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Does Putting an Ice Cube on Your Wrist Cool You Down Faster?

A person holds an ice cube against their wrist.

After a hot and sweaty run or while you’re trying to relax on a scorching summer day, we all want quick and effective ways to cool down. One popular theory suggests that placing an ice cube on your wrist can rapidly cool your body and is the perfect hack for beating the heat.

But does ice on your wrists really work? It turns out that…yes, it kind of does.

The human body uses various mechanisms to cool down naturally, but sometimes giving it a little bit of help can increase comfort faster. Placing an ice cube against pulse points such as your wrist and neck helps you feel a sense of cooling relief immediately.

Putting ice on any part of your body is a way to make your body feel cold, but placing it against your pulse point gives you an extra boost. This is thanks to the blood vessels in those areas.

Since the blood vessels are close to the surface of your skin, you can start bringing your body temperature down more effectively than placing ice on other areas.

FlexiKold Gel Ice Pack

Use ice packs instead of ice cubes for some flexibility in your cooling methods.

It’s worth noting that placing an ice cube on your wrist may provide a temporary sensation of coolness, but its ability to quickly, significantly lower your body temperature is limited. The ice cube’s cooling effect on the wrist is localized so when you remove the ice, you may still feel overheated.

To cool down more thoroughly, focus on including strategies that target the body’s overall cooling mechanisms. It helps to maintain your hydration levels. Drink cold water or other hydrating beverages to replenish fluids lost through sweat.

You can also apply a cold towel, compress, or ice cubes directly to multiple areas of your body. Place some on your forehead, neck, and multiple other pulse points. This can help refresh you quickly by cooling more areas of your body.

If you have access to one, then a cold shower is another great solution to getting cool quickly. You can quickly lower your body temperature and provide instant relief from the heat.

CIVPOWER Portable Neck Fan

A neck fan can help keep you cool during the hot months of the year.

If you’re hoping to keep yourself consistently cool this summer, make sure you’re consistently drinking plenty of water and limiting time spent outdoors. Increase your ventilation wherever possible by turning on fans, opening windows, or using your air conditioner.

If you’re outdoors and need to cool down quickly, find areas of shade or create your own with an umbrella. Avoid direct exposure to the sun if you find yourself overheating.

Always remember that ice cubes against your wrist can provide a momentary cooling sensation, but don’t rely on this alone to reduce your body temperature in an emergency.

Abbey Ryan Abbey Ryan
Abbey Ryan is a storyteller, preferably of stories in written form. Across the 5 years of her professional writing career, her work has been featured in The Chicago Tribune, Amazon, The Medical News Today, and more. When she's not writing (which is rare), she's likely traveling, painting, or on the hunt for a good snack. Read Full Bio »
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