Scott Pain Management

Pain Management Using Cold and Heat

If done correctly, a combination hot and cold therapy can provide relief for three to five working days. This therapy is particularly efficient for injuries that have been sustained from overuse or tears to muscles. The cold therapy can also lessen inflammation and pain by dilatation of blood vessels. As a result, it increases the flow of blood to the area that is injured. And it can help with chronic joint pain. The greatest thing about both treatments is that they can be combined!

Reduces inflammation
Cold therapy is more effective than heat therapy in decreasing blood flow and inflammation to the affected areas. The cold therapy helps reduce swelling while heating therapy increases blood flow and pulls in more nutrients. Because of its calming effects on joints it is especially efficient in pain management. Which one of the therapies should you choose to alleviate your pain? Here are some ideas. Check out our helpful chart. Let’s discuss how cold and heat therapy interact.

Ice therapy is efficient in reducing inflammation and swelling. Ice therapy also helps reduce inflammation and swelling. It can also produce a numbing effect that slows down the brain’s pain signals. The most effective cold therapies include ice baths, homemade ice packs, and cold packs made of chemicals. Follow the same guidelines as heat therapy and limit exposure to cold. Don’t leave the ice pack on the skin for longer than 20 minutes because this could cause irritation and hives.

Swelling is lessened
Although cold therapy can help reduce swelling, it has certain limitations. This therapy should not be utilized on those suffering from chronic injuries. Cold therapy should not be applied to open injuries and should not be considered for patients suffering from circulatory or neuropathy issues. Patients suffering from ailments should consult with their physician prior to applying cold therapy. The use of cold therapy should be done only on the areas affected in the early stages of pain.

In general, doctors suggest applying ice first to decrease swelling, and then applying heat to relieve discomfort. Heating therapy improves blood flow and warms muscles prior to activity. Cold therapy, on the other hand, slows down blood flow and reduces swelling. Cover the affected area with a towel to provide the best relief. For better results cold therapy must be applied for at minimum 15 minutes at least once a day.

Reduces pain
It is contingent on the nature and extent of the injury which treatment is more efficient in relieving pain. In general, heat is the best treatment for pain that is acute, such as a muscle strain, and cold therapy is advised for pain that is persistent, like a long-standing joint pain. There isn’t a exact and definite rule for which one is more effective. A majority of people who suffer from joint pain will benefit from cold therapy.

The practice of cold therapy, also known as cryotherapy is used to lessen discomfort caused by inflammation as well as swelling. It reduces the damage to tissues by reducing nerve activity. It specifically numbs muscles that are in pain and reduces nerve activity. It reduces inflammation and swelling by reducing nerve activity. However it isn’t appropriate for some individuals including pregnant women. Because cold therapy causes the body to respond differently than heat, it is best for those who are suffering from extreme pain due to an injury.

Lowers inflammation
Cold therapy is a method to treat a variety of health conditions. It reduces inflammation by reducing the blood vessels of muscles, which reduces the flow of blood. Furthermore, cold therapy decreases pain signal transmission by the brain. Cold therapy techniques include homemade ice packs and chemical cold packs. The use of cold therapy should be only for the recommended duration similar to heat therapy. Exposed to cold for too long could result in ice burns as well as hives.

While both heat and cold therapy have their benefits but they have distinct negative effects. Acute injuries are more likely to be treated using cold therapy because of the diminished blood flow. The heat therapy improves blood flow and reduces inflammation, swelling and improves circulation. It can also provide an emotional calming effect and is a good option for pain management that is ongoing. Cold therapy is not as effective in long-term pain management.