Injuries are an inevitable part of life. No matter how cautious we are, we still fall victim to one form of physical harm or another. Injuries result in pain and inflammation of muscles and tendons, resulting in a lot of discomfort for the afflicted. Back and hip injuries are two of the most common injuries among the population all over the world is will be the focus of today’s article. While there are many ways of treating these problems, cold therapy is an effective way of finding reprieve from the discomfort of hip and back pain. Keep reading for more information.
What is Cold Therapy?
Cold therapy is the treatment of a condition with the application of a cold medium such as an ice pack, ice gels and so on. It helps to reduce blood flow when applied to an area, which results in a reduction in pain and swelling in the area. Cold therapy is non-invasive and extremely cost-effective and when used correctly, cold therapy can help reduce the symptoms of people with back and hip pain.
Dealing with Back Problems?
Back pain is widespread and it is estimated that over 60 percent of the world population will experience back pain in their lifetime. Back pain can be acute or chronic, and a person can experience pain in different parts of the back. Some of the common back problems include some of the following:
- Arthritis: Caused when the discs in the spine can’t absorb shock anymore which leads to the bones rubbing against each other to stimulate the growth of bone spurs.
- Bulging or slipped discs: In this case, one of the soft discs between the vertebral column extends over the edge of the column.
- Osteoporosis: A condition in which the bones become weak and brittle, making them collapse and form compression fractures.
- Sciatica: Caused when the sciatic nerve is pinched, resulting in lower back pain and can also create a sharp pain in one or both legs.
- Pregnancy-induced back pain: Caused by the extra weight the pregnant woman has to carry.
- Referred pain: This is when the pain in another part of the body (such as in the hips or legs) causes pain in the lower back or groin region.
- Fibromyalgia: A chronic pain condition in which the back and other parts are in pain. For more information, refer to the Fibromyalgia Health Center.
Cold Therapy for Back Problems
To relieve pain and swelling related to the back, you can do something as simple as applying an ice pack, a bag of frozen vegetables, an ice cup, for minor pain. For medium to severe pain, another option is to use a cold therapy back wrap such as the following:
Just note that with whatever method you decide to use, cold therapy should not be applied directly to the skin. Always place a towel in between the device and your skin, to prevent the ice from damaging tissue. Ice the affected area for 10-20 minutes every 2-3 hours. You can also ice for 10-15 minutes in the morning, afternoon, and before going to bed at night.
The solution will be different for each and every person so you may need to experiment with the timings to find the ideal solution for yourself, and of course, consult your doctor before using this form of therapy.
Living with Hip Problems?
Hip pain is also a very widespread issue and can be caused by several different reasons, including but not limited to the following:
- Soft tissue pain: This is a pain in the hip caused by an injury or damage to the soft tissues surrounding the hip.
- Osteoarthritis: This is the degeneration of the cartilage in the joint.
- Referred pain: This is when pain from another location in the body leads to painful sensations around the hip.
- Bone fracture: Broken bones in the hip area may cause pain and swelling in the hip.
- Skin infection: Hip pain can also be due to an infection of the skin around the hips.
- Bursitis: This is pain caused by the inflammation of the sac that helps to absorb shocks in the hip.
- IT Band syndrome: A painful condition whereby the thighbone (femur) rubs against connective tissue, resulting in pain sensation and inflammation in the hip, and sometimes in the knee area as well.
- Straining: Straining the hips can also lead to tears of tissues which results in inflammation and pain.
Can Cold Therapy Help With Hip Pain?
Absolutely. Applying cold therapy to the affected hip can provide some much needed relief. Similar to back problems mentioned above, there are several ways to apply cold therapy to your hip. In our opinion, one of the most convenient options is to use a cold therapy hip wrap, such as the one by SimplyJnJ below:
The cost is reasonable, especially for what you get with it. Not only does it give you the ice therapy functionality, it also has compression built it. The added compression make sure that the ice gel pack is properly and consistently applied to your skin, which means deeper and longer cold therapy treatment. It was also designed with portability in mind. Just attach it and away you go.
Cold therapy is a great option for back and hip pain, however, before you begin this form of treatment, we highly recommend that you consult with your doctor/physician. They know your body better than we do, and probably better than you do and they may recommend some other form of treatment depending on your symptoms.
Disclaimer – We are not doctors here at CAHS. The information above was posted for informational purposes and should not be taken as medical advice.