What is Heat Therapy?
Heat therapy implicates the use of a heat causing agents to the body. It is a cost effective, non-invasive and therapeutic method for helping different complaints of pain related issues identified with muscular dysfunctions and particularly neck and back aches.
Hot showers, boiling point water bottles, heat pads, are the things heat therapy and have been utilized for a considerable length of time to battle spinal pains, muscle and joint aches. Actually, clinical information demonstrates that soreness is diminished fundamentally 72 hours post-exercise without warmth; however it diminishes much speedier with the use of local heat.
Common uses of Heat Therapy
Heat therapy is commonly used in the conditions of:
- Joint stiffness
- Chronic muscular and joint aches
- Fatigued or overworked muscles
- Muscle spasms
How to apply Heat therapy?
There are two main methods of heat therapy application. These are
- Local ( hot water bottles, heating pads, moist heat, heat wraps)
- Systemic (hot bath, sauna, steam bath, hot shower)
Following are the guidelines for application of heat therapy:
- Shield yourself from direct contact with warming gadgets.
- Wrap warmth sources inside of a folded towel to forestall skin burns.
- Stay hydrated amid systemic warmth treatment.
- Maintain a strategic distance from prolonged exposure to systemic heat treatment.
It once was considered that 20 minutes of high level of heat took after by 20 minutes of no heat was the best treatment. While clinical studies demonstrate the utilization of persistent low-level heat treatment is compelling for management of pain.
Benefits of Heat Therapy
Heat therapy comprises of the following beneficial effects:
- Reduces joint stiffness
- Improves circulation
- Reduces muscle spasms
- Increases metabolic activity
- Provides nutrients and oxygen
- Removes toxins and waste products
- Relieves joint and muscular pain
- Removes lactic acid
- Increases flexibility of ligaments and tendons
- Improves range of motion
- Provides general relaxation
- Healing of damaged tissue
- For treating tension related headaches and migraines
- Increases the extensibility of collagen
- Promotes vasodilation
- Reduces inflammation and edema
- Stimulates thermo receptors
Limitations of Heat Therapy
The following mentioned conditions in which heat treatment is not suitable:
- Altered sensations
- Hypersensitivity or hyposensitivity to heat
- Circulatory problems
- Acute phase of injury
- Deep Venous Thrombosis
- Malignancy or tumors
Controversies of Heat Therapy
In spite of the fact that there is no immediate confirmation identifying with the viability of heat therapy, recent guidelines recommend that it might be utilized as a part of conjunction with other manual and physical types of treatment (i.e. multimodal consideration) in the initial three weeks after whiplash injuries (yet kept away from for the initial 48-72 hours).