Medical Trends: Are Cold Plunges Dangerous?

January 31, 2024

If you’re using social media, you may have seen the current viral trend of cold plunging. This trend involves influencers soaking in an icy bath of water, claiming a plethora of health benefits. Although the trend has gone viral for its extreme content, health officials have been speaking up about the potential risks that may outweigh the proposed benefits of ice baths. Learn more about ice baths and their risks and benefits. Visit AFC Urgent Care Bedford for walk-in health and wellness services available to patients in Bedford, MA with no appointment needed.

Why Are Cold Plunges Viral?

If you’re not on social media, you may be wondering what the hype around ice baths is all about. In most cases, influences create videos showing users their cold plunge baths. These plunges are typically in metal pools that are stored outside in the snow. Usually, they are frozen over and the users have to smash the ice before getting into the pool in their bathing suit.

Cold plunges have gone viral as a health and wellness trend, stating suggested health benefits associated with cold plunging like reduced inflammation, an increase in natural energy, and reduced muscle soreness. Although something like a cold shower may bring some health benefits, users are using this extreme trend to gather views, without stating the potential health risks associated with cold plunging. This has created the false reality that plunging in icy water is completely safe, and even healthy.

Dangers Of Cold Plunging

If you’re someone who has watched these videos of cold plunges on social media and wondered whether the health benefits are worth the risk of diving into a pool of icy water in below-freezing conditions, the short answer is probably not. Exposure to cold temperatures can be deadly, and submerging yourself in water that is partially frozen is certainly something that can have very serious negative health consequences.

The CDC states that even exposure to water that is 40 degrees, which is above the point of freezing, can lead to hypothermia. Not only that, but being outdoors in extreme temperatures without proper clothing can lead to frostbite in a matter of minutes. If you’re alone, the risk of drowning due to hypothermia-induced confusion is a very serious risk. Heart attacks can also be triggered by extreme temperature shock to the body.

Visit AFC Urgent Care Bedford For Same-Day Health & Wellness Care

Ultimately, the extreme cold plunging seen on social media is a drastic interpretation that is meant to pocket views, not give health advice. If you are someone looking for ways to reduce inflammation, recover better after workouts, or feel more energetic throughout the day you should speak to your medical provider. AFC Urgent Care Bedford offers same-day health and wellness services for patients in Bedford, MA, and the surrounding communities. Simply walk into our clinic, or schedule an appointment online.

Our dedicated medical staff is board-certified and trained to help with a variety of different health and wellness concerns. Our clinic is open 7 days a week from 8am-8pm and offers short wait times. We accept most major medical insurance plans and offer affordable care options. We understand that having access to reliable healthcare is important. Walk into the clinic today for comprehensive healthcare that you can rely on. For additional questions regarding our clinic, contact us directly by calling (781) 430-8161.

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