How Cryotherapy Can Help Relieve Lower Back Pain

An estimated 80% of Americans will suffer from back pain at some point in their lifetime – that’s over 262 million people living in pain.

Back pain, especially lower back pain, is usually a result of an accident, work strain, or sports injury. It is the most common type of pain and accounts for 264 million lost days of work each year.

But why is back pain so common? Does it have to do with our lifestyle, diet, or a lack of exercise? Whatever the cause of your back pain is, there are several alternative options on the rise which have promising results for back pain relief. 

Learn more about cryotherapy for back pain and how you can find genuine relief, without any unwanted side-effects.

WHAT EXACTLY IS CRYOTHERAPY? 

Cryotherapy is also known as cold therapy. It’s an alternative therapy that can be used for multiple different conditions, including muscle pain, arthritis, and athletic injuries. It involves exposure to freezing temperatures of negative 200–300°F, for short periods at a time, generally 2-4 minutes. 

Cryotherapy is exceptionally versatile because it can target just one specific area of the body or the whole body at once. Whole-body cryotherapy involves standing in an enclosed chamber filled with refrigerated air. 

The benefits of cryotherapy are almost instant for some people, depending on what they’re treating. However, it’s most effective when used as a regular form of therapy, especially in the case of back pain.

A QUICK HISTORY ON COLD THERAPY FOR PAIN RELIEF

Whole-body cryotherapy is a relatively new form of therapy for pain relief. But localized cryotherapy has been practiced by many health professionals and regular folks alike for ages. This includes cold packs, ice packs, and ice baths—these cold therapies work to reduce blood flow to the injured area, which reduces swelling and inflammation. 

Localized cold therapy is usually only used as a short-term solution for pain. It works great for a few minutes to reduce inflammation but does not carry much long-term benefit. 

On the other hand, whole-body cryotherapy offers more long-lasting benefits, including improved mobility and reduced pain levels.   

COLD TEMPERATURES AND HEALING: HOW IT WORKS 

When you have an injury, the body’s natural response is to send blood to the injured area. This surge of blood causes swelling and a rush of inflammatory cells to the injury site. While this helps the injured area heal, it also leads to pain and lack of mobility. 

Over time, if the injury site is not treated, inflammation cells linger, causing restrictions to the joints and muscles, exacerbating pain and immobility. There are usually two practical solutions: heat or ice. But there is usually confusion over which is appropriate and when.

The reason why ice or cold temperatures encourage healing is quite simple: it does not encourage any further blood flow to the area. Heat does the opposite and can worsen inflammation, which is why it shouldn’t be used immediately after an injury. Cold temperatures restrict the blood vessels in the area, thereby reducing swelling.

CRYOTHERAPY FOR BACK PAIN: WHY IT WORKS 

It’s worth noting that cryotherapy for back pain is often combined with other therapies to improve the spine’s overall condition. This may include:

  • Chiropractic adjustments

  • Physiotherapy exercises to improve strength, and range-of-motion

  • Dynamic/mobility stretching

However, cryotherapy offers the most immediate pain relief of all these options, without side-effects. The premise of cryotherapy is to harness the anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties of freezing temperatures to promote healing of injured or inflamed muscles, ligaments, and tendons in the back. 

This is how cryotherapy physiologically affects the body to promote healing: 

  • It promotes both superficial and deep temperature changes within the body 

  • It reduces the rate of blood flow to the injured area of the back 

  • It decreases the production of pain-inducing and inflammatory prostaglandins, lipids that help control blood flow and inflammation at the injury source

  • It helps to regulate the conductive ability of nerve endings in the spine 

  • Cold temperatures encourage the muscle fibers to relax 

When a muscle is injured due to an accident, sports, or work-related injury, it is riddled with micro-tears. The low temperatures of cryotherapy promote the healing of these tears while also reducing pain, discomfort, and swelling. 

To add to this, studies show that cryotherapy encourages a reduction in inflammation due to a change in hormonal and neurotransmitter release. An increase in norepinephrine (NE) production, which has a significant role in regulating the sympathetic nervous system, aids in this process. 

Some of the other stand-out benefits of cryotherapy for back pain management include:

  • A reduced need for pain medications and their negative side-effects 

  • There is very little risk involved, as opposed to other options, like surgery 

  • Whole-body cryotherapy treats many areas of the body at once, improving range-of-motion across the whole of the body, not just your back

  • There are no side-effects and there is no downtime — you can return to everyday life immediately after each session

Aside from this, cryotherapy is also known to boost the immune system. It also decreases your chance of developing further back complications in the future.   

EXPERIENCE THE BENEFITS OF CRYOTHERAPY FOR YOURSELF 

If you’ve been considering cryotherapy for back pain, then now is your chance to try it for yourself and reap the benefits.

The Human Optimization Center offers whole-body cryotherapy sessions for a myriad of conditions. We aim to help you get your pain-free life and health journey back on track. We also provide localized cryotherapy sessions for more targeted problem areas. 

Experience the benefits of cryotherapy, red light therapy, compression therapy, hydro massage, and more! Learn more about our revolutionary services today, or book an appointment

If you’re new to Cryotherapy, we invite you to try a treatment on us! For a limited time, new customers can buy one visit and get two free! That’s 3 Optimization services (full body or localized cryotherapy, red light room, compression therapy or hydromassage) for the price of one! 

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