Relieving Pain with Gel Packs

March 07, 2019 1 Comment

Relieving Pain with Gel Packs

What is life without a little pain?

It’s difficult--nay, impossible--to go through life without pulling a muscle, suffering a fracture, or getting a bruise. But just because pain is inevitable doesn’t mean there’s nothing you can do about it.

Sometimes all it takes to ease pain and promote faster healing is applying a gel ice pack.

Ever wonder what makes gel ice packs an effective pain relief treatment? In this article, we share everything you need to know about using these products for easing pain and injury.

How Gel Packs Work

Applying gel packs, or cold therapy in general, is a simple yet highly effective method for taking the edge off fresh injuries, aches, and pains. It works by constricting the blood vessels; thus, slowing down the inflammatory process and reducing swelling and redness.

In addition to gel packs, there are other methods for applying cold therapy--from the frozen bag of peas from days gone by, to today’s modern cold therapy treatments that include disposable cold packs and clay packs.

Each type has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. But if you’re looking for something that’s reusable, relatively cheap and widely available, available in various sizes, and can be used for both cold and heat therapy, then gel packs are an excellent choice.

What are Gel Packs Made of

Gel packs, like the ones available on our shop, are made from high-quality, non-toxic materials. Common gel types include hydroxyethyl cellulose, polymer, sodium polyacrylate, or vinyl-coated silica gel. 

IceWraps gel packs, meanwhile, use filtered Canadian water gel and are encased in high-strength, puncture resistant plastic to prevent leakage. This allows the pack to maintain its consistency and temperature for a long time.

How to Use Gel Packs

custom gel pack

Using gel packs is easy. Simply place the pack in the freezer for at least two hours (or overnight for emergency use). Make sure to keep it lying flat so it will easily mold to the injured body part better.

To avoid getting an ice pack burn, limit gel pack application to no more than 15-20 minutes. You can repeat the application several times during the day, but make sure to allow the skin to return to its normal temperature first. Once your skin warms up again, you can re-apply the cold pack.

Take note that cold therapy is generally most helpful when applied during the first 48 hours following an injury, so it’s crucial that you work with it quickly.

Gel packs are also versatile enough to be used for heat therapy. Simply pop it in the microwave for 10-15 seconds to enjoy a warm soothing relief. Don’t forget to wrap the pack with a towel or cloth before applying it on the skin to avoid possible skin damage.

When to Use Gel Packs

Gel packs are mostly intended for acute pain and fresh injuries. These include ligament sprains, muscle strains, bruises, and other sports injuries. They can also help with muscle spasms and various forms of arthritis.

Chronic overuse or tissue fatigue injuries such as tennis elbow, carpal tunnel syndrome, and patellofemoral pain syndrome also respond well to the treatment.

When NOT to Use Gel Packs

Of course, there are certain cases where gel packs may do more damage than good.

  • Do not use gel packs if you have sensory disorders. People with diabetes, for instance, may have lessened sensitivity and not be able to feel when damage is being done.
  • Do not use gel packs on stiff muscles or joints.
  • Do not use gel packs if you have poor circulation.
  • Do not use gel packs if cold therapy hasn’t helped the injury within 48 hours.

Final Thoughts 

When it comes to easing pain and injury, you can do better than grab a bag of frozen vegetables. Gel packs are a great choice because they’re safe, versatile, and effective. Not only do they help relieve pain, but they also reduce the inflammation and speed up the healing process.

Have you tried gel packs? What was your experience? Drop a comment below!

IceWraps 4" Round
(with cloth backing)


IceWraps 3x5 Gel Pack


IceWraps 3x3 Mini Gel Pack


1 Response

Walter Chapman
Walter Chapman

May 07, 2019

Nice blog. You have conducted thorough research and written a great post. Looking forward to seeing you soon in a new post. Great job and keep up the good work.

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