-Tim Warner, Sports & Fitness, Director of Testing
Top 3 out of 11 Brands We Tested
(Can be Chilled or Heated)
||Best Large Size
(For Large Muscle Injury)
|Pro Ice Cold Therapy Products
||Best for Ankle and Foot
(Helps Plantar Fasciitis)
Do you find yourself suffering through the discomfort of muscle or joint pain? Do you have ongoing lower back, mid back, or shoulder pain? Whether you suffer from chronic pain or are recovering from an injury, a good quality ice pack can help you get through your day. The best quality gel ice packs can also help you reduce muscle pain so that your body can relax and heal.
Ice Pack for Knee
Ice packs are among the most common products used as a treatment in orthopedics. Additionally, ice treatment tends to be used for recent, acute injuries. For example, if your injury or pain occurred in the most recent 48 hours, then ice is what you need.
Ice can help minimize swelling and reduce muscle pain and spasm. Ice packs can also be used for overuse injuries such as those experienced by athletes and people who work in extreme or repetitive conditions. These ongoing injuries are known as chronic injury. Never put ice on a chronic injury before using the injured muscles.
The most common areas of your body that can benefit from ice treatment are:
Be sure that you never apply ice directly to an injury. Using an ice gel pack inserted into a sleeve can help offer a layer of protection between the cold gel pack and your skin. Periodically move the pack to avoid ice burn.
Ice Packs for Athletes
Both ice and heat are commonly used in treating sports and other injuries. Gel ice packs are a great option and often come with adjustable straps that hold the pack in place on your injured area.
Icing your injured areas together with elevation, compression, and support can help you recover from pain. Some doctors will also recommend a course of anti-inflammatory drugs to help reduce swelling.
However, the use of ice and heat is just one element of your recovery. You will also need to restore flexibility to the joints and muscles, increase strength and regain sport-specific skills.
How to Use an Ice Pack
Ice packs are best used on muscle pain that includes swelling and/or muscle spasms such as a swollen knee, muscle strain, deep thigh bruise, neck or back spasm, and pulled shoulders and shoulder tendonitis.
Once you place the ice pack on your injury, the cold temperature will slow down blood flow to the injured area. This, in turn, restricts your blood vessels which eliminate swelling and numbs any pain.
Ice therapy is best used after taking part in a pain-inducing activity and not beforehand. Use your ice pack at least three times a day, for up to one hour each time. Be sure to consult your doctor before starting an icing regime, but generally people experience relief after a 20-to-30 minute session.
Cold Pack vs. Heat Pack
Even the slightest movement can aggravate sore muscles. However, staying still for too long can also cause you pain. Be sure to rest sore muscles and achy joints for no more than 2-3 hours at a time before moving around a bit.
Additionally, WebMD states that many arthritis doctors suggest both heat and cold therapy to help reduce pain and inflammation that comes with arthritis.
Heat dilates your blood vessels and helps stimulate blood circulation which reduces muscle spasms. It also alters your pain sensation to help you relax.
Cold, on the other hand, constricts your blood vessels which reduces swelling and numbs deep pain. At first, cold ice packs can feel uncomfortable, but in the end, they can provide relief.
Ice Pack Review Conclusion
Ice packs, hot water packs and anti-inflammatory medicines can all help reduce pain caused by injury, overused muscles, arthritis, and even migraines. In the end, gel ice packs are a great choice for soothing pain because they are inexpensive, non-invasive and safe. If you need immediate relief for sore, tired, or injured muscles, try an ice pack today to reduce your pain.