Heat Therapy

Heat can be applied in many ways; using a heat pack or an Infrared Heat Lamp. The purpose of applying heat is usually to decrease pain. It is usually most effective in the chronic phase of treatment. Heat can help muscles to relax and it can affect your nerves in order to decrease your pain. Heat can also help to bring blood and nutrients to the area and therefore increase healing. Heat or heat pads should never be left on for longer than 20 minutes or it can cause other problems like skin damage or swelling. Therefore, most physical therapists would advise you not to use an electrical heating pad to sleep with. Heat is usually used to relax an area so the therapist can work with the area or the patient an exercise with ease. Never use heat on acute conditions. (ie brand new injuries that are painful, red, hot and swollen) The heat will further increase the swelling.

Heat helps to

• Decreases pain
• Relaxes muscle
• Improves circulation
• Improve rate of healing
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