Cryotherapy, or “Ice Therapy,” is an excellent way to help with muscle spasms in the body. This therapy is well known to help numb painful areas as well as provide a cooling relief to affected soft tissues. The therapy consists of applying cold compresses on to the skin to effectively reduce the temperature of the skin as well as constrict the blood vessels in the area.
If you are suffering from a muscle spasm or just recently had a soft tissue injury, cryotherapy is an excellent way to help reduce swelling and further injury in the early stages of your healing process. This therapy is rather inexpensive and is something that can be done at home as well as in the office.
There are three stages to cryotherapy treatment. After application of the cold compress to the affected area the stages are:
- cold phase;
- warming phase;
- numb phase.
The treatment is done for 20 minutes as the cold and warming phase at the beginning of therapy lasts for approximately 6-8 minutes and the numb phase should last for 12-15 minutes. The numb phase should be uncomfortable but tolerable and this is when the body is healing. When doing the therapy at home, ice or a qualified cold-pack, should have a thin layer (one piece of paper towel) between the compress and the body. 20 minutes of application, or “on,” and 60 minutes “off.” Repeat as directed.
*It is uncommon but some people suffer from an ice allergy. If an adverse reaction occurs following treatment, please consult with one of our physicians.