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When to Use Cold Therapies for Pain and Discomfort

Updated: Aug 4, 2023



Feeling aches and soreness from an injury or arthritis? Chronic and acute pain is often difficult to deal with and hard to get rid of. One modality used for pain relief is warm and cold therapies such as the patches that many people use. However, with two different temperature extremes, when is the correct time to use either?


Cold therapies such as icing an injury is used when tissue is inflamed. You can discern inflammation by seeing the area redder than the surrounding areas, swelling, and the affected area warmer than the rest of the body. Inflammation is the body's natural response to heal injury; however, sometimes this natural response can kick into overdrive causing us discomfort. Often this response can be seen minutes after an injury. Icing or cold therapy can help alleviate the symptoms we feel from inflammatory responses. Reducing heat and actively cooling the problem area can decrease the metabolism in that area, allowing for reduced pain.


When icing an injury, it is important to note that the effects are usually temporary. Often, one can obtain pain relief and feel better but with the injury still there and unaddressed, the inflammation is likely to return. It is important to address the injury. Stem cell therapy is a non-invasive way to address acute and chronic injuries by promoting the body to heal itself. In our next article we will discuss when to use heat therapy to alleviate pain.


Our family at Hero Medical Center wishes you and your loved ones good health during the holiday season. If you are interested in learning more about stem cells and how they can help you or a family member, sign up for a seminar and browse other articles on our website!



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