Whole body cryotherapy is a method of cold therapy consisting of single or repeated exposure to extremely cold temperatures.
During a cryotherapy session, the body is engulfed with nontoxic nitrogen gas, which can get down to -220 degrees, inside a specialized chamber for 2 to 3 minutes, bringing the body’s temperature down to about 55 degrees.
Variations of this cold therapy have been used for years to treat musculoskeletal issues, among many other benefits. Cryotherapy can specifically aid chiropractors because both cryotherapy and chiropractic adjustments work to reduce inflammation and diminish pain.
How cryotherapy works
The benefits of cryotherapy stem from the rapid drop in skin surface temperature. The extreme cold triggers the body’s powerful protective mechanisms, sending the blood from the skin surface, muscles and surrounding joint space to the body’s core.
The blood is then restricted inside the cardiovascular system and vital organs in a continuous circuit. This allows the core temperature to stay intact and also enhances blood flow, which supplies the organs with elevated levels of oxygen, nutrients and enzymes.
When the user exits the cryotherapy chamber, the body immediately begins vasodilation, returning blood to the skin’s surface, improving blood supply, and flushing out toxins.
Benefits for chiropractic
Similar to chiropractic treatment, cryotherapy is a traditional therapy for acute and chronic pain. Cryo sessions are noninvasive and partner perfectly with chiropractic adjustments. To capitalize on both, cryotherapy can be easily integrated into any practice as a complementary treatment that adds value to the business’s services.
Studies have shown that cryotherapy can reduce inflammation, diminish pain, ease muscle tension, decrease swelling, slow muscle spasms, boost musculoskeletal recovery, increase blood circulation, and much more.
Just one cryo session will make chiropractic adjustments easier and more effective, heightening the quality of the patient’s visit. Cryo can also serve as a pre- or post-adjustment treatment or help with relief in between appointments.
During adjustments, chiropractors specifically target inflamed joints that can cause muscle spasms and pain; a cryo session will constrict the blood vessels, helping alleviate inflammatory chemicals, and damaged nerve activity. Cryotherapy is the perfect adjunct treatment for chiropractors as it yields the best results and rapid recovery while allowing more time for the chiropractor.
Incorporating cryotherapy into your practice
It is extremely beneficial to offer other modalities in addition to just spinal adjustments. Cryotherapy and chiropractic practice go well hand-in-hand because sessions are quick treatments that are inexpensive to administer, but have a high profit margin.
Cryotherapy will allow for more patient time and simultaneously create successful multiple income streams for your chiropractic practice. This new service will appeal to current patients as an add-on and attract a wider variety of clientele to actively grow your business.
Implementation is simple; chambers have a small, square footprint and can easily share space with other equipment. Cryotherapy will not only diversify your practice, but also add value to create higher-quality treatments and happier, healthier patients.
Keith Scheinberg has a BS in Biology from San Diego State University and received science research grants from Johnson & Johnson and the U.S. military. After graduating from Chapman University School of Law, he started a software and app development company and is currently the president and CEO of Cryo Innovations in Newport Beach, Calif., which manufactures cryotherapy chambers. He can be contacted through cryoinnovations.com.