All About 10 Captivating Cryotherapy Benefits

Have you ever wondered the cold temperature can bring a positive change in your body? And yeah, it is all about the cryotherapy benefits1 that I referred to. Let us now look at the types, benefits, and a few side effects of cryotherapy.

All About Cryotherapy

Cryotherapy is the process of exhibiting the body to extremely cold temperatures for certain minutes. It also means cold therapy2, which is a very natural use of lower temperatures to handle various tissue damage.

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It is used to soothe muscle pains, and swellings after tissue destruction. Cryotherapy limits the temperature of the tissue surface to lessen the hypoxic cell death, muscle spasms, and edema accumulation, together with which typically alleviates discomfort and inflammation.

It falls under the application of immersion in ice baths, or the scrubbing of the ice packs, cold water immersion, ice massage, and coolant sprays, commonly referred to as cold therapy.

Getting into the details, in this Cryotherapy, there is an individual, tube-shaped chamber that encloses the entire body of a person with an open top to rest your head.

The chamber gets you to a deeper degree of temperature, and your head above the chamber remains at room warmth.

In addition to this, Cryotherapy to the entire body is in use. There are two methods in this whole-body cryotherapy: liquid nitrogen and the other is refrigerating cold air.

In this exposure, the temperature is set below 100 degrees Celsius for two to four minutes. People undergoing this therapy are advised to wear minimal clothing, a woollen headband covering ears, a pair of gloves to give warmth to their hands, a mouth mask to conceal both nose and mouth and a pair of dry shoes and socks. Make sure that you are in dry clothing; wet clothing and sweat can lead to frostbite.

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Types of cryotherapy:

There few types of cryotherapy based on the way there are treated. They are:

1. Whole Body Cryotherapy(WBC):

Whole-body cryotherapy involves exposing the body to vapours that reach ultra-low temperatures ranging from minus 200 to minus 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Those who choose to have a WBC treatment are enclosed in relatively confined spaces, typically for two to four minutes, in one of two ways:

2. Partial Body Cryotherapy:

In a nitrogen-based, Partial Body Cryotherapy system3, liquid nitrogen is used to cool a cylindrical-shaped chamber. In this situation, nitrogen gas enters the tank at -150 to -200 degrees, cooling the body from the feet up.

3. Localized Cryotherapy:

It takes a strong chance to minimize the soreness in some parts of the body, such as the mouth and lips.

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4. Cryosurgery:

It is one of the special and minimally invasive surgical processes4. It directly targets the infected cell by using the cold probe to kill the cancerous or infected cells in the body. It works better in the kidneys and the prostate.

5. Internal Cryotherapy:

The experts use freezing techniques and agents to treat a particular internal body part. There are again types in this, based on the illness used to treat. They are cryotherapy for the prostate, cervical cryotherapy, cryotherapy for the lungs, and cryotherapy for heart surgery.

6. Ice Pack Therapy:

Ice pack therapy is a cold therapy performed on an injured part of the body. A pack of ice is placed on the injured part to take the wound’s heat.

This process results to gain relief from the pain. This is mostly practiced in minor injuries and soreness of the muscles. Sportspeople are in very extensive use of it.

However, it should be practiced for a maximum period of 10 minutes to avoid its decreasing performance.

7. Instant Ice Pack Therapy:

In this medication process, there are two bags where the outer bag consists of water and the inner bag of ammonium nitrate.

When the outer bag with ammonium nitrate is squeezed, the inner bag with water breaks and the ammonium nitrate in the outer bag gets dissolved with the water from the inner bag.

Ultimately, the resultant endothermic reaction reaps heat from the surroundings and drops the temperature of the ice pack. Sportspersons most commonly utilize this.

Cryotherapy benefits

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Jacob Lund on Shutterstock

1. Reduces Migraine Symptoms:

Migraine, being a painful trauma, is tough to handle and operate as well. A person with a migraine is so bothered since it is not surely cured. Here cryotherapy helps in degrading the symptoms causing the migraine.

It cools and numbs the nerves in the neck area. Generally, it is said that wrapping the neck to the carotid arteries with ice packs can gradually demote pain.

In that case, cryotherapy is the best way since the cooling effect is all around the body, at the neck region. This is one of the cryotherapy benefits.

2. Numbs Nerve Irritation:

Another cryotherapy benefit is here. It is so prevalent that athletes usually get affected by a lot of injuries. The nerves around the infected area irritate so severely that the person bearing it gets out of control.

To cure and heal wounds, we use cryotherapy since exposure to the cold atmosphere acts as a very good source to calm down the irritated nerve.

Once this is done, doctors treat this by inserting a probe approaching the affected tissue, and then, this pinches the nerves, which eventually acutes the injuries. Thereafter, the ache lessens with the medication and gives pain relief.

3. Weight Loss:

To all those fitness freaks, here is a piece of great news, a cryotherapy benefit. Cryotherapy contributes its effort to help people lose weight. Of course, cryotherapy alone cannot cause weight loss, but for sure, it supports the process.

When a body switches its nature to cold, it motivates the body to work harder to attain warmth. That few minutes of chillness can upgrade the metabolism all day.

As we know, cryotherapy helps us heal muscle pain; those affected can come out of it and perform their fitness routine as usual.

4. Reduces Anxiety and Depression:

This generation is seriously fighting against anxiety and depression. Due to the heavy workload, and packed schedules, people are getting triggered by this imbalance of mental health.

According to a few studies, it is found that the cryotherapy technique is curing 50 percent of symptoms regarding this imbalance of mental health.

Statistics show a variation between those who are treated and those who are not. This is one such stress-revealing cryotherapy benefit.

