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Ice, Ice, Baby - Cryotherapy Treatment

Cryotherapy is the process of using cooling methods to treat and aid healing in soft tissue and is thought to be one of the most effective ways to treat a new injury. Research into cryotherapy has found that the cooling effects of ice on an injury and in particular damage to soft tissue can reduce the amount of swelling and inflammation, reduce pain and also speed up the healing process. When an injury occurs, tissues and blood vessels can become damaged or stretched and dying cells can cause these vessels to dilate causing the swelling. Patients may also suffer muscle spasms and blood flow may become restricted, subjecting the patient to further pain. Applying ice to the injury will help to restrict the blood flow from the injury which causes the swelling and also gives a numbing affect to the patient. The PRICE method (Protect, Rest, Ice, Compress, Elevate) is a commonly used and highly effective method of treating an injury. This involves icing the injury as soon as possible for 10 minutes then every 2 hours for at least 48 hours after. A compression bandage will then assist in reducing the swelling and keeping the injury elevated will limit blood flow. Rest is obviously a very important aspect of recovery to allow healing to take place without aggravating the injury. When using ice therapy, there are a couple of implications you should take note of. • You should check how a person reacts to ice before applying as it may be more painful for the patient to have ice on their injury if they are sensitive. Also you may want to check that the individual is able to feel the ice or any feeling at all in the injury before applying as this may indicate further complications in which ice may only mask. • You should never apply ice to a chest as this could potential cause a reaction to the muscles and has implications on the heart • You should check if the individual suffers high blood pressure as ice application can increase the pressure in the blood vessels See all our Hot and Cold Therapy Products