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Is Heat Or Ice Better For Arthritis Knee Pain

How To Use Consistent Deep Tissue Stretching To Improve Knee Strength & Health

Ice or Heat for Knee Arthritis?

For many people, the treatment won’t just end there. Stretching is also an important part of tendon healing – and it’s the final stepneeded when healing your knee injury with conservative treatment methods.

You would be suprised by how many people there are that don’t understand the importance of stretching a knee injury. Before returning to full activity after an injury, physical therapists prescribe gentle stretching… This is because stretching is the secret of healing any soft tissue injury. Consistent stretching is one of the only solutions available to break up scar tissue that forms on your knee as it heals.

Stretching with use of a Cold Compress or Ice Pack and TShellz Wrap® is even better!

Heat Wrap Soothes Knee Pain

Heated Knee Wrap May Be Better Than Over-the-Counter Arthritis Drugs

April 1, 2005 — Low-level heat wraps are better at relieving knee pain than acetaminophen and provide more flexibility than ibuprofen, say pain specialists.

With the recent warnings about the potential dangers of chronic use of oral pain medications,oral pain medications, doctors and patients have been looking for alternative treatment options, says researcher Bill McCarberg, MD, the founder of the Chronic Pain Management Program for Kaiser Permanente in San Diego, Calif.

“For the first time, we have clinical evidence that heat wrap therapy can significantly reduce osteoarthritis pain.” McCarberg presented his study results at the annual meeting of the American Pain Society in Boston.

Heat Therapy May Be Superior For Knee Osteoarthritis Pain

If you have knee osteoarthritis, using heat therapy can be a life-saver.

It can help relax your tight muscles, reduce stiffness, and prepare your joints for physical activity.

In people with this condition, studies recommend using moist heat every other day for 20 minutes at a time, for 4 weeks at least. It may help decrease pain while improving your knee function.

You can maximize these results by pairing this protocol with the medication your doctor prescribed and doing a rehabilitation program.

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Applying Heat Vs Cold To An Arthritic Joint

Using heat and/or cold therapies on an arthritic joint is a simple, inexpensive alternative treatment that can help to alleviate pain, stiffness and swelling. Read:Alternative Treatments

Heat can relax muscles and help lubricate joints. Heat therapy may be used to relieve muscle and joint stiffness, help warm up joints before activity, or ease a muscle spasm.

Learn more: When and Why to Apply Cold to an Arthritic Joint

Alternating heat and cold. Some people alternate between heat and cold therapy. For example:

  • A patient may be encouraged to use heat therapy to warm up a joint before physical therapy exercise and to use cold therapy after exercise.
  • A person can use heat therapy in the morning to loosen up an osteoarthritic knee and use cold therapy to reduce swelling a few hours later. This process can be repeated throughout the day.

Cold therapy is recommended for certain types of arthritis that cause painful inflammation flares, such as gout and pseudogout. People with other types of arthritisincluding but not limited to osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and ankylosing spondylitismay benefit from both heat and cold therapy.

Learn more:

There are no universally accepted guidelines for when to use heat or cold therapy on osteoarthritic joints, and recommendations are mixed.16 People with osteoarthritis are advised to experiment with both heat and cold therapy to find what works best for them.7

When Should I Seek Medical Attention

Is It Better to Heat or Ice a Knee with Arthritis

While ice and heat therapy are a good way to give yourself some regular low-effort pain relief and can be a regular and important part of your self-care toolkit its a good idea to call your doctor if you experience new or worsening joint pain.

This includes situations in which ice or heat previously worked well enough to relive your symptoms but doesnt anymore, Dr. Bose says. If youre not getting relief, it should trigger a warning bell, she says. Maybe theres something deeper inside, or this might need more systemic treatment rather than topical.

These symptoms might mean your medications and other therapies arent working as well as theyre supposed to. It could indicate that your arthritis is progressing, Dr. Bose says. Either way, its better to know.

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Types Of Heat Therapy For Arthritis

There are several types of heat therapy, called thermotherapy, options for arthritis. Heat therapy improves circulation and causes your blood vessels to expand. This helps your body to deliver more blood, oxygen, and nutrients to the affected area, which may reduce inflammation, stiffness, and pain. Heat therapy may also improve mobility, which makes it easier to relax, loosen up, and move.

If a heat therapy session causes swelling, redness, or inflammation avoid further treatments until your symptoms subside. Avoid using heat therapy during a flare-up or the acute stage of an injury. Talk with a healthcare professional before using heat treatments if you have heart disease or high blood pressure.

Do not use heat therapy if you have any of the following conditions:

  • diabetes
  • multiple sclerosis

Can Hot Baths Or Spas Help Arthritis Pain

Many people with arthritis find relief from pain and stiffness with hot baths or spas. The moist heat increases muscle relaxation, boosts blood supply to the site of pain, and relieves rigidity and spasms in the muscles. But avoid hot tubs or spas if you have high blood pressure or heart disease, or if you are pregnant.

