Quick Answer: Should I Apply Ice Or Heat First?

How long after icing should I apply heat?

(See “Options for applying ice.”) Ice may continue to be useful in treatment as long as there is pain, swelling, inflammation, or spasm.

There is no need to switch to heat after 48 hours or alternate between ice and heat..

How do you alternate ice and heat?

Do not apply ice for longer than 15 to 20 minutes at a time. And do not fall asleep with the ice on your skin. You may also want to try switching between heat and cold. Use heat for 15 to 20 minutes, then a few hours later use ice for 10 to 15 minutes.

How can I speed up muscle recovery?

How to treat a pulled muscleRest. Rest the muscle for a few days or until your doctor gives you the okay. … Ice. Apply ice to the injury for 20 minutes each hour you’re awake. … Compression. Wrapping the muscle with an elastic bandage can help bring down swelling. … Elevation. … Medication. … Heat.

What happens when you massage a bruise?

That should keep it from becoming worse than if you kept running around. You may want to massage the sore spot when you’re resting, but it’s a bad idea. That can make the injured spot worse. You may break more blood vessels under the skin and make the bruised area larger.

What happens if you ice for more than 20 minutes?

Greater than 20 minutes of icing can cause reactive vasodilation, or widening, of the vessels as the body tries to make sure the tissues get the blood supply they need. Studies have also shown 30 to 40 minutes in between icing sessions are needed to counter this reaction.

Should I ice or heat first?

“Ice is a great choice for the first 72 hours after an injury because it helps reduce swelling, which causes pain. Heat, on the other hand, helps soothe stiff joints and relax muscles. However, neither option should be used for more than 10 to 15 minutes at a time.”

How many days should you ice a bruise?

Ice the bruise with an ice pack wrapped in a towel. Leave it in place for 10 to 20 minutes. Repeat several times a day for a day or two as needed. Compress the bruised area if it is swelling, using an elastic bandage.

Does heat speed up muscle recovery?

If you have an injury or inflammation, steer clear of heat therapy for at least two to three days. “After the acute phase of the injury, you can use heat to help with recovery and relax muscles,” Kurtz says. “A heat pack or submersion in a hot tub may help with muscle strains and promoting range of motion.”

Why icing is bad?

The problem with using ice as a vasoconstrictor is that, while it limits blood supply and therefore reduces swelling, it also limits arrival of immune cells and thus interferes with core parts of healing.

Does ice promote healing?

It’s a natural part of healing and allows immune cells to better access the injured area. Though inflammation can be positive, to an extent, it can also get out of hand and cause debilitating swelling and pain. Ice reduces swelling and inflammation.

How can I make a bruise go away overnight?

The following treatments can be done at home:Ice therapy. Apply ice immediately after the injury to reduce blood flow around the area. … Heat. You can apply heat to boost circulation and increase blood flow. … Compression. Wrap the bruised area in an elastic bandage. … Elevation. … Arnica. … Vitamin K cream. … Aloe vera. … Vitamin C.More items…

Is it OK to workout if muscles are still sore?

In most cases, gentle recovery exercises like walking or swimming are safe if you’re sore after working out. They may even be beneficial and help you recover faster. But it’s important to rest if you’re experiencing symptoms of fatigue or are in pain.

How can I make my injury heal faster?

Ice – Ice the injured area for 20 to 30 minutes between four and eight times a day to reduce bleeding, swelling, pain and muscle spasms. Compression – Apply compression to the injured area in the initial 48 hours after injury to prevent excessive swelling. Elevation – Elevate the injured limb to reduce swelling.

Does heat make inflammation worse?

Heat can make inflammation significantly worse. Ice can aggravate symptoms of tightness and stiffness; it can also just make any pain worse when it’s unwanted. Both ice and heat are pointless or worse when unwanted: icing when you’re already shivering, or heating when you’re already sweating.

Is it better to put ice or heat on a bruise?

On the day you get a bruise, apply an ice pack to reduce swelling as well as constrict broken blood vessels. Those vessels then may leak less blood. Avoid heat. In the first two or three days after bruising yourself, a very hot bath or shower could cause more bleeding and swelling.

Should you massage a pulled muscle?

Massage. Therapeutic massage helps loosen tight muscles and increase blood flow to help heal damaged tissues. Applying pressure to the injured muscle tissue also helps remove excess fluid and cellular waste products. A 2012 study found that massage immediately following an injury may even speed strained muscle healing.

What happens if you ice too long?

Ice should be applied to an acute injury for 10 minutes at a time. Any longer than this could result in tissue damage to the skin by frostbite or lack of blood flow.

What helps ligaments heal faster?

Injured ligaments heal faster when treated in a way to promote good blood flow. This includes short-term use of icing, heat, proper movement, increased hydration, and several sports medicine technologies like NormaTec Recovery and the Graston technique.