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Best ice gel packs for sciatica pain relief - Buying Guide: 2022

Sciatic back pain is one of the most uncomfortable pains a person can experience. Those who have suffered from it describe it as a pain that starts in the lower back and spreads to the thighs, legs and feet. It is called "sciatica" because it is caused by inflammation of the sciatic nerve, which follows the same path.

This condition has several causes and treatment should aim to correct the main cause of sciatica. However, there are simple, non-surgical solutions to relieve the pain, such as heat and cold therapies.

What is the best ice gel pack for sciatica pain?

Magic Gel - Hot and cold gel packs for back injuries
  • Material: Nylon
  • Uses: Lower back
  • Type of adjustment: Velcro strap
  • Cover: Yes
  • No. of units: 1 Gel Pack
  • Velcro strap
  • 1 Gel Pack
  • Hot/cold therapy
  • Fully adjustable
  • Little flexibility with cold therapy
  • Not microwaveable
The Magic Gel for men and women is ideal for adjusting the lower spine and generating the necessary temperature to produce a relaxing effect on the muscles. This last benefit is due to the results delivered by thermotherapy and cold therapy directly on the affected area. Its ergonomic design is recommended to combat symptoms of low back pain, herniated discs and inflammation of the sciatic nerve.

The ice and heat packs are removable and can be placed in the refrigerator or microwave, depending on the therapeutic benefit you are looking for. The neoprene sleeve is flexible and does not deform during use, which aids in better adaptation to the tender points of the lumbar region. Please note that, in some patients, the support was not ideal to stabilize the joint.

Rester's Choice - Hot and Cold Gel Pack for Sports Injuries
  • Material: Nylon
  • Uses: Various body areas
  • Type of adjustment: None
  • Cover: Yes
  • No. of units: 1 Gel Pack
  • Hot/cold therapy
  • Suitable for various body areas
  • Not microwaveable
With a Rester's Choice hot and cold gel pack you are going to get just the right temperature to stimulate muscle relaxation and oxygenate the tissues. This will make bursitis, arthritis and low back pain go away faster because the thermal wrap can be easily applied in cold therapy and thermotherapy. Its design, divided into capsules, with strong seams allows a correct support in sensitive areas, which also helps vasodilatation.

You will find great benefits in this pad, for example, the ease in achieving the desired therapeutic temperature. Just place in the microwave for a few seconds or chill in the refrigerator for at least two hours and that's it! Its design does not deform, which helps to a better adaptation in women and men, but too hot peel can cause skin burns.

NatraCure - Gel pack with special large sleeve for back pains
  • Material: Nylon
  • Uses: Back
  • Type of adjustment: None
  • Cover: Yes
  • No. of units: 1 Gel Pack
  • Large size
  • Suitable for various body areas
  • Cold therapy only
The technology used in the FlexiKold cold pack helps to maintain the temperature for a longer period of time, which will help you generate greater results in the lumbar region of the back. You can apply cold therapy and thermotherapy to achieve combined benefits and thus, shorten the recovery time of the region.

It is recommended to be used for arthritis, sciatica and menstrual pain, although you can also use it to relax the shoulder muscles, due to the extra large size of the thermal blanket. Its structure does not deform with use and, thanks to the quality of the seams and materials, it is not uncomfortable during therapeutic sessions. It has the advantage of being able to be used anywhere on the body, but it does not generate compression, since it does not have adjustable straps.

ROLIAT - Reusable gel packs with heat and cold therapy for sciatica pain
  • Material: Nylon
  • Uses: Lower back
  • Type of adjustment: Velcro strap
  • Cover: Yes
  • No. of units: 1 Gel Packs
  • Adjustable Velcro strap
  • Includes 1 Gel Pack
  • Hot/cold therapy
  • Quality finishes
  • Delicate wash
  • Not microwave safe
The ROLIAT flexible support will help you to use the hot and cold thermal gel packs. Its ergonomic design and Velcro straps will generate the necessary compression to stabilize the hip joint and improve blood circulation. In addition, thermotherapy and cryotherapy will relax the muscle structure and soothe inflammation generated by sports disorders, arthritis and menstrual periods.

