In our article about the medical treatment of lower leg pain, we mentioned ice as a part of the RICE strategy, which includes rest, applying ice to the affected area, creating compression, and elevating your leg. Temperature therapy is one of those home treatments doctors use as a part of their therapy and recommend for almost all patients.
It’s because ice and cold temperatures have the property of shrinking blood vessels and counter inflammation. It also numbs your nerves and reduces the sensation of pain. Temperature therapy also features moderately high temperatures, and you can alternate between hot and cold treatment for better results depending on your main problem.
Cold temperature works excellently if the main problem is inflammation. Warm temperatures are better if you have muscle tension and want to improve blood flow. Many of us alternate between both and get the best of both worlds.
However, it is worthwhile to highlight a few things about temperature therapy. If you’re using cold temperatures, use a cloth and don’t put ice directly on your skin to avoid a temperature injury known as frostbite. And if you’re working with hot therapy, avoid very high temperatures. They are not more effective than moderate or warm temperatures and will more likely cause burns.