Why the RICE principle prevents sports injuries from healing

Healing is actually an inflammatory process. Applying ice to reduces swelling actually delays healing by preventing the body from triggering the inflammatory healing response as well as restricting the delivery of vital nutrients to the cells in the injured area. Apart from missing out on the initial healing process you may also experience tissue to die from decreased blood flow as well as permanent nerve damage. Pain killers such as Ibuprofen or Diclofenac do more damage then good. Realise that they are called non-steroidal anti-inflammatory because they block the enzymes that trigger both swelling and pain. Anything that reduces inflammation also delays healing!

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