The size encompasses strategic areas of the hip, which enhances dilation and helps facilitate ease of use. Freeze in the refrigerator and microwave the removable pouches to place on your back for pain relief. You won't need anyone's help because its ergonomic design will easily adapt to your anatomy. In some cases, the Velcro loses quality after a few weeks of use.

RAKZU - Extra large reusable gel pack for cold therapy
  • Material: Nylon
  • Uses: Back
  • Type of adjustment: Velcro strap
  • Cover: Yes
  • No. of units: 1 Gel Pack
  • Velcro strap for better fit
  • Hot/cold therapy
  • Little flexibility when frozen
Don't miss sports training or your daily activities because of back pain. You can recover much faster from low back pain and sciatic inflammation with a RAKZU reusable gel pack. The materials chosen for the structure and its soft cover make the difference over other thermal products, as they are highly durable and easily adaptable to both women and men.

Its soft material cover improves comfort and the adjustable straps generate pressure in sensitive areas. Thanks to these benefits you will get faster results from a back surgery recovery. The temperature for hot and cold therapy will be achieved by using the microwave and refrigerator for the recommended time, but be careful because the gel may spill if you overheat.

REVIX - Large gel ice pack for back pain relief
  • Material: Nylon
  • Uses: Back, Leg, Arm
  • Type of adjustment: Strap with Velcro
  • Cover: Yes
  • No. of units: 1 Gel Pack
  • Velcro strap for optimal fit
  • Extra large size
  • Long lasting cold therapy
  • Suitable for various body areas
  • Edges to be improved
  • Not suitable for heat therapy
Take care of your quality of life and always keep your hip muscles relaxed with a REVIX thermal bag with ice gel. As it has a greater coverage, the cold stays longer in the blanket achieving better results in all inflamed tissues. You can use this product with or without adjustable Velcro straps, so it can also be used on the knee and leg.

The flexible structure adapts to the back of women and men, making it a versatile product to treat menstrual symptoms, herniated discs and lower back muscle pulls. Place the thermal bag in the refrigerator for about two hours until the desired temperature is reached and then apply several times a day to reduce swelling and relieve pain. Consider that, in some cases, the quality of the material may heat up quickly after removing it from the freezer.

The Coldest Water - Flexible gel and wrap with elastic straps specific for cold therapy
  • Material: Nylon
  • Uses: Back, Leg, Arm
  • Type of adjustment: Strap with Velcro
  • Cover: Yes
  • No. of units: 1 Gel Pack
  • Suitable for various body areas
  • Long lasting cold therapy
  • Not suitable for heat therapy
The Coldest Water unisex ice pack is useful for deflating bruises, relieving arthritis pain and improving symptoms of sciatica and low back pain. This is due to the coverage area and adjustable straps that its design has. Thanks to the innovative style, faster recovery from sports disorders, trauma and surgery is possible. By simply placing a few hours in the refrigerator, you will achieve excellent results without spending money.

The cold therapy will serve you for a more effective blood circulation that helps to eliminate toxic substances from the muscle fibers. You can also use this heating pad for menstrual cramps, making it a high quality and versatile product for treating a wide range of conditions. You can use it at work or when resting at home, but keep in mind that its material is not breathable and tends to accumulate moisture.

Med 55 - Gel and wrap package with 2 adjustable straps
  • Material: Nylon
  • Uses: Back, Leg, Arm
  • Type of adjustment: 2 Velcro straps
  • Cover: Yes
  • No. of units: 1 Gel Pack
  • Double strap for optimal fit
  • Suitable for various body areas
  • Short duration cold therapy
In one product you can get 3 different types of therapy to relieve pain and reduce inflammation of the hip. Thanks to the technology applied in the Med 55 flexible pack, you can effectively use compression therapy, thermotherapy and cold therapy. Just choose to place it in the microwave or refrigerator and then adjust its two Velcro straps to stabilize the pelvic area.

