Heat therapy (Thermotherapy) & What are the clinical uses of heat?

Heat therapy

The heat therapy is also called thermotherapy , It is the use of the heat in therapy , such as for the pain relief and the health , It can be taken in the form of a hot cloth , hot water bottle , ultrasound , heating pad , the hydrocollator packs , the whirlpool baths , the cordless FIR heat therapy wraps and others .

The heat therapy can be beneficial to those with the arthritis and stiff muscles and the injuries to the deep tissue of the skin , The heat may be an effective self-care treatment for the conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis , The heat therapy is most commonly used for the rehabilitation purposes .

Therapeutic effects of the heat are increasing the extensibility of collagen tissues , decreasing the joint stiffness , reducing the pain , relieving the muscle spasms , reducing the inflammation , the edema .

The heat therapy aids in the post-acute phase of healing and increasing the blood flow , increased blood flow to the affected area provides the proteins, the nutrients & oxygen for better healing.



The moist heat therapy is more effective at the warming tissues than the dry heat because the water transfers the heat more quickly than the air, Moist heat can be used on the abscesses to help drain abscess faster.

Thermal Medicine or the manipulation of the body or the tissue temperature for the treatment of the disease, It can be traced back to the earliest practice of medicine, The heat therapy is useful for the muscle spasms, myalgia, fibromyalgia, contracture & bursitis.

The heat therapy is also used in cancer treatment as well as the effect of the chemotherapy or the radiotherapy, but it is not enough to kill the cancer cells on its own.

Ultrasounds are not absorbed in the homogenous muscle , The heat therapy using hyperthermia that has been used to treat the cancer in combination with ionizing radiation .

The heat therapy is contraindicated in case of the acute injury and bleeding disorders ( because of vasodilation ) , the tissues with a severe lack of sensitivity , scars and in the tissues with inadequate vascular supply .

Thermotherapy consists of application of heat or cold to change the cutaneous , the intra-articular and the core temperature of the soft tissue with the intention of improving the symptoms of certain conditions .

Infrared radiation is a convenient system to heat the parts of our body , The radiation can heat the area directly where the blood capillaries & the neuron terminals are .

The heat has to heat the external layer of the skin and the heat is transferred to the deeper layer by the conduction , Since the heat conduction needs a temperature gradient to proceed that can be safely used (around 42 °C) and it is a lower temperature where warming is needed .

Infrared is the part of the electromagnetic radiation spectrum comprised between 0.78 μm and 1 mm wavelength , IR radiation is more important than the visible radiation for heating our body because we absorb most of it , compared to a strong reflection of visible light .

The heat therapy can be used for the treatment of headaches and migraines , A lot of people who suffer from the chronic headaches also suffer from the tight muscles in their neck and upper back .

To achieve the heat therapy for the headaches , many use microwaveable pads that can often overheat , potentially leading to the injury and lose their heat after a few minutes .

Some new products use the heated water , running through the pads to maintain a constant temperature , allowing the headache sufferers to use hands-free heat therapy in the treatment of their headache pain .

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