The Benefits of Heat Therapy

The Benefits of Heat Therapy
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Heat therapy, the use of heat during treatment, is also known by most as thermotherapy. It is just what it sounds like: the use of mild and hot temperatures to help relieve a wide variety of medical conditions and improve overall health. Applying heat to the region increases the flow of blood, taking along proteins and oxygen. The comprehensive benefits of thermal therapy are very prevalent. This therapy approach is excellent for reducing joint tension, reducing pain and inflammation, and alleviating muscle spasms.

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It relieves stress.

Heat therapy may offer relaxation, warmth, and reassurance by eliminating the edge of many forms of body pain. Soreness can come from over-exercise or just a simple workout if the area under exercise has not worked out for a while. Heat therapy will alleviate this pain and soreness by causing muscles to relax. It is also why thermal treatment can also stop muscle spasms.

It relaxes stiff muscles.

Body stiffness can occur for various reasons, one of which is from sleeping in the wrong place. Immobility can lead to a loss of mobility and an unpleasant feeling. Heat therapy can help by offering a clammy, comforting feeling. The combination heating pad and light stretching will relieve the pain of muscle stiffness.

It alleviates physical discomfort.

Heat also tends to increase the flow of blood throughout the body. Increased blood flow can heal wounds faster and help alleviate the discomfort you experience from an acute injury.

It eases stress.

Stress and tension go hand in hand throughout the body. The heat will help to alleviate the stress in these muscles. Heat therapy is known as a fantastic way to relieve pressure by calming the body. The warmth gives the affected area extra comfort and a calming feeling.

The easy way to do heat therapy at home is to use a hot compress. A heating pad works efficiently to provide instant thermal treatment. For you to trigger the heat, start by gently flexing the disk inside the compress. 

It reduces inflammation.

Although cold therapy can numb nerve ends and minimize inflammation, heat therapy can also be a great form of pain relief.

You can use the heat for:

  • Arthritis: Moist heat is known to cause rigid joints to relax and soothe sore muscles.
  • Muscle spasms: Due to its soothing properties, moist heat will minimize and remove painful muscle spasms.
  • Sprains: After swelling of the spur inflammation with ice, heat may help eliminate residual stiffness.
  • Tendinosis: Tendinosis is a form of chronic pain that causes tendons and joints to feel stiff and painful. Heat therapy can help to alleviate these symptoms once you've treated the initial inflammation.

Only make sure to refrain from using heat therapy in inflamed areas since heat can make inflammation worse.

It increases blood flow.

Heat therapy is a superstar when it comes to blood flow. No matter the source, heat rapidly opens up the blood vessels, allowing more blood to flow into the body and through the skin.

Blood flow is critical for a variety of reasons. It provides oxygen and other nutrients to cells while at the same time wiping out waste. Studies revealed that the hot pack induced a "significant" increase in blood flow during application.

The same study also showed that blood flow returned to normal almost instantly after removing the hot pack. It may mean that heat therapy could be easier to manage during self-treatment, unlike other more complicated treatments.

However, if you have heart disease, be sure to consult with your doctor before taking any heat therapy.

It improves sleep.

Heat therapy can significantly improve your sleep, particularly in the form of a hot bath. Many studies say night-time sleep EEG changes after body heating in a hot bath. Researchers investigated the effects of both warm and cool baths on sleep.

Although cool baths had no significant effect on sleep, warm baths yielded substantial increases in:

  • Sleepiness at bedtime.
  • Slow-wave sleep or deep sleep, the sleep stage is associated with physical healing and development, immune system regeneration, and energy recovery.
  • Stage 4 sleep, otherwise known as a rapid eye movement (REM) stage. This stage correlates with the development of memory, learning and helps the improvement of mood.

With these findings in mind, it is clear that heat therapy can significantly improve sleep quality and benefit overall health.

It helps reduce the effects of asthma and allergies.

Although not a replacement for prescription asthma and allergy medicine, steam will help alleviate both conditions' symptoms. Steam would alleviate asthma symptoms such as congestion and inflammation by adding moisture to the airways. However, people living with asthma should be careful to avoid condensation that is too hot—a good, warm steam bath is just perfect.

Other studies suggest inhaling warm steam two to four times a day to alleviate irritation caused by illness or allergies. The steam thins the mucus, making the slime clear out of the nose and the sinuses.

So next time your airways feel closed, congested, or dry, try relaxing in the warm steam of a bath, hot tub, or sauna.

It serves as a form of mental health care.

The benefits of heat therapy go beyond the physical: in patients with depression, hyperthermia, or high body temperature can yield beneficial results.

There are studies whose participants were given two hot baths a week for four weeks, while heating pads gave others the placebo. In only that brief time, participants who received hot baths saw a marked decline in depressive symptoms.

With all these advantages in mind, it is clear that heat therapy can bring a range of tangible benefits to several mental and physical conditions.

You may use a hot tub, sauna, or even a tanning bed to reap the advantages of heat therapy at home.

Suppose you're trying to alleviate pain, increase blood flow, enjoy better sleep, treat asthma and allergies, or minimize depressive symptoms. In that case, heat therapy can be a simple and easy way to treat you.

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