What Temperature Is Best When Using Heat Therapy For Arthritis
When using moist heat therapy, make sure the temperature is not so hot that you burn your skin. Find a temperature that you can comfortably tolerate, whether using a bath, hot water bottle, or spa therapy.
You also need to give it time to work. Use the moist heat application for at least 15 minutes before exercise. Then use it again immediately following exercise. You can also use moist heat anytime you want additional relief from arthritis pain.
When To Chill And When To Heat
Many of these conditions are treatable with medication as prescribed by your health care provider. And, for other situations, over-the-counter pain relievers may be enough to help. But you still may need further relief so here are a few tips to keep in mind when deciding between ice or heat for aching muscles and joints.
Reminder: if any of these conditions are new or dont resolve quickly, be sure to contact your health care provider for more treatment options.
First of all, do not use heat on acute injuries because that extra heat can increase inflammation and delay proper healing.
When dealing with injuries, its best to predominantly choose ice if the injury is acute . The chill constricts blood vessels which numbs pain, relieves inflammation and limits bruising.
If youre sensitive to cold then ice may initially seem uncomfortable or even painful to apply. Heat can feel warm, cozy and be tempting to toss on an injury, says primary care sports medicine physician Anne Rex, DO. But dont be fooled! Ice wins to shut down swelling, inflammation and pain early on where heat may actually make an injury worse.
If youre dealing with lingering injuries then its okay to use heat. The increased blood flow relaxes tight muscles and relieves aching joints. This is especially helpful to improve range of motion on a joint that maybe isnt moving as well.
Muscle strains and sprains
What’s The Treatment For Gout
Should you put heat or ice on gout. Treatments for an acute gout attack are anti-inflammatory drugs like naproxen or ibuprofen, which can provide pain relief. Patients with chronic gout can reap the benefits of changes in diet, exercise, and decreased intake of alcohol to help avoid future attacks. Additionally, chronic gout might also be treated with drugs such as allopurinol, colchicine, lesinurad, febuxostat, or probenecid.
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Now Its Your Turn To Understand What Is Best For Gout Heat Or Ice
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Five Ways To Ease A Gout Attack
If you have gout, you know what its like to suffer from a flare-up. Also known as gouty arthritis, a gout attack begins with a burning or itching feeling in your joints. The next sign is redness, swelling, or severe pain in the joint. This is caused by a buildup of uric acid around the joints, which forms uncomfortable uric crystals. This condition can be so painful that anything touching the jointeven a bedsheetcan cause severe pain.
If you are suffering from a gout attack or flare-up, you dont need to agonize alone or in silence. There are a few things you can do to ease the pain and prevent future flare-ups.
Several over-the-counter treatments can help relieve the pain caused by a gout attack. These nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can lower uric acid levels and treat episodes of inflammation. Some good choices include Aleve, Motrin, and Advil, and, when taken in prescription doses, can be very effective.
Contact Carolina Arthritis for guidance and to learn more about this strategy for your gout attacks.
Change your diet.
Many dietary and lifestyle changes can assist in recovery. Foods high in purines can increase the uric acid in your blood and trigger a gout flare-up. Some of these foods include:
- Some seafood
- Organ meats like liver
- Fatty foods
Ice, elevate, and relax.
Make an appointment with Carolina Arthritis.
Also Check: What Juice To Drink For Gout
How To Safely Ice An Injury
Ice packs are commercially available as freezable gel packs. You can also make them with ice cubes in a plastic bag or tea towel. A pack of frozen peas is also a good option.
To safely ice an injury:
- Never place ice directly on the skin. Always use a cloth barrier like a thin bath towel.
- Keep the ice pack moving to avoid frostbite. Never keep it in one place for more than a couple of minutes.
- Never ice an injury for more than 15 to 20 minutes. It is better to ice an injury several times a day than all at once.
- Remove the pack if you experience prickly pain or the skin appears bright pink or red.
- Do not use an ice pack on the left shoulder if you have a heart condition.
What Is Gout Know The Signs And Risk Factors
4 Minute Read
Medically Reviewed by UPMC Orthopaedic Care
Gout is a potentially debilitating form of inflammatory arthritis that causes pain, redness, stiffness, and swelling in your joints. More than 8 million people in the United States have gout.
