Providence Hospital Pain Management

Pain Management Using Cold and Heat

If used correctly when done correctly, a combination of heat and cold therapy may provide relief for three to five working days. This therapy is particularly efficient for muscle tears and injuries from overuse. Cold therapy also reduces inflammation and pain through dilation of blood vessels. In turn, it helps to increase the flow of blood to the area that is injured. It can also help with chronic joint pain. The greatest thing is that both kinds of therapy can be used together!

Inflammation is lessened
When compared to heat therapy cold therapy reduces inflammation and blood flow to the affected area. The cold therapy lessens swelling while heat therapy increases blood flow and pulls in more nutrients. Heat therapy is especially beneficial in pain relief because of its soothing effects on joints. But what method should you select to ease your pain? Here are some helpful suggestions. Take a look at our chart for help. Let’s examine how heat and cold therapy can work together.

Ice therapy can be very effective at decreasing swelling and inflammation. It can also reduce inflammation and swelling. It can also create the sensation of numbness that slows down the brain’s pain signals. The most effective cold therapies include ice baths homemade ice packs and chemical cold packs. Just like with heat therapy, you should follow the proper procedure and limit the time of cold exposure. You should not leave the frozen skin for more than 20 mins because this could cause ice burns or hives.

Swelling is lessened
While cold therapy can effectively reduce swelling, it comes with certain limitations. This method should not be utilized on patients with chronic injuries. Cold therapy should not be used on open wounds and should not be used for patients suffering from circulatory or neuropathy disorders. Additionally, those suffering from infections should consult their doctor before applying this treatment. Cold therapy should also be applied to the affected areas only in the initial stages of the pain.

Doctors suggest that you first apply ice to decrease swelling, and then apply heat to relieve pain. Heating therapy increases blood flow and helps warm muscles before you can start your workout. Cold therapy however slows blood flow and reduces swelling and pain. For the most effective relief, patients should cover the affected area with a light towel. For best results cold therapy must be applied for at least 15 minutes a day.

Reduces pain
Depending on the kind of injury, cold or hot therapy can be the most effective in decreasing pain. It is usually the best alternative for pain that’s acute, like an injury to the muscles, and cold therapy is advised for pain that is chronic or has been causing joint pain. There isn’t a single solution that is right or wrong. Cold therapy is beneficial to the majority of people suffering from joint pain.

Cryotherapy or cold therapy is used to decrease swelling and inflammation. It helps to reduce the damage to tissues by reducing nerve activity. In particular, it numbs the sore muscle tissue and reduces nerve activity. It decreases swelling and inflammation by decreasing nerve activity. However it isn’t appropriate for some individuals including pregnant women. It is recommended to use cold therapy for severe pain from injuries because it causes the body to respond differently to heat.

Inflammation is lessened
Cold therapy can be used to treat various health ailments. It lowers inflammation by constricting blood vessels of muscles, which decreases the flow of blood. In addition, cold therapy can reduce pain signal transmission via the brain. Cold therapy methods include homemade ice packs and chemical cold packs. Cold therapy should be used only for the time period recommended like heat therapy. Exposure to cold for too long could cause ice burns or the development of hives.

Both cold and heat therapy have their advantages, but they also have adverse effects. Acute injuries are more likely to be treated using cold therapy due to the lower blood flow. Heat therapy helps increase blood flow and reduces inflammation and swelling through improving circulation. It also has a psychological calming effect which makes it a great option to manage chronic pain. Cold therapy is not as effective in long-term pain management.