HOW DOES ICE HELP SWELLING?

Girls' World - - Your Science Scoop - — Lara, 11, IA

When­ever you get in­jured, your body re­sponds by send­ing a bunch of blood cells and flu­ids to the af­fected body part to help it heal. Be­cause more fluid is rush­ing to that area than usual, it starts to swell up. But when you put some­thing su­per-cold, like ice, on an in­jury, the tis­sues and blood ves­sels will stop flow­ing to that body part and be­gin to con­tract. This causes the swelling to stop. Even though ice will help keep swelling down, leav­ing an ice pack on for too long can ac­tu­ally do more harm than good. If the in­jury site gets too cold, your body will send even more blood cells and flu­ids to that area to try to warm it back up. You should only keep ice on a swollen body part for 10-20 min­utes at a time.

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