The condition usually affects one joint at a time. About half of all gout attacks begin in the big toe, but it also can occur in the ankles, heels, knees, wrists, fingers, and elbows.
Although gout can cause pain, it can be managed with proper treatment.
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What Is Best For Gout Heat Or Ice
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Home Remedies For Gout Flares
While you taking medication to fight the pain and inflammation during a gout flare, there are a few other simple gout home remedies you can use to ease the discomfort. Rest is important try to keep the impacted joint higher than your heart. Ice may also be helpful, because it brings down swelling. Research shows that ice is particularly soothing for gout if youre dealing with a different type of arthritis, a heating pad may be a better choice.
Some people also say that eating cherries or drinking tart cherry juice helps during a gout flare. While studies have shown that cherry lovers may be less likely to have frequent gout flares, its not clear whether loading up on this fruit during an attack will make an immediate difference. Cherries may be helpful because theyre rich in antioxidants, and tart cherries may help lower uric acid levels .
Read Also: How Long Does Gout Pain In Toe Last
Should I Use Heat Or Ice For Acute Injuries
If the new injury is red, swollen, or inflamed, then cooling the injury may help prevent inflammation. For example, if your pain stems from a muscle injury, treat it immediately with RICE — rest, ice, compression, and elevation. Rest the injured body part and then apply ice. You can use an ice pack or a pack of frozen vegetables or fruit for 20 minutes. Then take it off for 20 minutes. Add compression with a firm elastic bandage. Elevate the injured part to keep swelling to a minimum.
Before using moist heat or ice therapy, be sure your skin is dry and free from cuts and sores. If you have visible skin damage, don’t use cold or heat. And always protect your skin with a towel. After using heat or cold, gently move the arthritic joint to reduce stiffness.
How To Treat A Gout Flare
Different medications can be used to address gout, but when youre in the midst of a gout flare, the number-one goal is pain management. Because the pain is so severe, its really important to try to bring it under control quickly, says Dr. Saag.
Even though gout is caused by uric acid buildup, now is not the time to start a drug thats specifically designed to lower uric acid levels.
Instead, your doctor will likely prescribe a higher dose of a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug , such as naproxen, or a steroid medication like prednisone. Your doctor might also inject a steroid directly into the affected joint, or, if the pain is bad enough, start you on an intravenous version of it, says Dr. Saag.
Colchicin is another medication that is sometimes used to manage gout flares. This drug is not a traditional pain reliever, since it doesnt seem to relieve pain caused by other conditions. According to a Cochrane Review, about 40 out of 100 people who use colchine during a gout attack rated their pain 50 percent lower than those who took a placebo, but theres also a high risk of side effects like vomiting, nausea, and diarrhea, especially when taken at high doses.
If youve had gout flares before and are now seeing a new provider or are being treated in the emergency room, be sure to tell the doctor about the treatments youve previously tried during an acute episode and how well they worked for you.
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Can Hot Baths Or Spas Help Arthritis Pain
Many people with arthritis find relief from pain and stiffness with hot baths or spas. The moist heat increases muscle relaxation, boosts blood supply to the site of pain, and relieves rigidity and spasms in the muscles. But avoid hot tubs or spas if you have high blood pressure or heart disease, or if you are pregnant.
Heat Or Ice To Reduce Swelling & Pain Of Gout
Gout is one of the most painful types of arthritis. It is caused by a build-up of uric acid in your system. Sharp uric acid crystals deposit in your joints with a very common place to be the big toe. These deposits of uric acid can appear as lumps under the skin. Gout causes swelling in the joints and to help relieve the swelling, you may wonder which would be the more effective treatment: heat or ice 1.
If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.
Read Also: Can Gout Cause Swelling In Foot
Leading A Gout Free Life
In order to avoid gout attacks, your gout physician may prescribe a medication to reduce the buildup of uric acid in your blood. In most cases patients take this medicine for their entire life, but there are things that you can do reduce the chances of needing a lifetime of medication. Pay special attention to what you eat. This can help you manage the buildup and uric acid and reduce the frequency and duration of your gout attacks. Eating appropriate amounts of a healthy variety of foods to keep your weight under control and to get the nutrition you need. Try to avoid frequent or daily meals consisting of meat, seafood, and alcohol. As always you should drink plenty of fluids, especially water.
