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Location

Location 1

101 Hodencamp Rd

suite 103

Thousand Oaks, CA 91360 USA

805-402-7576

Monday:

8:00 am - 12:00 pm

1:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Tuesday:

8:00 am - 12:00 pm

1:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Wednesday:

8:00 am - 12:00 pm

1:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Thursday:

8:00 am - 12:00 pm

1:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Friday:

8:00 am - 12:00 pm

1:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Saturday:

9:00 am - 5:00 pm

Sunday:

9:00 am - 5:00 pm

Should I Use Ice or Heat for Pain?

Heat applied to an ankle

Should you use heat or ice on your painful injury? The best method of solving this important riddle is to assess the nature and source of the pain. Essentially, a new injury, that is, one that you sustained within the last 48 hours, is best treated with ice. Chronic pain, or pain that you have had for a long time, is generally best treated with moist heat. Understanding the mechanisms of injury and the physiological and biochemical causes of pain helps us to differentiate the indications for applying ice or applying moist heat.

The primary rule is that you can never go wrong with applying ice. Ice calms things down and, although an ice application may be uncomfortably cold for a few moments, the overall effect is soothing. Cold decreases local metabolism and constricts small blood vessels (arterioles). Cold reduces nerve conduction velocity, that is, the speed at which nerve impulses are transmitted, and therefore reduces the number of pain signals that reach your brain per unit time. Thus, ice applications provide vasoconstriction, analgesia, and sedation. Ice is indicated for acute musculoskeletal injury, burns, insect bites, bleeding, and snake bites. Ice should not be used for gout, rheumatoid arthritis, Raynaud's phenomenon, history of vascular impairment, and cold allergies. As well, ice should not be used for a patient in a coma.

Moist heat increases local metabolism and dilates small blood vessels. Vasodilation results in increased nutrition, increased activity of white blood cells (phagocytosis), and increased removal of waste (metabolic end-products and damaged cellular structures). Moist heat provides analgesia, sedation, and reduces muscle spasms. Heat is best for chronic pain and muscle spasms. Contraindications to moist heat include acute musculoskeletal injury, area of diminished sensation, acute skin conditions, pregnancy, malignancy, diabetes, encapsulated swelling, hemorrhagic disorders, and suppurative conditions.

Generally, ice applications are used for acute injuries within a 72-hour time frame from the onset of the injury. Acute injury damages local capillaries, causing blood to leak into the spaces between cells and tissues, where it doesn't belong. Such uncontained blood causes pressure on local nerve endings, creating pain. Also, pressure is applied to nearby cells, causing extended injury and possibly cell death. Thus, limiting the amount of blood leaking out of disrupted capillaries is critical in slowing the effects and reducing the impact of musculoskeletal injury. Ice performs this function. Ice reduces swelling, reduces pain, and provides a sedative effect.

When applying ice, it's very important to avoid damaging the skin. Ice packs should always be wrapped in a towel. Ice should rarely be applied directly to the skin. Duration and frequency of ice applications is not an exact science, but a useful guideline is to apply ice for 15 minutes every two hours for a moderately acute injury, using three to four ice applications per day. However, you will know instinctively when the time is right to apply the next ice pack.

Moist heat applications follow similar guidelines. Dry heat should never be used. Moist heat packs should be wrapped in a towel and are applied for 15 minutes every two to three hours, up to several applications per day.

Recovering from injury requires your body to put forth a great deal of effort and requires support from the nerve system, the body's master system. Regular chiropractic care provides great assistance in the process of recovery from an injury. By detecting and correcting spinal misalignments and sources of nerve interference, regular chiropractic care helps ensure optimal functioning of the nerve system. Thus, regular chiropractic care helps facilitate your recovery and helps you return to your full range of activities as quickly as possible.

