Pain Management Using Cold and Heat
If properly used when done correctly, a combination of heat and cold therapy can offer relief for up to five working days. This therapy is particularly effective for overuse injuries and muscle tears. The cold therapy helps reduce inflammation and pain through dilatation blood vessels. It promotes faster blood flow to the area that has been injured. It also helps with chronic joint pain. The best thing about both therapies is that they can be combined!
Inflammation is lessened
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 boosts blood flow and draws in more nutrients. Because of its soothing effects on joints heating therapy is particularly effective in managing pain. Which therapy should you choose to ease pain? Here are some suggestions. Make sure to read our helpful chart. Let’s examine how heat and cold therapy interact.
Ice therapy can be very efficient in reducing inflammation and swelling. It also has an numbing effect, which slows down pain signals to the brain. There are a variety of effective cold therapy optionsavailable, including ice baths, homemade cold packs, and chemical cold packs. It is recommended to follow the same protocol as heat therapy and limit exposure to cold. It is not recommended to leave the cold pack on your skin for more than 20 minutes since this could lead to burning or hives.
While cold therapy can effectively reduce swelling, it does have certain limitations. Patients who suffer from chronic injuries should not be using this method. Additionally cold therapy should not be applied on wounds that are open and is not recommended for those suffering from neuropathic or circulatory conditions. Additionally, those who suffer from infections should consult their physician prior using this therapy. Cold therapy should be utilized only on the areas that are affected in the beginning stages of pain.
In general, doctors suggest applying ice first to reduce swelling, then applying heat to ease pain. The use of heat increases blood flow and also warms muscles prior to exercise. Cold therapy, on other hand, slows down blood flow and reduces swelling. Wrap the affected area with towels to provide the most effective relief. For the best results, cold therapy should be used for at least 15 minutes a day.
Depending on the nature of injury, either cold or heat therapy is most effective for decreasing pain. It is usually the best solution for pain that is acute, such as an injury to the muscle, while cold therapy is recommended for pain that is chronic such as a prolonged joint pain. There isn’t a exact and definite rule for which one is more efficient. The majority of people suffering from joint pain can benefit from cold therapy.
Cold therapy, or cryotherapy is used to decrease the pain caused by inflammation and swelling. It helps to reduce the damage to tissues by inhibiting nerve activity. It numbs muscles and reduces nerve activity. It also reduces swelling and inflammation by decreasing nerve activity. However, cold therapy is not suitable for all people particularly pregnant women. Because cold therapy causes the body to respond differently to heat, it is best for those who are suffering from severe pain from an injury.
If used to treat various health issues, cold therapy can help reduce pain and swelling. Cold therapy reduces inflammation by reducing blood vessels in muscles, which reduces blood flow. Additionally, cold therapy reduces pain signal transmission through the brain. Methods for cold therapy include homemade ice packs and chemical cold packs. The use of cold therapy should be only for the recommended time similar to heat therapy. A prolonged exposure to cold may cause ice burns or hives.
Both cold and heat therapy have their advantages, however, they can also cause negative side effects. Acute injuries are more likely to be treated with cold therapy due to the lower blood flow. The heat therapy improves blood flow and reduces inflammation, swelling, and improves circulation. It also has a psychological calming effect making it a suitable option to manage chronic pain. However, cold therapy is not as effective for long-term pain management.