Electrical muscle stimulation (EMS), also known as neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES) or electromyostimulation, is the elicitation of muscle contraction using electric impulses. EMS has received increasing attention in the last few years, because it has the potential to serve as: a strength training tool for healthy subjects and athletes; a rehabilitation and preventive tool for partially or totally immobilized patients; a testing tool for evaluating the neural and/or muscular function in vivo; a post-exercise recovery tool for athletes. The impulses are generated by a device and delivered through electrodes on the skin in direct proximity to the muscles to be stimulated. The impulses mimic the action potential coming from the central nervous system, causing the muscles to contract.
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Cryotherapy is an excellent way to reduce inflammation and temporary pain. Ice causes constriction in the veins of the affected tissue, limiting blood flow and acting as an anesthetic. Once the cold compressor is removed, blood will rush back to the affected area providing nutrients that will help with the healing process.
Cryotherapy is often used in the treatment of back and neck pain. It lessens the severity of muscle spasms, reduces pain by causing numbness, and aids in lessening soft tissue damage.
Patients suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, Raynaud's Syndrome, colds or allergic conditions, paralysis, or areas of impaired sensation should not use cryotherapy.