1McCarberg B, D'Arcy Y: Options in topical therapies in the management of patients with acute pain. Postgrad Med 125(4 Suppl 1):19-24, 2013

2Piana LE, et al: The Cold, Hard Facts of Cryotherapy in Orthopedics. Am J Orthop (Belle Mead NJ) 2018 Sep;47(9). doi: 10.12788/ajo.2018.0075

3Mayer JM, Mooney V: Continuous low-level heat wrap therapy for the prevention and early phase treatment of delayed-onset muscle soreness of the low back: a randomized controlled trial. Arch Phys Med Rehabil 87(10):1310-1317, 2006

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Office Hours

Our Regular Schedule

Primary Location

Monday:

8:00 am-12:00 pm

1:00 pm-6:00 pm

Tuesday:

8:00 am-12:00 pm

1:00 pm-6:00 pm

Wednesday:

8:00 am-12:00 pm

1:00 pm-6:00 pm

Thursday:

8:00 am-12:00 pm

1:00 pm-6:00 pm

Friday:

8:00 am-12:00 pm

1:00 pm-6:00 pm

Saturday:

Closed

Sunday:

Closed

  • "I have been experiencing a lot of pain. After getting treatments here, I have felt a lot better. I highly recommend the treatments. This is the only alternative of surgery and has helped."
    Marie B.
  • "Sharp pain down both back of legs to me feet. All gone after 12 visits!!My wife all her general aches and pains all gone. Carpel tunnel treatment for my hands, tingling almost all gone."
    Jerry N.
  • "I love the approach here with Dr. Rosenthal. They really do promote the well being of the entire body. The services and care offered here are unparalleled. I have a much better awareness of my body and how so many factors go into maintaining a healthy body. I have and will recommend Dr. Rosenthal to anyone looking to better themselves."
    Jason B.
  • "Dr. Rosenthal has been a great help to me and my lower back pain. The thing I appreciate the most is the education I received regarding my body and its condition. They have a wonderful, clean professional and technically advanced facility. I’ve always felt like I was in very capable and knowledgeable hands with Dr. Rosenthal and his staff. I have recommended them to many people and will continue to do so."
    Jeff J.
  • "Dr. Rosenthal and his excellent staff have done a great job getting me back to 100%. The rehab program and thorough weekly visits have me feeling great. Thank you."
    Josh G.
  • "Dr. Rosenthal and his staff are awesome! I came in three weeks ago in tremendous pain. Within a week I was doing 100% better and now I am pain free. Thank you again Dr. Rosenthal"
    Keith P.
  • "It has been a pleasure having Dr. Rosenthal work with me. I work out HARD and I have Scoliosis in the spine. I also had vertigo, tingling in my arms and limited range of motion. Since coming here I have not had vertigo, no tingling and range of motion is much better. I thank and totally appreciate Dr. Rosenthal and staff for feeling good."
    Tom K.
  • "As a martial artist I work out my whole body on a regular basis. With injuries I sustained and constant stress on my body it became difficult to teach and train in the art I love. I came in to get help and after seeing my X-rays, and the way mybody was out of alignment I realized how much help I really need. Now in just three months time my body is in much better alignment, I am feeling so much better and my body is under a lot less stress."
    Alex R.
  • "I first came here after suffering really bad pain in my lower back. It hurt to stand up and even sitting down involved discomfort. I was met by Dr. Rosenthal and in a very professional yet caring way; and after an evaluation, Dr. Rosenthal suggested treatment. I am now in the third week of such a treatment and the improvement has already been immense. I have nothing but gratitude and respect towards Dr. Rosenthal and his team."
    Demi M.
  • "I first came here after a car accident. I was suffering from shoulder, neck and back pain. Dr. Rosenthal and his staff are amazing, helpful and always bring a positive vibe whenever I come in. Now my pain is almost gone and it makes me very excited that I started coming here."
    Jerica A.
  • "When I came here I was extremely stressed, my body was tight and misaligned. After the first month I had major improvements. I am continuing treatment and on a path to total transformation. I have been to many treatment centers in the past and this is by far the best experience."
    Bryan S.
  • "Great results. Wonderful great people! Will definitely recommend to other people."
    Sandra F.
  • "When I first came here I was having headaches and migraines almost daily at a debilitating level. As a student it was really hard to stay focused on schoolwork. After a month of coming here the headaches disappeared. I am sleeping better and have more energy. It completely changed my day to day life and helped to get me back to the things I enjoyed."
    Jenna M.
  • "After years of neck and upper back pain, off and on, I finally feel great. I'm very thankful to Dr .Rosenthal and crew for helping me improve the quality of life. I highly them."
    Kristen F.
  • "I came in not being able to use my right arm due to horrible pain. The treatment was fully explained to me. Everyone is so helpful and warm here. They really care about you as a person and your progress. This is a very happy and wonderful place. My arm is almost back to 100% thanks to all of you."
    Julie T.