cryotherapy ice, heat therapy for pain relief

ICE or HEAT: Which Treatment to Choose

Ice Or Heat

Whats Your Choice Of Treatment?

Ever had any doubts regarding application of ice or heat in case of acute pain?

We hear this question very often as to howto choose ice vs heat as a choice of treatment. Well, remember ice is for fresh injuries & heat is for stiff, chronic aching muscles.

Acute injuries cause the soft tissues to inflame, turn red, hot & swollen. Icing is mostly a mild, drugless way of dulling the pain & inflammation. On the other hand, chronic pains usually involve a lot of tension in the muscles & soft tissues.Comfortable bearable heat will likely soothe these tensed muscles.

More importantly remember-WHAT ICE & HEAT ARE NOT FOR

Both ice & heat are pointless when not needed. Heat can make acute inflammation significantly worse & ice can aggravate symptoms of tightness & stiffness. In fact it can also make any pain worse when its unwanted.So, if you add heat to a fresh injury, watch out: its going to get worse. Instead apply ice & CHILL !

 

pains and aches

Muscle Strain, Sprain or Injury – The RICE Protocol

Muscle Strain, Sprain & Injury: RICEStrains and Sprains - RICE Protocol

Muscle Strains or Muscle pulls often happen when you put a lot of pressure on a muscle or you push it too far, such as when lifting heavy object. Strains are more likely to happen if you haven't warmed up first, to get blood circulating to the muscles. They're also common for someone returning to a sport after a break or suddenly taking up rigorous exercises.
Sprains are caused by injuries, such as twisting your ankle. This kind of injury is common and can happen any time you trip or fall. One lady sprained her ankle when she was crossing a pot-holed road!
Muscle pain - no matter how you describe it - "pulled muscle", "muscle strain", "muscle injury" or "torn tear" the end result is injury to your muscle potentially resulting in muscle spasms, pain, weakness and reduced muscle performance.

Symptoms of Strain, Sprain or Injury
You can suspect a muscle strain or injury if you experience:

  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Muscle tightness
  • Inability to fully stretch your injured muscle

What to do?
Treatment options vary depending on the severity of your strain or tear. Until you've been accurately diagnosed by a medical practitioner, RICE is usually very helpful.

What is RICE Protocol ?

RICE is used as the first treatment for many muscle strains, ligament sprains, or other bruises and injuries. RICE is used immediately  after an injury happens and for the first 24 to 48 hours after the injury. Rest, ice, compression, and elevation can help reduce the  swelling and pain and help you heal faster.

REST

After a muscle, bone, or joint injury you need to take some time off from your activities to allow your body to heal. For example, if you sprained your ankle, you need to not walk around or put weight on your ankle. You should rest the injured body part until it no longer hurts to use it or put pressure on it. You should rest the injured body part for at least 1 to 2 days. If the injury is serious, you may need to see a healthcare provider.

ICING

Icing helps control swelling and inflammation around the injured area. Ice should be put on an injury as soon as possible as early application usually helps the injury heal faster. Never put ice directly on the skin. Wrap a bag of ice in a towel or a piece of clean cloth. If ice is not available, use a cold water bottle.
Leave the ice on for 10-15 minutes then remove it for 10 minutes so the area can warm up to room temperature. You may repeat this process two to three times. Ice helps particularly during the first 1-2 days after an injury.

COMPRESSION

Compression helps limit swelling to the injured area. It also provides some additional support to the injured area. You may use a doctor's bandage, crepe bandage, a dupatta or even a piece of clothing to tie around the injured area. Be sure not to tie it too tightly. Putting it on too tight can cut off the blood supply to the area.

ELEVATION

Elevation is another way to help decrease swelling by using gravity. If you can, keep the injured part above the level of your heart. This helps blood go back to the heart. If you can't raise the injured body part above the level of your heart, at least keep it parallel to the ground.

When to seek Physiotherapy Treatment?
Returning to your routine activities or sport can be easy or complicated depending on the muscle affected. Some muscle tears such as hamstrings are notoriously difficult to get right. That's when it is very important to seek professional assistance. Ideally your physiotherapist should undertake at least:

  • an assessment of your muscle function, core stability and biomechanics to avoid injury recurrence.
  • a muscle rehabilitation program that incorporates components of strength, endurance, flexibility and speed that is specific to your routine activities or chosen sport.

If you suffer a muscle tear which fails to respond after a few days or continues to niggle, please contact ReLivaTM Physiotherapy & Rehab for more specific advice.

In case there is bleeding or shooting pain or excessive swelling or the symptoms do not subside after a day of RICE, you should see a doctor.

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ReLiva Tips for an Injury-free Run

5 Tips to Prepare for an Injury-free Run                                                            

For runners, taking on a run for the first time, the key is to have a solid training base and a detailed plan that allows
for a gradual increase in SPEED as well as DISTANCE.

Too Much. Too Soon. Too Fast

The most common issue that we see is the “Terrible Too’s”. You suddenly get up and start to train without a plan and end up doing “ Too much. Too soon, Too fast”
And that is the most common cause of Injury!
Chalk out a plan of training! Even better, if you do it along with a trained expert. The training plan should strike a balance between speed and strength. It would help you build up stamina, strength and endurance gradually, without causing any injury.

Prevention is better than Cure

Always remember to warm up, before you start running. Many injuries can be avoided by:
warming up  and stretching regularly
Spending 10 minutes to warm up before each run will definitely cost you much lesser time than if you injure yourself and wait back to recover.
However if you do injure, it’s best to see a physiotherapy expert immediately to chalk out a quick recovery plan.

Mix Things Up

It is very easy to get into a habit of running the same route, at the same pace during your training. That begins to limit your muscles and their strength.
“Mix things up!”
Challenge your body with harder runs on certain days and recover at a slower pace another day. This will work-out many more muscles in a much more variety and keep them prepared against injuries.

Keep Moving

Any good training plan needs no more than four days of running or walking every week. That’s not too much to do!
It is important that you don’t overdo it! And equally important, that you keep doing it sincerely! You can make the switch from run & Walk to only run if you
find it too easy. The day you feel, you’re not ready, continue to do walking! But ensure that you ‘Keep Moving’.

Look after your Body

While you train for your run, your body and muscles undergo a lot of wear and tear. Listen to your body! If you are tired, it’s a sign that the body needs rest! Overtraining immediately shows in form of decreased performance and injuries !
Look after your body. Swimming, Sauna or steam room can really help relax and stretch on a bit.

With these 5 things you can easily train for your run without worrying to injure yourself. Enjoy every step that you take to prepare yourself. Remember – “It only makes you stronger and better than what you were before!”

This article is an attempt to make the runners aware of the general thumb rules about running related injuries. These guidelines should not take the place of medical advice if attempting to return to sports following an injury. If an athlete requires assistance during or in the progression of a return to sport program they should consult with their medical expert, or physiotherapist

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