New England Pain Management Center

Pain Management Using Cold and Heat

When used appropriately When used properly, a combination and cold therapies can offer relief for three to five days. This therapy is particularly effective for muscle tears and injuries from overuse. Cold therapy decreases pain and inflammation by dilatation blood vessels. It improves blood flow to the area that has been injured. It also helps with chronic joint pain. The best part is that both kinds of therapy can be used in conjunction!

Inflammation is reduced
In comparison to heat therapy, cold therapy reduces inflammation and blood flow to the affected region. The cold therapy decreases swelling while heating therapy increases blood flow and pulls in more nutrients. Because of its soothing effects on joints, heat therapy is particularly efficient in pain management. Which method should you select for your pain? Here are some suggestions. Take a look at our chart for help. Let’s examine how cold and heat therapy interact.

Ice therapy can be extremely efficient in decreasing swelling and inflammation. It also creates a numbing effect and reduces the brain’s signals for pain. There are many effective cold therapies available, such as cold baths, homemade packs, and chemical cold pack. You should follow the same procedure as heat therapy and limit cold exposure. You should not leave the cold pack on your skin for more than 20 mins because this could cause the development of hives or ice burns.

Swelling is reduced
Although cold therapy can reduce swelling, there are some limitations. Patients with chronic injuries should avoid this method. Additionally cold therapy should not be applied on open wounds and is not recommended for individuals with circulatory or neuropathic conditions. Additionally, those who suffer from infections should consult their physician prior applying this therapy. Cold therapy should be used only on the areas affected in the beginning stages of pain.

In general, doctors suggest applying ice first to decrease swelling, and then applying heat to ease pain. The heat therapy improves blood flow and helps warm muscles before you can begin your activity. Cold therapy, on the other hand, slows down blood flow and reduces swelling. To get the most effective relief, patients should cover the affected area with a thin towel. For better results cold therapy should be used for at least 15-20 minutes several times per day.

Reduces pain
It’s based on the type and severity of the injury which treatment is more efficient in alleviating pain. For acute pain, such as an injury to a muscle and strain, heat therapy is the most effective treatment. Cold therapy is suggested for chronic pain, like long-term joint pain. There is no solution that is right or wrong. Cold therapy is beneficial to many people who suffer from joint pain.

Cryotherapy or cold therapy is used to reduce swelling and inflammation. It slows the deterioration of tissues by reducing nerve activity. It numbs muscles and decreases nerve activity. It also reduces swelling and inflammation by reducing nerve activity. However, cold therapy is not suitable for certain people particularly pregnant women. Cold therapy is more beneficial to treat injuries that cause extreme pain, as it causes the body to respond differently to heat.

Lowers inflammation
If used to treat many health conditions cold therapy can reduce pain and swelling. Cold therapy decreases inflammation by reducing blood vessels in muscles, thereby reducing blood flow. It also decreases the transmission of pain signals by your brain. Methods for cold therapy include homemade ice packs and chemical cold packs. Like heat therapy, cold therapy should be restricted to the recommended duration. A prolonged exposure to cold may cause ice burns or hives.

While both cold and heat therapy are beneficial but they have distinct negative effects. Injuries that are acute are more likely to be treated using cold therapy because of the decreased blood flow. Heating 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 chronic pain management. However cold therapy isn’t as efficient for long-term pain control.