What Are the Benefits of Cryotherapy for Our Health and Wellbeing?

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(Newswire.net — April 26, 2019) — The use of extreme cold for the treatment of injuries or to reduce recovery time after exercise/sport is not new. However, cryotherapy manages, in a carefully way,  the best elements of cold treatment to promote and improve body healing in many ways. 

This treatment is showing positive results in other fields, beside helping for the recovery of injuries. Among others, reducing the symptoms and discomfort of certain diseases and conditions caused by inflammation. With a solid foundation in science, and being such as a relative simple procedure for the world of health and fitness, an increasing demand of the world population is embracing new technology to carry out cryotherapy’s treatment in order to reach more and more people.

What are the main benefits of cryotherapy

Cryotherapy is gaining a big popularity to treat a wide range of physical ailments, and even though, cold treatments have been around for a long time, as ice application on injuries, when high performance athletes take ice baths, or even cold plunge pools at spas, doctors and therapists are still finding out through research more benefits of this treatment.

What we do already know is that we are starting to see the impacts of cryotherapy on pain relief and promoting healing in muscles, especially where there has been a sport injury.

In fact many of the best sport teams across the world are now including cryotherapy into the injury rehabilitation programs. As a side benefit, it is also showing promising signs of aiding weight loss, combined with healthy lifestyle habits as diet and exercise routines. This due to the need of our body to use more energy than usual to warm itself. Of course, healing properties that allow us to return to fitness are also a benefit when it comes to weight loss.

Initial studies also has shown advances when it comes to a reduction of inflammation, and to alleviate the symptoms of disorders caused by that inflammation. Among others we can mention arthritis and fibromyalgia. 

So, what exactly is cryotherapy?

Most people will likely have heard of similar procedures in sci-fi movies, but the term cryotherapy is related to any type of body treatment which involves  freezing temperatures as a mean to improve health.

It will typically involve stepping into some sort of cryotherapy machine or booth, similar to standing loungers often seen in gyms and beauty salons. The machine will lower the surface temperature of the body slightly near freezing and holding it there for two to four minutes. Obviously, it is not recommended too much time as it can have a detrimental effect on skin tissue. 

In order to maintain safety, the machine carefully manages the temperature and the timing to avoid any damage but still allow the body to reach a state where it begins to naturally respond to the extreme cold. It is this response that provide the benefits of the treatment.

How cold creates a reaction in the body?

Applying cold to body tissue, properly managed by a professional, has great benefits. These due to the body’s natural reaction to cold, already well documented by biologists and health professionals.

When facing with extreme cold the body will release endorphins, giving a feeling of calm and well being. But also produces a vasoconstriction followed by vasodilation.

During vasoconstriction, blood flow is redirected to vital organs and enriched with oxygen from the lungs and many other useful nutrients. When returning to the body normal temperature this enriched blood flows back to the rest of the body promoting healing and regeneration. 

This lead to other body responses. An analgesic effect that helps with acute and chronic pain, an anti-inflammatory effect where extreme cold causes a reduction of hypoperfusion dependent on inflammation. It also makes the nociceptors less sensitive and reduces the mediators of inflammation. 

Finally the metabolism is activated, and in the hours that follow treatment 200-800 kilocalories per hour are burned by the body. With so much endorphin and serotonin produced, it encourages a feeling of well being and relaxation that can help to reduce stress.