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3 Best Ice Packs for Back Pain in 2021 [Ranked + Reviewed]

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Best Back Ice Pack

Best of the Best
Back Pain Cold Reusable Ice Pack Belt Therapy for Lower Lumbar, Sciatic...
Runner Up
Arctic Flex Ice Pack for Injuries (4 in 1) - Large Reusable Cold or Hot Gel...
Best Brace
Old Bones Therapy Lower Back Brace with Adjustable Straps and Heat Ice Gel...
Med-X Ice Pack Belt
Arctic Flex
Old Bones Therapy Lower Back Brace
Best of the Best
Back Pain Cold Reusable Ice Pack Belt Therapy for Lower Lumbar, Sciatic...
Med-X Ice Pack Belt
Runner Up
Arctic Flex Ice Pack for Injuries (4 in 1) - Large Reusable Cold or Hot Gel...
Arctic Flex
Best Brace
Old Bones Therapy Lower Back Brace with Adjustable Straps and Heat Ice Gel...
Old Bones Therapy Lower Back Brace

Today we’re counting down our reviews for the best ice pack for back pain.

While there’s nothing wrong with using a bag of frozen peas for some much-needed back pain relief, there are much more effective options out there.

If you live an active lifestyle, and one which puts your back through the wringer, then you’d probably benefit from having a dedicated ice pack for your back.

That way, you don’t need to panic if you forgot to buy frozen peas at the supermarket, and you won’t have to worry about only getting a precious few minutes of pain relief.

Here are our top picks…

👑 Our Pick for Best Overall

Sale
Med-X Ice Pack Belt
The Med-X ice pack belt is the best option if you’re looking for a high-quality lower back brace that will hug your lumbar and provide pain relief in the form of cold or heat therapy.

Our Other Top Picks for Back Ice Pack

Best Ice Pack for Back Pain Reviews

Med-X Ice Pack Belt (👑 Best of the Best)

We believe that the best ice pack for the back is the Med-X back pain belt, which uses the power of cold therapy to provide pain relief for the lower back and lumbar.

While it isn’t uncommon to experience pain in the upper back, lower back pain is far more common, and usually a lot more uncomfortable. That’s what makes this supportive lower back belt from Med-X a blessing for anyone who regularly suffers with pain in the lumbar. It could be that you have to bend down a lot to do heavy lifting at work, or that you find it difficult to maintain correct posture all day which places strain on the lower back. Whatever the case, at the end of the day if you suffer from mild to severe lower back pain, you’re going to want some form of pain relief – even if it is only temporary.

This cold therapy belt provides up to 30 minutes of relief and fits a waist size of up to 42 inches. What’s more, the belt doesn’t only provide the soothing benefits associated with ice and cold therapy, but can also provide heat therapy too. That means you can get exactly the kind of relief you’re looking for, since both heat and cold can be very effective for alleviating lower back pain. The medical grade belt is clinically proven, too, which testifies to its effectiveness and quality. This should be enough to persuade you of its superiority to generic ice packs and bags of frozen goods.

Due to the patented flex gel technology, Med-X’s belt lasts longer than all the other leading brands, which makes its belt the best choice for prolonged pain relief. This is ideal if you want to relax on the couch and take your mind off things as the belt gets to work and soothes the pain in your lumbar. And while many other braces and back belts can seem stiff and rigid – unable to conform to the curvature of the back – this belt adapts to the spine and the Med-X Flex gel makes sure of that. Med-X has struck the perfect balance in this regard, and many satisfied customers praise this aspect of the belt. It is soft enough to feel comfortable, but firm enough to support the lower back. It doesn’t have any of the rigidity that makes some belts hard to wear comfortably, but also isn’t so soft that the belt doesn’t provide lasting benefits.

To use the belt, it’s as simple as placing it either in the microwave if you’re looking for heat therapy or in the freezer if you want to cool things down. All it takes is 1-2 hours in the freezer for the best results, so you can use the belt multiple times in a day if your back pain is getting you down. Investing in this belt doesn’t have to be a significant financial risk either, since the brand offers a full refund if you aren’t 100% satisfied, so you can essentially try the product before you buy.

