Ice and Heat for Physical Healing

Ice and heat are a healing method often used in most physical therapy treatments for patients. According to OSR Physical therapy, ice and heat, techniques referred to as cryotherapy and thermotherapy, are approaches to help limit muscle swelling, pain, and tension relief. Ice and heat can be used in combinations or separately depending on the injury and severity of your doctor’s diagnoses.

Ice Curing

It is advised to use ice during the initial stage of an injury (48-72 hours), which doctors refer to as an acute injury. Dr. Joseph Mercola elaborates in his article, “Ice works for injuries because it narrows your blood vessels, which helps prevent blood from accumulating at the site of injury, which will add to inflammation and swelling while delaying healing.” Effective use of ice can come from gel packs, ice wraps or direct ice that is wrapped in a towel or even placed in the traditional Ziploc bag. A popular injury treatment acronym to go by is R.I.C.E., which means rest, ice, compress, and elevate.

Heat Healing

Normally, is used to relax those tight and stiffs muscles or joints. The goal is to make those tissues more soft and limber to prevent further hard tears or new injuries. It is ideal to use heat before a workout, daily stretching, or any physical activity and avoid heat to any swollen injuries. Orthopedic Surgery Associates clarifies, “Moist heat is more effective than dry heat as it penetrates deeper and has a better effect on muscles, joints, and soft tissue.” Examples of moist heat could be a hot soaked towel, hot tubs or heating packs.

It is important to not over treat with heat, given that heat increases your blood flow and can cause extra swelling. Also, keep in mind, ice left too long on the skin can result in frostbite or other parts of the body becoming injured as well. If the injury has worsened or unimproved after consistent treatment, contact a medical professional to provide you with a custom treatment plan for your particular injury.

National Physical Therapy Awareness Month!

The month of October celebrates the great opportunities and benefits offered by Physical Therapy (PT). The American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) encourages people to “Get involved and urge people to choose physical therapy to improve mobility, manage pain and other chronic conditions, recover from injury, and prevent future injury and chronic disease.”

To be included in the movement and all the PT fun this month, APTA offers various ways to contribute, such as:

  • Help spread knowledge about the public about the great benefits of PT.
  • Lend a helping hand on October 12, which is PT Day of Service
  • Visit the APTA website to access great articles and information about PT.

Different settings of PT 

Physical therapy is designed to provide unique and custom treatment techniques to relieve pain and heal injuries for specific patients. Here are just some of the various settings where Physical Therapists can specialize in optimizing patient outcomes:

  • Orthopedics focus is on diagnoses related to the musculoskeletal system
    • Occupational Health focus is on promoting a healthy and productive workforce
  • Neurological focus is on any injury or impairment to the nervous system, such as the brain or spinal cord, where motor and sensory function can be affected.
  • Cardiopulmonary focus is on any heart or lung-related ailments

At Nova Medical Centers, we pride ourselves on being a premier Occupational Health provider through our constant pursuit of clinical excellence with our comprehensive approach. Our treatment philosophy is based on current research and clinical practice guidelines and is intended to promote exceptional patient outcomes, improve patient function, reduce the risk of re-injury, and promote a stay at work or full return to work.

For more information about physical therapy or if you can’t decide which option is best for you, visit the American Physical Therapy Association website, along with seeking out to a certified medical professional. Happy National PT Month!

Find out more about the Nova Medical Centers Physical Therapy Department on our website.


Having to pay for a gym membership can get pretty pricey, especially if you’re not attending. What if you could just work out at home or the park? Well, I want to introduce you to calisthenics, a type of workout routine that uses your body as the weight. You can do this almost anywhere you have space, and it’s a lot easier than you think. One great advantage that Calisthenics have overweight lifting according to is “Calisthenics involves using the entire body and not emphasizing certain muscles over others.” Here are some of the workouts you can do without lifting weights.

Upper body:

Push-ups – Push-ups are one of the most popular routines you can do. Push-ups involve being parallel to the floor, arms should width apart, and declining your body back to inclining to the rest position. Push-ups focus on the chest and shoulders. If you’re starting off, try doing 3X10 and as you get better, add 5 more pushups for every set. This will ensure you’re intensifying your routine as you get stronger.

