Dr Sondes Pain Management

Pain Management Using Cold and Heat

If properly used when done correctly, a combination of heat and cold therapy can offer relief for three to five working days. This therapy is particularly efficient for muscle tears and injuries sustained from overuse. Also, it reduces inflammation and pain by dilation of blood vessels. In turn, it stimulates a greater flow of blood to the area that is injured. It also helps with joint pain that is chronic. The most appealing thing is that both forms of therapy can be combined!

Reduces inflammation
Cold therapy is more efficient than heat therapy in decreasing inflammation and blood flow to the affected areas. The cold therapy lessens swelling and inflammation, while the heating therapy increases blood flow and draws in more nutrients. Because of its calming effects on joints the heat therapy is especially effective in pain management. Which one of the therapies should you choose to ease discomfort? Here are some ideas. Make sure to read our chart of helpful information. Let’s explore how heat and cold therapy work together.

Ice therapy is effective in reducing inflammation as well as swelling. Ice therapy can also reduce inflammation and swelling. It can also produce an numbing effect, which slows down the brain’s pain signals. Effective cold therapy methods include ice baths, homemade ice packs, and chemical cold packs. 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 as this can cause the skin to burn and cause hives.

Reduces swelling
Although cold therapy can reduce swelling, it has some limitations. It should not be utilized on patients suffering from chronic injuries. Also, cold therapy should not be applied on open wounds and is not recommended for individuals who suffer from neuropathic or circulatory issues. Patients with illnesses should consult their physician before applying cold therapy. Cold therapy should be applied to the affected areas only in the early stages of the pain.

In general, doctors suggest applying ice at first to reduce swelling, and then applying heat to ease discomfort. The heat therapy improves blood flow and warms muscles before you start your activity. Cold therapy, on the other hand, decreases blood flow and reduces swelling. For the most effective relief, patients should wrap the affected area with a light towel. The cold therapy should be utilized for at least 15-20 minutes several times per day for the best results.

Reduces pain
Depending on the nature of injury, cold or hot therapy is most effective for relieving pain. In general, heat is the best treatment for pain that is acute, like an injury to the muscles, and cold therapy is advised for chronic pain such as chronic joint pain. There isn’t any definitive and absolute rule of thumb for which one is more effective. The majority of people suffering from joint pain can benefit from cold therapy.

Cryotherapy, also known as cold therapy, is used to decrease swelling and inflammation. It helps reduce the damage to tissues by blocking nerve activity. Specifically, it numbs muscles that are injured and decreases nerve activity. It also reduces swelling and inflammation by decreasing nerve activity. However cold therapy isn’t appropriate for everyone, especially children and pregnant women. Cold therapy is more beneficial for severe pain from injuries because it causes the body to react differently to heat.

Inflammation is lessened
The use of cold therapy can be utilized to treat a range of health ailments. It lowers inflammation by reducing the blood vessels in muscles, which decreases the flow of blood. Moreover, cold therapy lowers pain signal transmission via the brain. Methods for cold therapy include homemade ice packs and chemical cold packs. The use of cold therapy should be only for the duration recommended like heat therapy. If exposed to cold for too long could result in ice burns and the development of hives.

Although both cold and heat therapy have their benefits However, they come with different adverse effects. Injuries that are acute are more likely to be treated with cold therapy because of the decreased blood flow. Heating therapy increases blood flow and reduces inflammation, swelling, and improves circulation. It also has a psychological calming effect on the sufferer, making it a good choice to manage chronic pain. Cold therapy isn’t as effective for long-term pain management.