Imagine the last time that you had some really bad muscle pain or when you had a flare-up of some chronic pain. You might have been (and still might be) confused about whether you should use heat therapy or cold therapy to reduce the pain. The truth is both therapies have their benefits, but it’s best to use them together! Alternating hot & cold therapy is a pretty simple and completely affordable way to get lessen the muscle pain you might be feeling and any discomfort you might be experiencing.
Here are the basics of what both heat and cold therapy do to your body. Ice or cold therapy works by quickly narrowing your blood vessels and contracting your muscles. When that happens, you will find inflammation decreases dramatically, swelling is reduced and you will feel less pain.
Hot therapy, on the other hand, works by increasing the flow of blood in the affected area, which promotes fast healing, improves your muscle pain and increases flexibility.
These are the exact reasons why alternating hot & cold therapy should be used, rather than just one or the other. Bringing all of these benefits together is going to bring you immense pain relief!
The best way to do this is with a hot & cold therapy gel ice pack (you can easily do this with a DIY at home, too). You can either heat up or cool down this pack, which is going to retain its temperature for long periods of time. It’s best to start with a warm pack, so heat up your pack in the microwave for the designated length of time. Keep the warmth on for about 10 minutes and then you can switch to a cold pack for another 10 minutes. Keep this alternation going for as long as it takes to feel some relief from your pain.
Hot/Cold Therapy is the way to go for pain relief.
Alternating hot & cold therapy is going to help out with your muscle and joint pain and help to relieve pain and soreness. Follow some of the tips and guidelines outlined above and you’re sure to feel better in no time!