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How Does Heat Work

When I say heat, what I mean is a warm compress, hot water bottle or wheat cushion applied to an area of skin around an injury. You could also get these effects from a hot bath or shower, but this would be a less targeted way of treating your knee.

Heat works roughly in the opposite way that ice works. It, too, has a number of effects to the body when applied around an injury:

  • Heat causes an effect called vasodilation to the blood vessels around an area which means a widening of the vessels, increasing blood flow to an injured site. You wouldnt want to use heat on a recently sprained ankle
  • Heat doesnt affect the nerves like ice does, but it does increase healthy blood flow to an area, which can speed up healing in some injuries . It also helps to flush away the nasties within the blood that invade an injured area.
  • Heat has an effect on the surrounding muscles and joints whereby it loosens them up by making the soft tissues more elastic. This basically means you get more flexibility in a body part just by heating it up! Try to stretch a muscle in the cold, then try to stretch the same muscle after a hot shower youll find you can stretch much further after the heat treatment.

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Instructions To Do Ice Therapy At Home

Ice vs. Heat for Knee Pain | Knee Exercises

You can use cold packs, a bag of frozen vegetables, or frozen peas for this.

If its not uncomfortable, you could apply the cold pack directly to your skin. But if it is, place a thin towel or pillowcase between the ice pack and your skin to prevent burns.

In fresh injuries, its best to do this for 10 minutes, three times per day tops. Studies suggest that more than that may suppress the proper healing of the tissues.

For chronic conditions like gout or rheumatoid arthritis, you can leave the ice for longer.

Related:Knee Swelling Reduction in 4 Steps

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Risk Of Bias In Included Studies

The quality of the studies was assessed by the two independent reviewers . The quality assessment addressed the extent to which the RCT design, data collection and statistical analysis minimized or avoided biases in its treatment comparisons . A validated scale was used to perform the quality assessment. This scale includes items pertaining to description of randomisation, appropriateness of blinding, dropouts and consideration of withdrawals and followups with regard to possible effects on data analysis, with a possible total score of 5. Differences in scoring were resolved by consensus. A third reviewer was consulted when necessary. The median methodological quality of these RCTs was 2. No trial scored full points for randomisation, nor for double blinding, and only one reported withdrawals or dropouts.

How Does Heat And Cold Help Arthritis Pain

Heat or cold therapy works by stimulating your body’s own healing force. For instance, heat dilates the blood vessels, stimulates blood circulation, and reduces muscle spasms. In addition, heat alters the sensation of pain. You can use either dry heat — such as heating pads or heat lamps — or moist heat — such as warm baths or heated wash cloths.

Conversely, cold compresses reduce swelling by constricting blood vessels. While cold packs may be uncomfortable at first, they can numb deep pain.

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When To Use Caution

Paraffin wax treatments supply moist heat but overheating can cause burns.

Use caution on areas with decreased sensation if you have neuropathy or Raynauds syndrome. Extreme temperatures can damage skin.

Wonder if its safe to use ice when youre burning up with fever? Theres nothing wrong with using cold to bring down a fever, says Dr. Kriegler.

How Heat Can Help Relieve Pain

Pin on ABCs

We know that when it comes to temperature and how each makes our skin feel, heat and ice couldn’t be more opposite one warms you up, the other cools you down. And this difference extends to what’s happening under your skin, too.

“Applying heat causes your blood vessels to expand, increasing blood flow,” explains Dr. Brooks. “This brings more biological products, such as oxygen and nutrients, to the injured area, which can help relieve the source of your pain over time.”

As a result, heat has a number of potential and perceived benefits, such as:

  • Reducing pain
  • Alleviating muscle cramps and spasms

“Similar to ice, heat should only be applied for a limited amount of time. If you’re applying heat via a heating pad, the appropriate amount of time is between 20 and 30 minutes,” recommends Dr. Brooks.

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Pcs Heated Knee Massager 74v 6000mah Rechargeable Battery Knee Wraps Electric Heated Knee Braces 3 Adjustable Temperature Vibration Massage Knee Warps For Pain Relief Arthritis

  • HIGH QUALITY FAST HEATING MATERIAL: Knee massager are made of upgrade SBP OK fabric, 3MM warm material, can keep the heat not lost ,easy to heat fast, and durable ,no harm to the human body.Adjustable Velcro for any age
  • RECHARGEABLE CHARGING BATTERIES KNEE HEAT MASSAGER: Electric heat knee bracess battery is 7.4V 6000 MAH, fully charged takes only 2 to 2.5 hours and can work for about 5.5 to 7 hours, which saved a lot of time and experience for us.Dont plug for work.Plug is only used for battery charging
  • 3 HEATING LEVELS AND 3 VIBRATING LEVELS FOR ADJUSTMENT: The three-speed constant temperature of knee heating pads : 45°C/113 °F, 55°C/131°F, 60°C/140°F, adjust with the heart, upgrade to increase the heating braces , so that the knees fully enjoy the massage heating effect brought by the knee massager. The vibration massage and heating knee braces not only can be used independently, can also be used together.

