Cryotherapy literally means “cold therapy”.
It is a technique where the body is exposed to extreme cold for a few minutes. It can be locally applied or done on the whole body.
Here are 5 benefits of cryotherapy:
1. Reduce arthritic pain
While local application of cryotherapy may be effective, whole-body cryotherapy also significantly reduces pain in people with arthritis. The reduced pain allowed for more aggressive occupational therapy and physiotherapy and ultimately made rehabilitation efforts more effective.
2. Helps treat mood disorders
Whole body cryotherapy sessions can trigger physiological hormonal responses that may help regulate mood disorders like depression and anxiety. Cryotherapy induces the release of endorphins, adrenaline, and noradrenaline, which have been found effective in short-term interventions for both anxiety and depression.
3. Numbs nerve irritation
Athletes have been turning to cryotherapy to treat sports injuries for many years for the main reason that this treatment method can actually numb irritated nerves and ultimately reduce pain. Doctors use cryotherapy to treat the affected area by inserting a small probe into the nearby tissue. This is commonly done on pinched nerves or neuromas, chronic pain, or even acute injuries.
4. Reduces migraine symptoms
Cryotherapy helps reduce the symptoms of migraine by numbing and cooling the nerves in the neck area. A study showed that applying frozen ice packs as a neck wrap to the carotid area significantly decreased the migraine pain among the participants.
5. Help treat low-risk tumors
Local cryotherapy has been used as a cancer treatment, in a process called cryosurgery. Doctors freeze the cancer cells by surrounding them with ice crystals. It’s currently being used to treat some low-risk tumors, including prostate cancer.
Read the full article by Healthline here to learn more about cryotherapy and the many benefits it offers.