Cryotherapy, or cold therapy as it is more simply known, is one of the most effective methods of alleviating soft tissue aches and pains and healing. Cold therapy can aid the healing of musculoskeletal injuries both old and new, and can also help to prevent them.
Cold treatment has an analgesic effect, which means it numbs the tissue. This brings instant relief to the horse. When soft tissue is damaged, the blood vessels leak fluid into the surrounding tissues. This leads to an inflammatory response, leading to swelling and pain. Cooling these tissues at a new injury site causes blood vessels to constrict, limiting the leakage that leads to inflammation. Reducing the temperature of the tissue itself also reduces the metabolic rate helping it to survive.
With an older injury, it’s the return of the blood to the area after the cold is removed that is most useful. The renewed circulation brings a new flurry of white blood cells and natural chemicals to the area that helps destroy dead cells. This cycle of cooling and warming at intervals helps generate a pumping action in the tissue that can encourage and speed healing.
Ice Boots – Icehorse Wraps
Easy to use wraps provide uniform compression and coverage to reduce inflammation and heat from tendons and ligaments. The cold packs stay colder for longer, and they mold to the horse’s legs for maximum coverage.
Hydrotherapy – Activo-Med Cold Water Spa
Large units designed to accommodate the horse in a safe, comfortable way. When the doors are closed, the unit fills with cold water, with or without salt (which has additional benefits).
A spa can be used for tendon and ligament injuries, soft tissue damage, inflammation, hoof related issues, arthritis, concussion and laminitis. When filled with salt water, it can also be used to support natural wound healing, and also helps to further reduce swelling.
For more information on any of the therapies above, please contact the FMBs team on 01494 883433, or email email@example.com.