Features:

  •  Medical grade gel therapy belt
  •  30 minutes hot or cold therapy
  •  FIts up to 42 inch waist
  •  Patented flex gel technology
  •  100% money-back guarantee
  •  Non toxic
  •  BPA-free
  •  FDA approved

Arctic Flex (🥈 Runner Up)

If you’re looking for a more traditional – and more affordable – ice pack, then you can’t go wrong with the Arctic Flex reusable ice packs. 

Our runner up pick, Arctic Flex’s ice pack is perfect for dealing with everything from swelling and inflammation, to sports-related injuries and general back pain or discomfort. Perhaps one of the best qualities of this large ice pack is that it is flexible. With this pack, you can target pain wherever it is on your body – not just your back. This is because it is exceptionally easy to secure to the body with its three fastener straps. As a result, you can fasten the ice pack to your shoulders, back, knees, or anywhere else you need some cold therapy.

Another thing this ice pack has going for it is the large size. While you might think this would make it awkward and cumbersome, it’s designed in such a way that it fits the contours of your body and wraps around comfortably. The large size means that you can target a large area, whether it’s the hips, the abdomen, or the back. There’s nothing worse than investing in an ice pack only to realise once it’s arrived that it doesn’t cover the whole area of discomfort. You won’t have this problem with the Arctic Flex ice pack, we can assure you. Since the pack adapts to your body, you should still have freedom of mobility even when you’re wearing it, so you don’t need to be sedentary or lying down to enjoy the benefits of cold therapy.

As well as cold therapy, this ice pack can provide heat therapy pain relief. You can either store the gel pack in your freezer for a couple of hours, or throw it in the microwave if you need something a little different. It’s nice to have this flexibility with a pack that can go on any part of the body, since what your back needs might be different from what your shoulders need. The gel pack you put in the freezer or microwave is encased in a soft removable cover. This cover is machine-washable, and lined with nonslip material which keeps the gel pack securely in place. The gel pack itself is made with strong, latex-free vinyl which is tear and split resistant and each seam is safely sealed to prevent leaks.

With this ice pack you’ll get a 60 day unconditional guarantee, so if it isn’t working out for you the option of a refund is still on the table for the first few months.

Features:

  •  Large ice pack
  •  Heat and cold therapy
  •  Removable machine-washable cover
  •  Three fastener straps
  •  Gel pack made from latex-free vinyl
  •  60 day unconditional guarantee
Arctic Flex
The Arctic Flex ice pack offers up soothing cold therapy and comforting heat therapy to alleviate pain anywhere on the body. The flexible and large design make it easy to secure to different parts of the body, without restricting mobility.

Old Bones Therapy Lower Back Brace (⭐ Best Brace)

If you’re looking for a lower back brace which has a gel ice pack inside, then this one from Old Bones Therapy is your best bet.

Sometimes having just an ice pack isn’t enough. Sometimes the pain is such that you want support for the lower back in order to alleviate the discomfort but also encourage correct posture. It can feel comforting to have a supportive brace wrapped around your lower back, squeezing the pain away. So ice packs and back braces really are a match made in heaven.

This back brace provides compression which helps with muscle fatigue, swelling, and much more. But in addition to this, it has a gel pack inside which can provide either hot or cold therapy, depending on what you’re looking for. Another benefit of having a brace such as this one is that you can wear it as you go about your day, unlike with a lot of other ice packs that require you to minimise your movements and stay still. This makes it an excellent choice for the office worker, the athlete, and the thrill-seeker. The brace shouldn’t restrict your range of motion, so you’re free to do the activities you normally would.

Features:

  •  Hot or cold therapy
  •  4 flexible stability stays
  •  Dual elastic pull bands 
  •  Non-slip silicone lining
Sale
Old Bones Therapy Lower Back Brace
The Old Bones Therapy lower back brace not only provides compression for the lumbar, but it also has both hot and cold therapy options with the built-in gel pack.

Ultimate Guide

If you’re looking to get the ice pack that works best for you and your pain, you’ll need to factor in a few key things.

An ice pack doesn’t just refer to a gel pack full of ice, and you’ll find that most of the time the best options are gel packs contained within back belts or braces.

As a result, there’s a lot more to consider than just size and how long the pack stays cold for.