Pull-ups – Pull-ups can be pretty tricky and are one of the hardest routines to perform. Although, this one of the best routines to build arm strength, stamina, and back. Check out your neighborhood park and find some monkey bars. If none available, you can buy a pull-up bar for your door for about $20. If you’re new to pull-ups try 3X3 and add 3 for every time you get better. Soon enough, you’ll be a pull-up master.

Triceps dip – Don’t forget those triceps! Tricep dips consist of an object, like your couch or chair. First, you face away from the object, take a few steps forward; set your hand on the object while declining your legs in front of you. You then bend your arms down and spring back up to the rest position. Perform 3X10 and add 5 as you get the jiffs of it.

Lower body:

Squats – Never skip leg day, never! Squats are a very effective way to gain strength in your quads and glutes and are very easy to perform. All you do is stand up straight, arms out in front of you, and bend your knees until you’re parallel to the floor, then back up. you can 3X15 if starting out then adding 5 more as you begin to progress.

Lunges – Lunges are quite simple to execute but they sure do pack a punch. To perform this routine, all you do is step one leg out in front of you, bend it and don’t let your knee from your other leg touch the floor. You then interchange each leg and repeat the process. Try doing 3X15 then add 5 as you improve. For more advanced lunges, you can also do it stepping backward.


Sit-ups – The body part that the girls love the most, sit-ups, whether in the gym or not; is still one of the most effective ways to obtain a strong core. All you do is lie down on your back, bend your knees while our feet stay planted on the floor, and lift your v body up while placing your hands behind your head. The trick is to make sure you harden your tummy for better results. Do 3X10 and add 5 to intensify the workout.

Planks – Planks, an enemy for all of those who wish to have rock hard abs, is one of the toughest routines to achieve. However, don’t be feared. Practice and perseverance is the key to getting better. To begin, you lie down on your stomach, legs together, and lift up with your elbows and hold still for 30 seconds to a minute. Try doing three sets and rest for about 30 seconds in between. As you get better, add 10 seconds after every set and no time, you’ll have no shame taking your shirt off at the pool.

Bodyweight workouts are easy, cheap, and show results. If you’re looking to build mass though, then this might not be for you. However, if you want to build strength for your entire body, then this is perfect. Repetition and persistence are key for the best results of any workout. So since you’re knowledgeable about calisthenics, give it a try and see results.

National Physical Therapy Month

Physical therapy plays a critical role in the recovery process of patients who have experienced injury or deformity. Both physicians and patients who have participated in physical therapy know that it is more than just treatment. It is a journey of transformation. American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) established National Physical Therapy Month (NPTM) in 1981 to raise awareness of the life changing benefits it offers to patients. Here are some key facts about National Physical Therapy Month:

  • National Physical Therapy Month is celebrated in October
  • Every year, APTA selects a theme such as lower back pain, posture, balance, fitness and obesity, to be the main focus. This year’s focus is on the #ChoosePT campaign which encourages physical therapist to tout the benefit of choosing physical therapy in lieu of opioid medication
  • A “Day of Service” is designated to give physical therapists an opportunity to engage their communities in activities to promote healthy lifestyles and to spread awareness of the importance of physical therapy
  • Many clinics offer free posture screenings, balance assessments or fun runs
  • 50 Chapter Challenge, Neighborhood blood drives, photo contests, and Miracles Baseball Leagues are some events organized by APTA to make it easier for physicians to get involved during NPTM

Physical therapists deserve recognition for their hard work and dedication to empowering patients to take control of their treatment plans and recovery progress. National Physical Therapy Months allows physicians to spread awareness of the benefits of physical therapy while receiving the appreciation they undeniably earned.

At Nova Medical Centers, our team of highly skilled licensed physical therapy staff is committed to providing the most current treatment to patients. Our program provides one-on-one patient care, which means patients do not share their individual therapy time with multiple patients. We pride ourselves in leading the occupational health industry. Contact us  today for more information about our physical therapy program or any other of our services.

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