Ice or Heat for Sports Injury
Do you know when to use ice and when to use heat on a sports injury?
Acute and Chronic Injuries
Acute injuries are sudden, sharp, traumatic injuries that occur immediately (or within hours) and cause pain (possibly severe pain). Most often acute injuries result from some sort of impact or trauma such as a fall, sprain, or collision and it's pretty obvious what caused the injury.
Acute injuries also cause common signs and symptoms of injury such as pain, tenderness, redness, skin that is warm to the touch, swelling and inflammation. If you have swelling, you have an acute injury.
Chronic Injuries, on the other hand, can be subtle and slow to develop. They sometimes come and go, and may cause dull pain or soreness. They are often the result of overuse, but sometimes develop when an acute injury is not properly treated and doesn't heal.
Icing an injured body part is an important part of treatment. Icing injuries can be effective for sprains, strains, overuse injuries and bruises.