Pain Management Using Cold and Heat
If used correctly, a combination hot and cold therapy can ease pain for three to five days. This therapy is particularly beneficial for muscle tears and overuse injuries. The cold therapy helps reduce inflammation and pain through dilatation blood vessels. It increases the flow of blood to the area injured. It also helps with chronic joint pain. The great thing about both therapies is that they can be combined!
When compared to heat therapy cold therapy can reduce inflammation and blood flow to the affected area. The cold therapy decreases swelling while heat therapy increases blood flow and draws in more nutrients. Heat therapy is especially effective in pain management because of its calming effects on joints. Which therapy should you choose to alleviate your pain? Here are some tips. Take a look at our helpful chart. Let’s look at how cold and heat therapy interact.
Ice therapy is effective at reducing inflammation and swelling. It also creates a numbing effect and slows down the brain’s signaling for pain. There are numerous effective cold therapy options, including ice baths, homemade cold packs, and chemical cold pack. Similar to heat therapy, you should follow the proper procedure and limit the time of exposure to cold. It is not recommended to leave the ice pack on your skin for more than 20 mins as it could result in burning or hives.
Swelling is decreased
Although cold therapy is a great way to reduce swelling, it has some limitations. This method should not be utilized on those suffering from chronic injuries. Cold therapy should not be applied to open injuries and should not be used for patients suffering from circulatory or neuropathy conditions. Furthermore, patients who suffer from infections should consult their physician prior to applying this therapy. The use of cold therapy should be done only on the areas that are affected in the initial stages of pain.
Doctors recommend that you apply ice to decrease swelling, and then apply heat to ease discomfort. The use of heat increases blood flow and also warms muscles prior activities. Cold therapy, on other hand, decreases blood flow and reduces swelling. Cover the affected area with an apron to provide the most effective relief. The use of cold therapy should be done for at least 15 minutes multiple times per day for the best results.
Depending on the kind of injury, either cold or heat therapy is most effective for alleviating pain. Heat is generally the best option for pain that is acute, such as an injury to the muscles, and cold therapy is advised for pain that is chronic such as chronic joint pain. There isn’t any one 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 inflammation and swelling. It helps reduce tissue damage by blocking nerve activity. It specifically numbs muscles that are painful and reduces nerve activity. It also reduces swelling and inflammation by decreasing nerve activity. However, cold therapy is not appropriate for everyone, especially children and pregnant women. Cold therapy is more beneficial for those suffering from severe injuries, as it causes the body to respond differently to heat.
When used for a variety of health conditions cold therapy can reduce swelling and pain. Cold therapy decreases inflammation by reducing blood vessels in muscles, which decreases blood flow. Cold therapy also reduces pain signal transmission by your brain. Methods for cold therapy include homemade ice packs as well as chemical cold packs. The use of cold therapy should be only for the time period recommended, just like heat therapy. In the event of prolonged exposure to cold, it can lead to the development of hives or ice burns.
Although both cold and heat therapy have their benefits but they have distinct side effects. Injuries that are acute are more likely to be treated with cold therapy because of the diminished blood flow. Heat therapy helps increase blood flow and reduces inflammation and swelling by improving circulation. It also has a psychological calming effect on those suffering, making it a great choice for pain management that is ongoing. Cold therapy isn’t as effective in long-term pain management.