Three Things to Consider Before Buying a Cold Pack for Injuries

Wrap your muscles and joints in cold comfort.

Woman holding an ice pack on her head
Get cool relief with a cold pack.Getty Images

Today’s cold packs are nothing like those leaky, floppy ones you got from the school nurse. Most are made with gel or clay, and feature enhanced moldability and long-lasting relief. Here are some factors to consider before you buy.

Chattanooga ColPac - Black Polyurethane - Oversize - 12.5 in x 18.5 in
Available in a variety of different sizes and reinforced around the edges for extra durability.Chattanooga

The last thing you want to see when applying a cold pack is that tell-tale goop leaking from the sides. To avoid this, look for double reinforced edges and strong materials like polyurethane.

Gel Cold & Hot Pack - 11x14.5" Reusable Warm or Ice Pack for Injuries, Hip, Shoulder, Knee, Back Pain - Hot & Cold Compress for Swelling, Bruises, Surgery - Heat & Cold Therapy
Wrap sore muscles and joints with this flexible option. Separate interior channels ensure maximum pliability, even right out of the freezer.Rester's Choice

A cold pack that comes out of the freezer stiff as a board isn’t going to help soothe sore muscles and joints. That’s why you want to find one that’s moldable and pliable without having to wait for it to thaw. A product that encases the gel in separate channels allows for greater flexibility over products that simply turn into a block of ice in the freezer.

ICEWRAPS Oversize Ice Pack with Soft Fabric Cover - 12"x21” Reusable Flexible Cold Compress Therapy Wrap for Knee, Back, Hip, Sciatica Swelling, Injuries, and Pain Relief
This oversized option has a moldable inner layer and stays chilly longer than gel pads.ICEWRAPS

Clay ice packs are the latest innovation in the world of hot and cold therapy. Naturally pliable, clay makes the perfect medium for conforming to whatever body part needs relief. And it stays colder much longer than gel or water, allowing for more time between replacements.