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Does Ice help actual healing? or just pain relief? Please help
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Does Ice help actual healing? or just pain relief? Please help

I have two bulging discs in my back as well as a partial torn rotator cuff.  I've received medical care, as well physical therapy.  My physical therapist had me icing my back and rotator cuff for 10 minutes a day after a workout.  

My question is, does the process of applying ice actually help to 'heal' bulging discs and torn ligaments?  Or is it just providing some temporary pain relief?  It seems to me that Ice would hinder the healing of a bulging disc, expecially considering that discs have low blood flow/oxygen as it is.

I'm curious if someone can provide a straight answer on this.  Thanks.
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I know that ice does help reduce swelling and inflammation in the rotator cuff injuries. I'm assuming it would do the same in the neck. Just my best guess from having shoulder surgery myself, and being frozen to an icecube afterwards during PT!!!
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358304_tn?1409713092
My chiropractor said that ICE is the key... not heat... i never understood it... but it helped my pulled out back last year...

now im suffering from a sore/stiff neck (for about 4 days) and have only used ice once...
i guess i should give it a try... but you think that ice would make my neck want to tense up more from the cold right? lol.
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Avatar_f_tn
The ice reduces the blood flow so that reduces the pressure on the affected area. That is what causes the swelling and inflamation (inflammation), blood pressure. The inflamation (inflammation) hinders the healing process.
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Avatar_m_tn
birdie0907,

Thanks for responding, what is your source for that?

And do you think that still holds true 6-8 months after an injury has occured?
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Avatar_f_tn
My source is a physiotherapist + a nurse + some sports people.

If you have shin splints from standing at a job, you can ice them down afterward and get quick relief. So any injury pain can benefit from the inflammation reduction. An old or new injury is all the same to the pain sensors, they don't like inflammation.
I don't think chilling it will do anything positive for arthritis, but am just guessing. I had pain in my wrist and the physio said it might be arthritis. Arthritis likes me to be active in order to settle down, contrary to the sharp pain messages it gives me when I lift wrist weights. After a few days of the exercise it never hurts again until I stop exercising.

You can ask a pharmacist about your condition and treatments if you can't afford a paid professional's advice, but definitely see a pro about your situation as they can properly diagnose you.
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