It is suitable for treating symptoms of low back pain, herniated discs, inflammation of the ovaries, so it can be used by women and men alike. Its structure does not deform with use and its quality of materials, durable and washable, prolongs its useful life. In some cases, the postures began to detach and spill the medical gel during cooling.

Video: How to use hot and cold gel packs?

Types of hot & cold packs you should know about

What are the causes of pain due to inflammation of the sciatic nerve?

First of all, it is important to know that the term sciatica only refers to a set of painful symptoms. It does not refer to a specific disease, but to the inflammation of a nerve. This is the sciatic nerve, the longest and thickest nerve in the human body.

Clinically, sciatica is characterised by severe pain, numbness and tingling in the lower limbs. It is characterised by extending from the lumbar region to the back of the buttocks, thigh, leg and foot. The intensity of the pain can vary and is usually unilateral, i.e. it occurs on one side of the body.

Symptoms

Commonly described symptoms include the following:

  • Constant pain: This manifests itself as a constant and intense pain that only occurs in one buttock or buttock area, as it is rarely present in both. This pain can be made worse by sitting, coughing or sneezing.
  • Tingling or burning: Many people describe a tingling sensation throughout the leg.
  • Loss of sensation: this usually occurs when the sufferer touches the back of the leg and finds that they no longer have sensation when touched.
  • Muscle spasm: This is felt as a painful contraction of the leg muscles.
  • Muscle weakness: if the neuritis has become a chronic problem, it can lead to muscle weakness.

Causes

The onset of sciatica back pain is usually due to several factors. However, the most common causes are:

  • Herniated discs: the main cause of sciatic nerve pain. The intervertebral discs are rubbery rings that lie between the vertebrae and cushion the movements of the spine. When the disc protrudes, tears or bulges, it causes inflammation of the nerves and adjacent tissues.
  • Spinal stenosis: The spinal canal, the opening through which the spinal cord passes, is narrowed. This causes compression of the sciatic nerve roots and is caused by bone spurs, herniated discs, inflammation and other causes.
  • Piriformis syndrome: The name is derived from the piriformis muscle. In about 15% of the population, the sciatic nerve runs through the piriformis muscle. Cramps, trauma or overuse cause the muscle to shorten and cause compression or entrapment of the sciatic nerve.
  • Trauma: Any trauma can cause direct compression of the sciatic nerve. An impact can injure the nerve pathway or break the bones of the spine and cause further compression of the nerve.

There are also risk factors that cause sciatica to occur or make the direct causes worse:

  • Age-related changes: The spine undergoes age-related changes over the years. These are closely related to the activities the person has done for most of their life. Changes occur as a result of osteoarthritis, spinal and herniated discs, and scoliosis or kyphosis.
  • Obesity: Being overweight increases the stress on the lumbar vertebrae and causes nerve compression.
  • Work habits: Jobs or occupations that require excessive lifting or staying in awkward positions cause greater damage to the spine.
  • Lack of exercise: Sitting for long periods of time or lack of exercise leads to sciatica. It is believed that the less you exercise, the weaker your back muscles become. This weakness causes instability of the vertebrae in the spine.
  • Diabetes: Diabetes causes what is called peripheral neuropathy. This condition is caused by a high level of glucose in the blood, which leads to nerve damage.

Which is more effective in relieving sciatic back pain: heat or cold?

Heat and cold have been shown to be very useful for sciatic back pain. Some people have had very good results with cold in the first week. Others have chosen heat because it causes greater relaxation of muscles, ligaments and tendons.

Advantages of cold

Physiotherapists recommend the use of cold in the early stages of sciatic back pain. Cold is considered one of the best painkillers and anti-inflammatories and is therefore one of the best options.

