What is Whole Body Cryotherapy?
Whole Body Cryotherapy (WBC) is a cold therapy treatment method where the skin is exposed to temperatures between -200° F to -250° F for up to three minutes. The method was first used in Japan back in 1978 for treating rheumatic disease. Since then, numerous studies have been conducted and have shown that cryotherapy is a powerful treatment for reducing inflammation and pain symptoms associated with a wide range of chronic conditions.
How Does It Work?
The body’s sympathetic nervous system is intensely stimulated by cold receptors in the skin. As a result, blood flows to the extremities and skin’s surface are redirected to insulate the body’s vital organs and maintain a constant core temperature. The response is the body’s survival mechanism where attention is directed towards maintaining the most crucial systems.
What are the Benefits?
Whole Body Cryotherapy triggers your body’s natural healing abilities. The therapy uses cold to induce a response in the nervous system, circulatory system, and Energy Meridians. This is the only such therapy known to induce such a powerful holistic and positive response. Here are some of the specific benefits you can get from Whole Body Cryotherapy:
When ice is applied to the body, it reduces inflammation in specific areas. Whole Body Cryotherapy, on the other hand, reduces inflammation throughout your body ensuring that healing occurs in more than one area. Cryotherapy reduces fatigue and anxiety by stimulating the vagus nerve.
At the end of a cryotherapy session, your body requires a great deal of energy to revert the body back to its normal state. During the hours following a 3-minute treatment session, your body burns about 500 to 800 calories. Reheating the skin back to its normal temperature needs a lot of energy which triggers the body to increase metabolism.
Reduced Chronic Pain and Fatigue
If you suffer from chronic fatigue or general body pain (such as fibromyalgia), you will be pleased to realize that cryotherapy reduces both. The feeling of relief may last for a few hours to several days depending on the individual. There are studies indicating that fibromyalgia patients can experience significant improvement after 10 or fewer sessions.
What should you expect during a Cryotherapy session?
Prior to a Cryotherapy session, you will be required to complete some assessment forms to check for contraindications. Your blood pressure may also be taken. You will then get undressed to the level of your comfort in the changing room. Next, you will be required to put on the socks, slippers and gloves and then step into the cryotherapy chamber. Once safely in the chamber, a technician will enter the room to coach you thru your 3-minute session. During the session, the temperature will drop significantly, but at no time should it be painful. After the session, it’s normal to feel a little cold to the touch; but, since the cooling system is dry, you will warm up almost immediately. You will then feel energized and any pain and fatigue should gradually be diminished.
**This process may vary by location according to cabin manufacturer recommendations.