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Ice pack or heat pack? What does your injury need?

Ice pack or heat pack? What does your injury need?

Nothing adds to the pain of an injury more than the conflicted suggestions to treat it. Have you ever been told to apply an ice pack on an injury that just kept getting worse with time? Or did you think a heat pack is the best solution to all kinds of pain?

Well, here's a tiny surprise for you--ice and heat packs belong to two different sets of utilities and are not substitutes for each other.

So today we'll tell you which injuries beckon the usage of a heat pack and which ones demand the immediate attention of an ice pack.

Ice packs: Ice treatments are believed to be beneficial while treating injuries related to soft tissues. Short-term injuries like muscle pain and sprains should be given the ice treatment to make the affected area numb--and thus, less prone to swelling.

However, studies indicate that ice packs do necessarily help heal a wound entirely, but is useful during initial pain relief.

Which means, ice packs should be used for:

1. Instant pain relief

2. Reduce swelling

3. Reduce inflammation

4. Treating sprains and soft-tissue damage

Heat packs: Every injury is different and should not be treated with the same approach. Heat packs are good for treating injuries that are chronic in nature and tend to make an area stiff. While ice packs make the affected area numb by reducing blood supply, heat treatment actually accelerates the blood flow, thus reducing stiffness and facilitating flexibility. Hence, heat packs should be used for:

1. Chronic muscle and joint pain

2. Spasms and period cramps

3. Conditions like arthritis