Therefore, it is important to know its effect on the tissues and understand why it brings the following benefits:

  • Anti-inflammatory effect: When there is inflammation in any part of the body, there is an increase in blood flow in response to repairing the damage. The cold creates vasoconstriction in the tissues of the lumbar spine, which leads to a reduction in blood flow. This slows the release of pro-inflammatory and reparative substances, thus preventing inflammation.
  • Pain-relieving effect: Cold has the effect of reducing nerve conduction in the peripheral sensory nerves. This significantly reduces the severe pain caused by sciatica.
  • Stimulates muscle function: A short application of cold stimulates muscle function and reduces osteotendinous reflexes and stiffness.

It is important to remember that the application of cold to the spine must be done with great care. Very prolonged exposure to cold should be avoided as it can lead to nervous system problems. Excessive cold slows down the speed of nerve conduction and leads to poor motor performance.

Advantages of heat

Heat also offers many benefits for sciatic back pain. By improving blood flow to the tissues, it speeds up the improvement of the tissues and pain. Like cold, it is very easy to apply.

The most notable benefits of heat or thermotherapy on the sciatic nerve include:

  • Relaxing effect on muscles, ligaments and tendons: Heat causes a change in the physical properties of muscle tissue, tendons and ligaments. This means that they can relax and stretch better during the cramps that occur with sciatica.
  • Pain-relieving effect: The heat causes vasodilation in the tissues, which leads to an increase in blood flow. This blood flow brings more oxygen and nutrients to the tissues, which allows for faster recovery. This significantly reduces pain.
  • Resorption effect of oedema and inflammatory infiltrates: In addition to pain relief, the increased blood flow allows the diseased tissue to heal more quickly. This leads to the resorption of exudates, oedemas and inflammatory infiltrates.

The application of heat also requires care and caution. The application of compresses or gel packs should not exceed a very high temperature, i.e. they should not burn. It is very easy to notice when the temperature is exceeded, if the heat causes discomfort, it is not appropriate.

How do you use hot & cold gel packs to relieve inflammation of the sciatic nerve?

As explained above, heat and cold therapies can be used separately or alternately for sciatica. They can be applied in gel-filled sachets as this is the simplest and easiest way to apply them. Follow the recommendations below for their use:

Cold

Our gel packs are very easy to cool, follow these simple steps for proper application:

  1. Place in the refrigerator or freezer for at least 2 hours.
  2. Check the temperature of the gel pack and remove it when it is at the correct temperature.
  3. Apply to the lower back, avoiding direct contact with the spine and bones. Remember that direct cold on the spinal nerves can cause problems in the nervous system.
  4. Do 10-minute exposures every 2 hours. This should be done within the first 7 days of the onset of pain.
  5. Exposure times of 15 minutes every 15 minutes can also be done for up to 75 or 100 minutes. Both options of exposure time are very useful.
  6. Put the bag back in the freezer after the exposure time is up and wait for the new exposure time.

Hot

Heating our gel packs is very easy, provided you follow the correct timing and procedure. We would like to point out that our gel packs are not suitable for hot use, but they work very well. The easiest way to do this is in the microwave or in a water bath:

If you choose to heat the gel pack in the microwave, follow these recommendations:

  1. Place the gel pack in the microwave and set the power to 800 W for 30 seconds.
  2. After this time, remove the bag and massage it to ensure that all the gel is at the same temperature.
  3. If you feel it is not hot enough after massaging, put it in the microwave again for 10 seconds. If the temperature is too high, you can let it rest for a few minutes before using it.
  4. After the rest period, you can start exposing it for a period of 10 to 15 minutes.
  5. In the first 7 days after the onset of pain, exposure can be every 1-2 hours.

Hot & cold therapy

If individual therapies have not had the desired effect, contrast media can be used. For this you need two gel packs, one for cold and one for heat.

  1. First place the hot gel pack for about 5-8 minutes.
  2. Then put on the cold gel pack for about 2-4 minutes.
  3. Repeat these cycles for at least 20-30 minutes and leave on for 1-2 hours.

These cycles should be repeated for at least 7 days, especially if the sciatica has become chronic. Contrast therapies stimulate the cardiovascular system and the autonomic nervous system and are ideal for tissue rehabilitation. They purify and reduce swelling in the tissues so that they can recover more quickly.

The best hot and cold gel packs for pain relief

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