Ice Is For Corpses, Not Injuries

Ice Is For Corpses, Not Injuries

Set injury aside for a moment and stop to think about the other ways ice has been historically used. Preserving tissues, such as corpses and food, that are in static or stagnant state might come to mind. While ice does cease or delay the decay of such, it’s unable to reverse any existing damage to the tissues. In other words, if you place a bag of ice on a corpse or piece of rotten meat, the corpse will still be deceased and the meat will still be rotten the next day.

As far as injuries go, ice does decrease some of the early inflammation, swelling, and pain of new injuries, but at a high price. Meanwhile, the ice is also freezing local blood vessels and soft tissues and causing them to contract, thereby inhibiting normal circulation being restored to the injured area. The blood and fluids in the area are unable to move and become congealed, hardened, and contracted. This only makes it that much harder, if not impossible, for the fluids and blood to disperse in the future. In fact, there are many cases where iced ankle sprains have retained some degree of swelling for over a year.

Muscles naturally contract to temporarily warm the body when it’s exposed to cold temperatures. This is best evidenced by the shivering effect and the body drawing itself in when muscles contract to naturally warm the body as it’s being exposed to cold elements. Athletes can certainly attest that it’s much more difficult to stretch muscles and much easier to pull or strain muscles when the weather is cold. By what we already know, it only makes logical sense that icing an injured area only causes the muscles, tendons, and ligaments, which are already contracted from the injury, to further contract. The overall effect is a slowing of both the healing process and restoration of normal movement.

Unlike in Western medicine, Chinese medicine also holds the idea that dampness and coldness can penetrate any area of the human body when the vital energy has been jeopardized. This penetration can lead to a difficult to treat arthritic-like pain. The pain typically increases as the weather changes.

Chinese sports medicine has two viable alternatives that work together to speedily reduce inflammation, reduce swelling, and restore the normal circulatory process. Since these alternatives do all this without causing any of the negative effects associated with icing, exactly why ice is still being used to treat injuries remains a baffling mystery. According to Chinese sports medicine, the two alternatives to icing an injury are:

1. Sinew Herbal Ice

The energetically cooling Sinew Herbal Ice contains a cooling herbal poultice that not only speedily reduces inflammation, but also assists the healing of torn soft tissues, such as tendons and muscles, by stimulating the restoration of circulation to the injured area.

2. Acute Sinew Liniment

The Acute Sinew Liniment can be applied using self-massage techniques. It helps to move static blood and fluids from the injured area, thereby reducing inflammation and helping to alleviate pain.

Using the Acute Sinew Liniment and Sinew Herbal Ice together is the ideal method of treating an injury, but if you have nothing else available to you or feel that you must use ice on the injury, then it’s best to only apply it for 10 minutes per hour. Limiting the time of application can help decrease the likelihood of experiencing the negative effects of icing.