How to Treat Back Pain With Ice Packs?

Back pain is a common condition everyone experiences at some point in their lives. It is a condition you are likely to experience regardless of age, health, or activity level.

Fortunately, home-based treatments are often enough to treat back pain successfully. One of them is the use of ice packs which is known as cold therapy.

Keep reading to learn more about treating back pain with reusable ice packs.

Why You May Be Having Back Pain?

The most common cases of back pain often develop due to minor issues or conditions. Unless it is a serious medical condition, you don’t need to undergo tests or imaging studies before you can find out the root cause of your pain.

Generally, the most likely reason you may have back pain is due to mechanical or structural problems with your spine. That may have sounded serious, but don’t panic.

We will talk more about this, and you will find out it is not as serious as it sounds.

Some other causes of back pain include bad posture and serious medical conditions.

  • Mechanical/Structural Problems

You may begin to experience back pain if you develop mechanical or structural problems in the spine, muscles, or tendons in your back. These mechanical or structural problems include sprain, strain, ruptured disk, muscle spasm, Arthritis, etc.

  • Bad Posture

Constantly maintaining bad posture when walking or sitting can also greatly impact how pain develops in your back. Examples of bad posture that causes back pain include over-stretching, standing, or sitting awkwardly for long periods. 

In addition, you may also develop back pain from pushing, pulling, lifting, or carrying heavy objects.

  • Serious Medical Conditions

Of all the conditions we’ve mentioned thus far, back pain resulting from serious medical conditions can be more tricky to handle. In most cases, you may not be able to treat them with home-based treatment alone.

Examples of medical conditions that can cause back pain include endometriosis, spine tumor, Kidney stones, osteoporosis, etc

Cold Therapy – How It Works

Cold therapy works by helping to reduce blood flow to a particular area in the body. 

When blood flow slows down in a body area, it reduces inflammation and swelling, which in turn reduces your pain. It also helps to temporarily reduce nerve activity which is another way of relieving pain.

Since cold therapy is a proven way to deal with back pain, you can use cold gel packs like the Hampton Adams Reusable Ice Pack. Applying this cold gel pack to your aching back can help relieve your pain and reduce swelling.

If you are unsure about how the Hampton Adams Reusable Ice Pack can help, continue to the next section to find out.

How Does the Ice Pack Help?

How exactly does the ice pack relieve back pain when you apply it? 

As explained in the previous section, cold temperatures restrict the blood flow in your muscles, which in turn helps to reduce bruising, swelling, and pain. 

Our ice pack contains advanced gels that hold temperatures longer to soothe muscle pain and aches for a speedy recovery. 

Unlike most ice packs, our ice pack stays soft even after coming right from the freezer. In addition, its flexible form allows you to bend it to fit curves so that it stays on the exact spot you want it to stay.

With our ice pack, you also don’t have to worry about possible explosions or stains caused by gel leaks. 

This is because we have been able to eliminate the possibility of gel leaks by using double-embossed seams. These double-embossed seams that help to keep our premium therapy gel intact will help you enjoy long-lasting healing. 

When to Use Ice Packs?

Generally, the best time to apply cold therapy to your back is in the first 24 to 72 hours after the back injury. Since cold can help to reduce inflammation and swelling, it will reduce your pain by numbing the area.

It will quickly slow down your nerve endings’ response and decrease tissue damage.

Another thing you should consider is the nature of the back injury. If you are experiencing any of the conditions below, you can treat back pain with ice packs.

  • Acute back injury: Ice packs can effectively relieve the pain you experience from an acute injury. For instance, if you strain the muscles on your back by lifting heavy objects, you can consider using ice packs. 

You should, however, note that if you want to treat an acute injury with ice packs, the best time to do so is within two days of the injury. 

  • Sore muscles: Generally, exercise can help you reduce and prevent recurrent back pain. However, depending on the types of exercise you engage in and the intensity, it is possible for the muscles in your back to feel sore after workout sessions. 

Ice packs can help ease the muscle strain and tension you get under these circumstances.

  • Sciatica: Sciatica is the type of pain that occurs in the sciatic nerve. It starts from the lower back and moves from the rear body to the legs. 

If you notice that you are experiencing a sciatica condition, applying ice packs can help reduce the pain and inflammation. Ice packs may also help reduce the muscle spasms you may experience because of the sciatica condition.

When Not to Use Ice Packs?

There are times when you may think an ice pack is an ideal solution for treating your back pain, but you should think twice about that:

  • If you are already cold or the area is already numb.
  • If you have any kind of vascular disease or injury.
  • If you have any sort of sympathetic dysfunction where a nerve disorder may affect your blood flow.
  • If you have an open wound on your back or blistered skin.
  • If you are hypersensitive to cold.
  • If you have sensory disorders, you may not be able to feel if the treatment is causing damage to your skin. An instance of this type of case is if you have diabetes. Undergoing cold therapy can result in nerve damage and reduced sensitivity.
  • If you have stiff muscles.

How to Use Reusable Gel Ice Packs?

If you want the best result with the gel ice pack treatment, ensure to ice the area at least three times a day. You can ice the area for 10 minutes once an hour on the first day, then ice the area for 10 minutes every 2 to 3 hours on the second and third day. 

After the first three days, you can pick up a new pattern where you ice the area for 10 to 15 minutes 3 times a day. This means you ice the area for 10 to 15 minutes in the morning, in the afternoon after work or school, and then about half an hour before you go to bed. 

You should also ice the area after engaging in any prolonged activity or stressful exercise.

Avoid applying ice packs for a duration that’s longer than 15 to 20 minutes at a time. Adhering to this precaution will help prevent nerve, tissue, and skin damage. 

Alternating Between Cold and Heat Therapy

You may also want to try switching between heat and cold. For example, use heat for 15 to 20 minutes, and then a few hours later, use ice for 10 to 15 minutes.

You don’t necessarily need to switch between both treatments if you prefer one to the other, but switching can offer you a wider range of advantages.

Using heat treatment improves your blood circulation, which in turn helps with your healing process. A proper combination of heat treatments with cold packs makes healing more effective.

Other Cold Therapy Treatments

Some other cold treatment options include:

  • Coolant sprays
  • Ice baths
  • Ice massage
  • Cryo stretching, where you use cold to reduce muscle spasms during stretching exercises
  • Cryokinetics, which combines cold treatment and active exercise. This mostly useful for ligament sprains

Preventing Back Pain

Here are some precautions you can take to prevent frequent back pain:

  • Maintain good sitting and standing posture all the time.
  • Try doing some shoulder shrugs or stretches at regular intervals. This will help ease the build-up of tension in your body.
  • Treat yourself to a full-body massage once in a while. 
  • Ensure to drink plenty of water constantly. It helps to flush out toxins from your body.
  • Get a chair with soft padding to make yourself comfortable at all times.
  • Try to avoid lifting heavy items too often. If you have to do some heavy lifting at the gym, give your muscles time to rest between your workout sessions.
  • Take short breaks at work.
  • Use pillows to aid your back when sleeping.
  • Apply pain relief creams or patches on your back.

You may notice back pain more frequently if you work out or engage in sports. Our ice packs can help relieve your back pain. In addition, they will help you prevent tissue damage and inflammation. 

If our ice packs don’t help with the pain, you may need a doctor’s help with a surgical plan to help you get the treatment you need.  

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