Cold therapy is the preferred therapy for treating sports injuries. Cold therapy, also referred to as cryotherapy, is the treatment of an injured body part with temperatures that are colder than usual. The use of cryotherapy treatment for sports injuries will depend on the type of injury and the type of application treatment used by the therapist or chiropractor
Cryotherapy Treatment for Sports Injuries Is a Popular Form of Treatment
Average individuals as well as health professionals perform cold therapy treatment on injuries. When you injure yourself running or walking, the first thing a person may do is apply an ice pack to the injured area. The reason this is effective is because the coldness of the ice helps to reduce or prevent the area from swelling. It is typical to see an improvement in injuries once cryotherapy treatment for sports injuries has been applied for at least 15 minutes.
How Does Cold Therapy Work?
Cryotherapy works by decreasing how fast fluid flows into the muscles. As a result, the chemicals that signal pain in the body are slowed down. The cooler temperature also reduces feeling in the affected area. Cold therapy releases endorphins while simultaneously decreasing nerve transmission. This type of therapy is the most effective when used within 48 hours after you have been injured.
However, cryotherapy may not be the best solution for everyone. Patients who have the following health issues should not use cold therapy:
- Have issues with circulation
- Are unconscious
- Are allergic to cooler temperatures
Keep the Area Dry
If you are applying an ice pack to your injury, be sure to dry the area before applying the ice pack. This will prevent the ice packs from sticking to your skin. The ice pack can be left on for a maximum of 20 minutes, but you will know the area has been treated long enough when it becomes numb.
Your chiropractor or therapist may suggest alternating cryotherapy treatment for sports injuries with hot therapy. This technique is used to help reduce inflammation. Heat therapy can come in the form of a heating pad or a hot pack. If you do not see improvement after 24 hours of treatment, or the injury has gotten worse, you should contact a licensed health professional.
Dr. Renee White of Champion Chiropractic can treat your sports injuries effectively with cryotherapy. Schedule an appointment with her today.