Pain Management Using Cold and Heat
If done correctly when done correctly, a combination of heat and cold therapy can offer relief for three to five working days. This therapy is especially effective for overuse injuries and tears in muscles. The cold therapy helps reduce the pain and inflammation through dilation of blood vessels. As a result, it helps to increase the flow of blood to the injured area. It also helps with chronic joint pain. The greatest thing about both therapies is that they can be combined!
Inflammation is lessened
Cold therapy is more effective than heat therapy in decreasing blood flow and inflammation to the affected areas. The cold therapy lessens swelling and heat therapy increases blood flow and draws in more nutrients. Because of its calming effects on joints it is especially effective in pain management. Which one of the therapies should you choose to ease discomfort? Here are some suggestions. Check out our helpful chart. Let’s examine how heat and cold therapy can work together.
Ice therapy can be effective in reducing inflammation and swelling. It also produces the sensation of numbness and slows down pain signals to the brain. Effective cold therapy methods include ice baths, homemade ice packs, and cold packs made of chemicals. Just like with heat therapy, it is important to adhere to the correct procedure and limit the time of cold exposure. Don’t leave the ice pack on the skin for longer than 20 minutes because this could cause ice burns and hives.
Swelling is reduced
While cold therapy can effectively reduce swelling, it comes with certain limitations. This therapy is not recommended for those suffering from chronic injuries. Cold therapy should not be applied to open wounds and should not be used for patients suffering from circulatory or neuropathy disorders. Furthermore, patients suffering from infections must consult their doctor before using this therapy. Cold therapy should be applied on the affected areas only during the early stages of the 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 warms muscles prior to you begin your exercise. Cold therapy on the other hand reduces blood flow and reduces swelling and pain. Cover the affected area with a towel to provide the best relief. To get the best results cold therapy must be applied for a minimum of 15-20 minutes several times a day.
It’s dependent on the type and extent of the injury which treatment is more effective in alleviating pain. For acute pain, such as muscles strains heating is the best treatment. Cold therapy is recommended to treat chronic pain, for instance long-term joint pain. There isn’t any one right or wrong treatment. Most people who suffer from joint pain will benefit from cold therapy.
Cryotherapy, also known as cold therapy, is used to reduce inflammation and swelling. It slows the damage to tissues by reducing nerve activity. In particular, it numbs the sore muscle tissue and reduces nerve activity. It also reduces swelling and inflammation by decreasing nerve activity. However cold therapy is not suitable for certain people especially pregnant women. Cold therapy is more beneficial for severe pain from injuries, as it causes the body to react differently to heat.
Inflammation is lessened
When used for a variety of health conditions cold therapy can reduce pain and swelling. Cold therapy can reduce inflammation by reducing blood vessels in muscles, which reduces blood flow. In addition, cold therapy can reduce pain signal transmission via the brain. Cold therapy techniques include homemade ice packs as well as chemical cold packs. Like heat therapy, cold therapy should be limited to the recommended time frame. Prolonged cold exposure can cause the development of hives or ice burns.
Both cold and warm therapy have advantages, however, they can also cause adverse effects. Injuries that are severe are more likely to be treated using cold therapy because of the lower blood flow. The heat therapy increases blood flow and reduce swelling and inflammation by improving circulation. It also has a psychologically calming effect on the sufferer making it an ideal choice for pain management that is ongoing. However, cold therapy is not as effective for long-term pain relief.