5. Improves Immunity:

Whole Body Cryotherapy has shown major changes with the improvement in the immune system. It is practically seen with the increase in white blood cells especially, lymphocytes and monocytes, and interleukin-6.

This interleukin-6 has a protein that has both pro and anti-inflammatory effects. That improvement in immunity has set this into cryotherapy benefits.

6. Fibromyalgia:

These days have been regular workdays with a lot of pressure. The workload has brought insomnia, tiredness, and pain in the muscles.

This disorder of muscle cramps, pain in the bones, sleeping difficulties, and fatigue are commonly referred to as Fibromyalgia. There are many ways to treat this.

Suppose half of the people are choosing the medication plans, while the rest are going with the whole body cryotherapy. And cryotherapy has shown the best results in curing the issue and improving the patient’s way of living, because of which it has been into cryotherapy benefits.

7. Gets You Out of Atopic Dermatitis and Other Skin Disorders:

Atopic dermatitis5 is a skin disease that had symptoms of itchy and dryness over the skin. This is a chronic inflammatory skin ailment. This inflammation can be controlled by treating the patient with cryotherapy.

As we know, cryotherapy can raise the antioxidant levels in the blood; this can help the patient to get out and reduce inflammation.

8. Rheumatic Diseases:

Rheumatic diseases cause chronic pain and inflammation in joints and muscles. A well-known rheumatic disease is rheumatoid arthritis. Whole Body Cryotherapy can bring a major change in a patient’s condition.

It reduced the pain in the joints and muscles and even diluted the need for medication in a few sufferers. It improved the victim’s functionality and well-being.

It calmed down the inflammation,n and the disease activity has lessened its effect. After all these pros, the development in patients’ mobility has vigorously increased. This is another notable cryotherapy benefit.

9. May Help Treat Low-Risk Tumors:

It is used to treat low-risk tumours for certain cancer. When we take this cryotherapy treatment, it works by freezing cancer cells and surrounding them with ice crystals.

10. Multiple Sclerosis Symptoms:

Multiple sclerosis symptoms include weak muscles, numbness, mood changes, painful spasms, depression, dizziness, fatigue, and insomnia. With the medication of cryotherapy, oxidative stress gets reduced.

After a few cryotherapy sessions, people with higher fatigue levels and multiple sclerosis symptoms6 got down to the least.

Side effects:

Apart from the benefits, one must also know the side effects of cryotherapy:

1. Blood Pressure and Heart Function:

In a few young male participants, it is noted that their blood pressure got raised after each session of cryotherapy. And there is a downfall in the heart rate.

One thing that is to be considered, there is no long-term effect caused by cryotherapy, but people with heart issues are insisted to be cautious with cold chamber exposure.

It is even said that few people faced big cardiovascular changes, but they were inconsistent though. Here, it is advised people with cardiovascular conditions be cautious against whole-body cryotherapy.

2. Breathing Difficulties:

Soon after Whole Body Cryotherapy treatment, they noticed a decrease in breath rate in a few other people.

Those who hold some breathing issues are recommended to be cautious with whole-body cryotherapy.

Apart from all the cryotherapy benefits and cons, before you get to take a cryotherapy treatment, make sure you take medical advice and consult an expert.

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Frequently asked questions:

Q. Is cryotherapy risky?

  • Besides changes in vital signs, whole-body cryotherapy can have other serious risks. These include major skin damage, such as frostbite, burns, and frozen limbs. A frozen limb is a severe type of frostbite. It causes skin blisters, swelling, and third-degree burns after warming back up.

Q. Is cryotherapy safe on the face?

  • Cryotherapy facials are generally considered to be incredibly safe, but in rare cases, complications have arisen. Some of these potential risks and side effects include numbness or tingling of the face, temporary skin discoloration, ice burn, and in incredibly rare instances frostbite.

Q. Who should avoid cryotherapy?

  • Pregnant women, children, people with severe high blood pressure, and people with heart conditions should not try cryotherapy. Having a cryotherapy treatment for any longer than a few minutes can be fatal

Q. How much does cryotherapy cost?

  • Based on a national average, you can expect to pay between $60 to $100 for your first Cryotherapy session. If you enjoy it, you may be able to purchase a package that offers a number of sessions at a discounted price.

Also read, Side Effects of Sea Moss

  1. Wilke, Bronwyn, and Richard D. Weiner. “Postoperative cryotherapy: risks versus benefits of continuous-flow cryotherapy units.” Clinics in podiatric medicine and surgery 20.2 (2003): 307-322. ↩︎
  2. Ernst, Edzard, and Veronika Fialka. “Ice freezes pain? A review of the clinical effectiveness of analgesic cold therapy.” Journal of pain and symptom management 9.1 (1994): 56-59. ↩︎
  3. Bouzigon, Romain, et al. “Whole-and partial-body cryostimulation/cryotherapy: Current technologies and practical applications.” Journal of Thermal Biology 61 (2016): 67-81. ↩︎
  4. Nyangoh Timoh, Krystel, et al. “A systematic review of annotation for surgical process model analysis in minimally invasive surgery based on video.” Surgical endoscopy 37.6 (2023): 4298-4314. ↩︎
  5. Spergel, Jonathan M., and Amy S. Paller. “Atopic dermatitis and the atopic march.” Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology 112.6 (2003): S118-S127. ↩︎
  6. Nyangoh Timoh, Krystel, et al. “A systematic review of annotation for surgical process model analysis in minimally invasive surgery based on video.” Surgical endoscopy 37.6 (2023): 4298-4314. ↩︎

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