Heat therapy, also known as thermotherapy, refers to the use of heat for relieving pain, according to Wheat Bags Australia. Heat therapy is a safe alternative to medication for muscle and joint pain. Heat increases blood flow by opening blood vessels, which increases oxygen supply to the affected area.
Heat works by relaxing stiffness and soreness, leading to better healing and pain relief, explains the Health Encyclopedia of the University of Rochester Medical Center. Heat also penetrates deep and helps soothe sore muscles. There are two options of heat: dry and moist. Moist heat penetrates better, unlike dry heat, which may dry the skin. The heat should not be too hot, but maintaining a consistent temperature gives better results.