Clinical studies have found that moist heat therapy, like that produced by Hotteeze Heat Pads, is an effective, non-invasive and drug-free option for the treatment of many health conditions. Heat therapy can provide relief to sufferers of:
Chronic back pain,
Muscle spasms and tight muscles,
Arthritis and joint stiffness,
Endometriosis and period pain,
And a range of other conditions.
How Does it Work?
The application of moist heat helps blood vessels relax and open up, increasing the flow of blood, nutrients and oxygen to the affected area. This relieves pain and helps the area to heal, via the quick regeneration of damaged tissues and the removal of toxins from the area. It also increases the ability of the muscle tendon unit to relax and stretch, thereby easing muscle stiffness and improving joint mobility and flexibility.
The application of heat also switches on heat receptors at the site of pain, which in turn block the effect of the chemical messengers that cause pain to be detected by the body. This means the brain focuses more on the heat and less on the feeling of pain, reducing pain and discomfort (King et al 2006).
Lower Back Pain
According to clinical studies, persons suffering from lower back pain report significant pain relief following the use of continuous, low-level heat therapy, with relief persisting for up to 24 hours after therapy (Steiner et al 2000). Heat therapy has been found to provide greater relief for lower back pain than ice therapy, Naproxen, Ibuprofen and Paracetamol (Denghan & Farahbod 2014; Nadler et al 2002).
Muscle Soreness and Flexibility
Application of moist heat therapy has been shown to help reduce athletic injuries and improve muscle and ligament flexibility (Petrofsky, Laymon & Lee 2003). Heat therapy can increase soft tissue flexibility, tissue blood flow and muscle resistance; improve contraction of smooth muscles and muscles' motor function; and decrease muscle seizures (Szymanski 2001; Kent 2006).
Continuous, low-level heat, applied after exercise, has been found to reduce delayed-onset muscle soreness (Petrofsky 2017; Weingand 1999). Heat therapy following exercise also decreased the amount of muscle strength lost, preserved muscle activity, and prevented elastic tissue damage (Petrosfky 2013; Petrofsky 2015).
Period Pain and Endometriosis
Continuous, low-level heat therapy has been shown to be superior to Paracetamol and Ibuprofen in relieving pain caused by menstrual cramps, reducing tightness and cramping, and significantly decreasing fatigue (Akin et al 2001; Akin et al 2004).
Arthritis and Joint Pain
Moist heat therapy has been found to be effective in alleviating pain, and improving stiffness and gait impairment in patients with knee osteoarthritis, with the effects persisting for at least 6 weeks after application (Seto 2008). Heat application every other day has also been shown to improve the sub-dimensions of quality of life scores of physical function, pain and general health perception of patients with knee osteoarthritis (Yildrim, Ulusory & Bodur 2010).
Patients with wrist pain associated with strains, sprains and osteoarthritis reported greater pain relief following continuous, low-level heat therapy, when compared with a placebo. Pain relief progressively increased with each successive day of therapy, and persisted for two days after therapy was stopped. Patients also experienced a significant increase in grip strength (Michlovitz 2002).
Other Forms of Chronic Pain
Clinical studies have reported the effective use of heat therapy to reduce pain, anxiety, nausea and heart rate in patients suffering from numerous other chronic health conditions. Examples include gallstones (Kober et al 2003a), abdominal pain from renal colic (Kober et al 2003b), pelvic pain from cystitis, urolithiasis, appendicitis, colitis and rectal trauma (Bertalanffy et al 2006).
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