There are many types of pain, and distinguishing between cold and hot compresses can speed recovery and reduce pain. The reader's digest website summed it up.
Sprain: cold compress. Hot compressions can make the swelling caused by a sprain worse, and cold compressions can ease it, said John conroy, an assistant professor at the wexner medical center at Ohio state university.
Dysmenorrhea: hot compress. Dysmenorrhea is caused by prolonged contraction of the uterus. Hot compresses relax muscles and improve blood flow, which in turn reduces pain.
Headache: cold or hot compress. Tense headaches can be treated with a hot compress, which helps relax tight muscles in the neck and jaw. Headache caused by swelling or inflammation of the sinuses. Use a hot compress to warm the nasal passages and allow secretions to flow out. In contrast, cold compresses work better for migraines or headaches caused by vascular problems.
Hives: cold compress. The quickest way to relieve itching and swelling caused by hives is to apply a cold compress to the itchy area, except for hives caused by cold.
Bruises: cold compress. When skin bruises appear, apply a cold compress for 15 minutes per hour at first. This will allow the bruise to heal faster, reducing swelling and numbing pain.
Muscle strain: hot compress. For muscle stiffness and pain caused by a strain, hot moisture works better. A hot compress relaxes muscles and relieves discomfort.
Back pain: cold compress first, then hot compress. Cold compresses give temporary relief from the pain. In the long run, some lower back pain is associated with stiffness, and hot compresses can relax potential muscle spasms.
Insect bites: cold compress. A short period of cold compress will initially relieve the pain and tenderness caused by the bite. In addition to relieving pain and itching, it can also reduce inflammation in the bite area.
Arthritis: cold or hot compress is ok. Hot compresses help relax tight muscles; Cold compress can cure inflammation in joints.
Tendonitis: apply cold compress first, then hot compress. Experts at the Mayo clinic say the first three days after an injury are more effective, helping to reduce inflammation. After three days, a hot compress increases blood flow to the injured area and speeds healing. (CAI lichao)
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