapy should you choose to relieve your pain? Here are some ideas. Take a look at our helpful chart. Let’s look at how heat and cold therapy interact.

Ice therapy is efficient in decreasing swelling and inflammation. It also produces the sensation of numbness and reduces the brain’s signaling for pain. There are a variety of effective cold therapy options, including cold baths, homemade packs, and a chemical cold pack. As with heat therapy, it is important to adhere to the appropriate protocol and limit the duration of exposure to cold. It is not recommended to leave the ice pack on your skin for more than 20 mins since this could lead to ice burns or hives.

Reduces swelling
Although cold therapy can reduce swelling, there are some limitations. This therapy should not be used on those suffering from chronic injuries. In addition cold therapy should not be applied on wounds that are open and is not recommended for people suffering from neuropathic and circulatory disorders. Additionally, those suffering from infections should consult with their physician prior to applying this treatment. Cold therapy should be utilized only on the areas affected at the beginning of pain.

In general, doctors suggest applying ice at first to reduce swelling, then applying 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. Wrap the affected area with a towel to give the most effective relief. Cold therapy should be used for at least 15 minutes, alternating between each day to achieve the best results.

Reduces pain
It’s based on the type and degree of the injury, which treatment is more effective in relieving pain. Heat is generally the best option for pain that is acute, like a muscle sprain, and cold therapy is recommended for chronic pain, like a long-standing joint pain. However, there is no definitive and absolute rule of thumb for which is more efficient. Many people suffering from joint pain can benefit from cold therapy.

Cryotherapy, also known as cold therapy, is used to reduce inflammation and swelling. It reduces the damage to tissues by reducing nerve activity. It numbs muscles and reduces nerve activity. It decreases swelling and inflammation by decreasing nerve activity. However cold therapy is not suitable for all people particularly pregnant women. It is recommended to use cold therapy to treat injuries that cause extreme pain, as it causes the body to respond differently to heat.

Inflammation is reduced
When applied to various health conditions, cold therapy can help reduce pain and swelling. Cold therapy decreases inflammation by constricting blood vessels in muscles, which decreases blood flow. Furthermore, cold therapy decreases the transmission of pain signals by the brain. There are two kinds of cold therapy which include homemade ice packs as well as chemical cold packs. The use of cold therapy should be only for the recommended time, just like heat therapy. Exposure to cold for too long can result in ice burns and hives.

Although both cold and therapy have benefits however, they have distinct adverse effects. Injuries that are acute are more likely to be treated using cold therapy because of the lower blood flow. The heat therapy increases blood flow and reduces inflammation and swelling by improving circulation. It can also provide a psychological calming effect, making it a good option for pain management that is ongoing. However cold therapy isn’t as efficient for long-term pain control.