Easy Ways To Apply Heat Treatment In Gout
Besides medicines, there are specific other treatments that you can try to get relief from the pain of gout. Hot compression is perfect for any arthritis pain. As gout is also a type of arthritis, you can try hot compression for this. But, you should always consult your doctor about this.
Now, why hot compression is useful for treating gout pain? Once you apply heat to the aching muscles and joints, it relaxes that area and reduces the inflammation and swelling. Besides, heat application can increase lubrication at those stiff muscles and joints to reduce pain. The main reason for gout is the crystallization of uric acid at your joints. When you do hot compress, it provides comfort to these areas, and you feel relieved. There are different ways to apply heat treatment. Have a look-
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Side Effects Of Uricazol
Product safety is extremely important for us. Uricazol contains only natural herb and plant extracts that are generally considered safe. Although numerous customers use Uricazol each day since 2009, no serious side effects have been reported. As with other supplements we recommend that you don’t use Uricazol products if you are nursing or pregnant because the effects on fetus have not been determined. Dont use Uricazol along with blood thinning medication and if you’re suffering from a bleeding disorder.
Symptoms Of Gout Flares
Gout is a type of arthritis that flares and subsides, especially at first. Common symptoms of a gout flare include:
- Intense joint pain that comes on suddenly, often in the middle of the night
- Most commonly affects the big toe can occur in other toe joints, ankle, knee, and more
- Typically strikes one joint at a time more can be affected as the disease progresses
- Affected joint is swollen, painful, warm to the touch, and red
- Pain from a flare can last up a week or two with long periods of remission in between
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Tips For Applying Ice
When you are applying ice to an injury, it is typically recommended that you apply the ice to the area for twenty minutes. Then take the ice off of the area for twenty minutes and repeat with the ice on the injury. You can continue this cycle until the tenderness, swelling, or inflammation goes away.
Ice packs are great, but if you do not have one you can substitute a bag of frozen vegetables such as peas or corn. You can also place ice cubes in a baggie. It is generally recommended that you do not put the frozen pack directly on your skin. Wrap the baggie in a washcloth or paper towel before you apply.
A quick response is the most important thing that you can do for any injury. The sooner that you apply ice to the area to reduce inflammation the higher the chances the injury will quickly heal. Additionally, ice can prevent or limit any internal bleeding. You may also want to use ice after any high-intensity exercise in order to reduce or prevent inflammation.
How Often Should I Use Heat Or Cold Therapy For Arthritis Pain
Try to use moist heat or ice packs at least twice a day for the best relief from pain and stiffness.
According to the American College of Rheumatology, five to 10-minute ice massages applied to a painful area within the first 48 hours of pain onset can provide relief. So can heat, which relaxes the muscles. Heat should be used for pain that lasts longer than 48 hours.
Also Check: Does Gout Cause Ankle Swelling
Immediate Relief Expert Care
Gout pain in your toes and feet can be extremely uncomfortable. While these home remedies may offer temporary relief, you might need professional care.
If you begin fevering, this is often a sign of infection. Dont wait to come in.
Weve got a full team ready to help, right away. Visit our contact page to make a quick appointment or give us a call today at 239.936.5400.
Foods Herbs And Supplements
The following have shown at least some promise for gout.
Coffee. According to the Mayo Clinic, theres evidence that drinking a moderate amount of coffee a day can lower gout risk.
Antioxidant-rich fruits. Dark-colored fruits like blackberries, blueberries, grapes, raspberries, and especially cherries can help keep uric acid under control.
Vitamin C. Consuming moderate amounts of vitamin C is also connected to lower uric acid levels. However, very large doses of the vitamin can actually raise uric acid levels.
Other supplements. There are also herbal supplements that have been found to effectively reduce inflammation including devils claw, bromelain, and turmeric. These havent been specifically studied for gout, but they may help with the swelling and pain associated with an attack.
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