Hot vs. Cold Therapy
Sprained an ankle but don’t know what to do? Or maybe you’ve been feeling the same dull ache behind your neck for weeks and just want a quick remedy. If so, Guardian’s Hot and Cold Pads might be just what you need!
Heat and cold therapies are actually considered two of the most common forms of non-invasive pain-relief therapies and they can usually be administered with little to no effort in the comfort of your own home! And with Guardian’s 2-in-1 pad, you’ll have easy access to both!
But when should you actually use it?
Known as thermotherapy, heat therapy is usually used for chronic pains that are more than a day old, though a 48-hour gap is usually recommended. Thermotherapy is particularly useful on recurring muscle aches and stiffness in joints. This is because heat is considered relaxing, thus helping soothe overworked muscles and relax spasms by stimulating blood flow. So, if your body starts to ache the day after a good workout or a game of badminton, heat therapy works best.
Heat helps to open up blood vessels to speed up the recovery process. The warmth also helps decrease muscle spasms while increasing your range of motion and flexibility as tight muscles, and your tendons and ligaments become more relaxed.
Heat Therapy Dos & Don’ts
|Wait at least 48 hours after injury||Use on fresh wounds|
|Wrap hot device in a thin towel||Apply on swelling|
|Use cold first, then heat if there is swelling||Apply heat for longer than 20 minutes, unless professionally recommended|
|Use if you have poor circulation or diabetes|
|Use on open wounds or stitches|
|Sleep with a heating pad|
For acute pain and fresh injuries, cold therapy is an absolute lifesaver. Also called cryotherapy, the cold helps relieve pain by numbing affected areas that have become inflamed.
When injuries like a sprain or cut occurs, damaged tissues naturally react by swelling. This swelling causes the compression of nearby tissues, thereby causing pain and discomfort. An immediate sharp pain after any form of exercise usually indicates an injury. In this event, apply cold therapy immediately to stop the injury from getting worse.
The cold helps blood vessels constrict, thus slowing down the circulation of blood flow in the affected area. This helps reduce fluid build-up, helping to control the painful effects of inflammation and swelling. It is important to note however that cold therapy merely helps to relieve pain but does not necessarily treat the underlying cause, and so professional advice and medical treatment should still be undertaken when needed.
Cold Therapy Dos & Don’ts
|Used in intervals over 24-48 hours after injury||Apply cold for more than 20 minutes at a time|
|Wrap cold device in a thin towel||Use on muscle aches and spasms|
|Use on INJURED muscles||Use if you have poor circulation or diabetes|
|Use on open wounds or stitches|
In general, heat is used mostly on muscles and for reoccurring pains, preferably those occurring after 6 weeks of an injury or just sore overworked muscles. Cold therapy focuses more on the immediate effects of injuries and the pain caused by inflammation and swelling.
The Guardian Hot and Cold Pad is a reusable non-toxic gel pack that can stay hot or cold for up to 2 hours, so it can be used either way as needed! It’s just what the doctor ordered for all your pain-relief needs!