Pain Management Using Cold and Heat
If used correctly, a combination of hot and cold therapies can offer relief for up to 5 days. This therapy is especially beneficial for injuries from overuse and tears to muscles. Cold therapy reduces the pain and inflammation through dilation of blood vessels. It helps speed up the flow of blood to the area that has been injured. It also helps with chronic joint pain. The best part about both therapies is that they can be combined!
Cold therapy is more efficient than heat therapy in the reduction of inflammation and blood flow to the affected areas. The cold therapy lessens swelling and increases blood flow. The heating therapy increases blood flow and draws in more nutrients. Because of its soothing effects on joints heating therapy is particularly efficient in pain management. Which treatment should you select to ease discomfort? Here are some ideas. Check out our helpful chart. Let’s take a look at how cold and heat therapy interact.
Ice therapy is effective at reducing inflammation and swelling. It also produces an numbing effect that slows down pain signals to the brain. Effective cold therapy methods include ice baths, homemade ice packs, and cold packs made of chemicals. As with the use of heat therapy, you must adhere to the correct protocol and limit the duration of cold exposure. You should not leave the application of ice on your skin for more than 20 minutes as this can lead to burning or hives.
While cold therapy can be effective in helping reduce swelling, it does have certain limitations. This therapy should not be utilized on patients suffering from chronic injuries. Also, cold therapy should not be used on wounds that are open and is not recommended for people with circulatory or neuropathic conditions. Patients who suffer from infections should consult their physician prior to applying this therapy. Cold therapy can be applied on the affected areas only in the early stages of pain.
Doctors recommend that you apply ice to reduce swelling and then heat to ease discomfort. The use of heat increases blood flow and warms up muscles prior to exercising. Cold therapy on the other hand, slows blood flow and reduces swelling and pain. To get the most effective relief, patients should wrap the affected area in a thin towel. For the best results cold therapy should be applied for at minimum 15 minutes at least once a day.
Depending on the type of injury, heat or cold therapy can be the most effective in relieving pain. For acute pain, like the result of a muscle strain it is recommended to use heat as the most effective treatment. Cold therapy is suggested to treat chronic pain, for instance long-term joint pain. However, there is no strict and unchanging rule of thumb on which one is more efficient. Cold therapy is beneficial to many people who suffer from joint pain.
Cryotherapy or cold therapy is used to reduce swelling and inflammation. It reduces tissue damage by preventing nerve activity. Specifically, it numbs muscles that are painful and reduces nerve activity. It reduces inflammation and swelling by decreasing nerve activity. Cold therapy is not recommended for everyone, especially pregnant women and children. Because cold therapy causes the body to respond differently than heat, it is recommended for those who suffer from severe pain from an injury.
Inflammation is reduced
The use of cold therapy can be utilized to treat a variety of health ailments. Cold therapy reduces inflammation by reducing blood vessels in muscles, which reduces blood flow. Cold therapy also reduces pain signal transmission through your brain. There are two kinds of cold therapy which include homemade ice packs as well as chemical cold packs. The use of cold therapy should be only for the duration recommended similar to heat therapy. In the event of prolonged exposure to cold, it can lead to ice burns or hives.
While both heat and cold therapy are beneficial but they have distinct negative effects. Acute injuries are more likely to be treated with cold therapy because of the diminished blood flow. The heat therapy increases blood flow and reduce inflammation and swelling through improving circulation. It also has a calming psychological effect on the sufferer which makes it a great option for pain management in chronic situations. Cold therapy is not as effective in long-term pain management.