- after an acute injury, immediately, to reduce swelling and decrease pain
- acute injuries: like sprains and dislocations; chronic injuries: like tendonitis; on bruising
- apply ice for about 10 minutes every hour to reduce inflammation -- the first 24 -72 hours are crucial!
- never apply ice directly to the skin and don't leave on for more than 20 minutes
- increases blood flow to help with mobility (good to use heat and a warm-up before activity)
- good for pulled or stiff muscles, or joint issues like arthritis
- not for use right after an injury occurs! wait at least 48 hours before applying heat
- do not leave heat on for longer than 20 minutes
- using crushed ice (or a bag of frozen peas!) will help distribute the cooling more evenly
- freeze water in Dixie cups to use for frozen massage -- warning: keep ice moving to prevent burning the skin
- do not sleep with heating pads on -- could burn the skin with prolonged use!
- use a damp washcloth in the microwave for a heat pack to mold around a joint
monitor injuries and keep a close eye on your body to keep you dancing and healthy!