The knee is a hinge joint that connects the femur and tibia bones and helps with movement. The knee can become injured or sore from arthritis, overuse, or other conditions. A heated knee massager can help to relieve pain and discomfort in the knee. This massager has three adjustable temperature settings and vibration massage. It is rechargeable and has a 6000mAh battery. It comes in two sizes, small/medium and large/extra-large.

What Are The Warning Signs Of Arthritis

Pain from arthritis can be ongoing or can come and go. It may occur when you’re moving or after you have been still for some time. You may feel pain in one spot or in many parts of your body.

Your joints may feel stiff and be hard to move. You may find that it’s hard to do daily tasks you used to do easily, such as climbing stairs or opening a jar. Pain and stiffness may be more severe during certain times of the day or after you’ve done certain tasks.

Some types of arthritis cause swelling or inflammation. The skin over the joint may appear swollen and red and feel hot to the touch. Some types of arthritis can also cause fatigue.

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The Art Of Using Hot And Cold Therapy

Hot and cold therapy each have their own appropriate uses. You should never apply heat to a joint that is already hot, red, and irritated, for example, nor should you apply cold to a joint that’s stiff and not moving well. Remember, heat helps muscles relax cold helps to minimize inflammation and pain.

It’s also important to be careful when using hot and cold therapy to manage arthritis pain, or you might end up with damage to your skin from exposure to relatively extreme temperatures.

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Here are suggestions for safely using heat therapy devices such as a heating pad, a heat pack, a hand towel soaked in hot water, a warm water soak, or a hot water bottle:

  • Make sure that the temperature is never uncomfortably high you don’t want to put your skin at risk for burns.
  • Place a cloth or towel between your skin and the heat source to prevent burns.
  • Don’t apply heat to skin that is cut or injured in any way.
  • Never apply heat for longer than 20 minutes at a time.

Suggestions for safely using cold therapy devices such as a cold pack, a bag of frozen vegetables, or a bag of ice:

After using heat or cold on your joint pain, always evaluate your skin and look for any signs of damage like a change in color, rash, or blisters.

Switching between hot and cold therapy can offer excellent arthritis pain management benefits, as long as each one is used appropriately.

Our Knee Therapy Formula Isproven To Work

When to use heat or cold for knee pain?

It may seem hard to believe, but our Knee TShellz Wraps® is intended to assist you in recovering from your injury by reducing your swelling and inflammation induced pain and maximizing blood flow where it’s needed most.

Here at MendMyKnee we pride ourselves in helping you with your healing and recovery process. Everyone at MendMyKnee has tested and used the products, finding solutions to conditions that do not fit into the norm. This dedication to our customers and our products goes hand-in-hand with our guarantees to you as a customer:

  • Guarantee #1 – Use your products diligently for up to 60 days and you will experience a significant reduction in pain. If not, I encourage you to send back the items for a 100% refund.
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What Type Of Doctors Treat Arthritis

Part of your treatment plan may involve working with different health-care specialists. Some common health-care professionals and their role in your treatment are described below. Most doctors make referrals to one of a group of health professionals with whom they work. But you too can ask your doctor to request medical services you think might help you.

Your family doctor may be an excellent source of medical care for your arthritis. Besides having your medication records, your family doctor already has your medical history, is familiar with your general physical health and knows of any past illnesses or injuries. All these facts will give your family doctor a head start in prescribing a treatment plan most suited to your needs.

If your arthritis affects many joints or other parts of the body or seems resistant to treatment, you may benefit from seeing a rheumatologist. This is a doctor with special training and experience in the field of arthritis. Your family doctor, the local chapter of the Arthritis Foundation or the county medical society can refer you to a rheumatologist. You can also search for a rheumatologist on the American College of Rheumatology web site.

Should I Use Heat Or Cold For My Arthritis Pain

Its a common question when trying to find relief for your symptoms- should I use heat or cold for my arthritis pain? The answer to this question simply is there are therapeutic benefits to using both hot and cold treatments to help address your pain symptoms, especially the pain associated with arthritis. Both heat and cold treatments can stimulate the body to heal itself. The trick is knowing when to reach for the heating pad or the ice pack or both and how long to use each treatment to alleviate the pain being experienced.

Heat is an effective treatment for loosening stiff joints and soothing tired muscles. It loosens the body up prior to exercise and can help with relaxation and reducing muscle spasms. It also increases blood flow to an area and promotes healing. Heat however is not recommended on swollen, red or irritated joints, that is where a cold pack will be helpful. Cold treatments are effective for acute pain when constricting blood flow aids in decreasing inflammation and swelling.

Cold treatments include applying a frozen gel pack or a frozen bag of vegetables to the affected area, helping to reduce inflammation, leading to joint pain. Switching between hot and cold therapy can offer excellent arthritis pain management benefits, as long as each one is used appropriately.

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