Application of Cold
Some people find that they receive more benefit from an application of ice rather than heat. Cold may be especially effective when active inflammation produces severe pain and joint swelling. Only by trying both heat and cold will you find out which is best for you.
Cold applications must be done with caution to avoid skin damage. Use ice with care on any area of your body with poor circulation. DO NOT USE ICE OVER BROKEN OR FRAGILE SKIN. Apply the ice 2-3 times a day for the recommended time listed with each method.
A FlexiCold reusable pack from Cramer may be used. Place a layer of wet toweling between the pack and your skin. DO NOT APPLY DIRECTLY TO SKIN. Apply the ice pack for 15-20 minutes each treatment.
Ice massage may be directly applied to the skin. Fill a disposable cup 3/4 full of water and freeze it. To use, peel off the top half of the cup. Rub the ice over the affected joint in parallel motion covering an adjacent area with each stroke. When you have covered the entire joint, repeat this sequence. At first, your skin will feel cold, then it will ache, then burn and finally it will feel numb. You want to massage to the point of numbness. Smaller joints require 5 to 7 minutes applications; large joints 10 minutes. Be sure to set a time and DO NOT EXCEED 10 MINUTES OR MASSAGE PAST POINT OF NUMBNESS.