Before we take a look at the different types of ice pack and their benefits though, we’re going to assess the benefits of cold therapy as compared to heat therapy.

Cold vs Heat Therapy

To give you an idea of whether it’s cold or heat therapy you need, we’re going to assess the benefits of each.

One of the great things about ice packs these days is that you’ll find in the majority of cases that the product offers both cold and heat therapy.

That way, you get the best of both worlds, and can pick depending on the type of pain you’re experiencing.

Cold Therapy

Cold therapy is commonly cited as the best way to reduce inflammation and swelling in the body.

After all, there’s a reason why athletes take ice baths and use cryochambers to speed up the recovery process.

But for the average person who can’t afford a cryochamber or doesn’t dare attempt to take an ice path, the best option is an ice pack.

An ice pack can be used to temporarily stem the flow of nerve activity, and provide pain relief for the back or any other part of the body.

While ice on its own would be too cold, if you have a gel pack enveloped in something else, you have a powerful tool for recovery which is reusable too.

This is what makes the belts and braces we’ve seen in this guide so popular for dealing with back pain.

Heat Therapy

Whereas cold therapy gets to work on inflammation and swelling, heat therapy will boost the circulation of blood around the body which can alleviate discomfort.

As a result, heat therapy can also provide valuable healing benefits, and can even be used in combination with cold therapy in the appropriate circumstances.

The kind of heat therapy you get from gel packs is most likely dry heat, though you can also find some that offer moist heat.

If you have stiff pain in the back or you feel like the muscles aren’t well-engaged, heat therapy can be a great solution to get things re-activated.

Features

While there are different types of ice packs to consider, there are some general features that you’ll want to pay attention to if you want the best results.

Adaptability

If you think of an ice block, those rigid square plastic blocks that are packed full of ice, you can imagine why it wouldn’t be a great long-term solution for back pain.

Its rock solid design means that it isn’t able to adapt to the curvature of the spine, and can only provide relief in a small area.

What you want to seek out is something that’s flexible, and has a design which adapts to the spine.

For example, a belt like the one by Med-X or a brace like the Old Bones Therapy one can wrap around the back and still provide a great range of motion so you can go about your daily business.

Other options, like the pack from Old Bones Therapy, allow you to strap the ice pack to any part of the body which gives you even more options.

Duration

Some ice packs last longer than others.

Ideally, you want one which can last long enough for you to get the pain relief you need in the moment.

The Med-X belt offers as many as 30 minutes of cold therapy, which makes it one of the longest-lasting ice pack products.

Another factor here is how long it takes to cool the ice pack down in the freezer.

If it takes a long time and you don’t get a long duration, then it might not be worth it.

Lifestyle Preference

If you’re getting an ice pack to relax with after rigorous sport, it doesn’t matter so much how flexible the design is.

However, if you want to be going about your day as you experience the benefits of cold therapy, then you’ll want a design that facilitates that.

Belts and braces are both great options if you want better posture throughout the day and close to full range of motion and mobility as you wear them.

Frequently Asked Questions About Back Ice Packs

Do ice packs help back pain?

Yes, ice packs certainly can help alleviate back pain.

There’s a lot of arguments over whether cold or heat therapy is best for back pain, and the truth is that both can be effective.

Ice packs are great for treating initial inflammation, and calming down searing pain.

Which ice packs stay cold the longest?

Of those we reviewed, our top pick from Med-X lasts the longest.

This ice pack belt is FDA-approved and clinically proven, and it also boasts a longer working time than many other belts in the same category.

It has a flexible design somewhere between hard and soft, and this allows you to benefit from an extended period of time with cold therapy.

What is the best ice pack to buy?

In our view, the best ice pack to buy is the Med-X ice pack belt.

While you may just be looking for a simple ice pack to apply to the back, we would strongly recommend you expand your search to include belts and braces.

This belt uses patented gel flex technology to adapt to the curvature of the spine, and stay put for 30 minutes, whether it’s hot or cold therapy you’re looking for.

A Final Word From Wellness Nova

There’s a reason why we always reach for the bag of frozen peas when back pain strikes, and it’s because cold therapy works very well for pain relief.

If you’re looking for a long-term solution that you can rely on whenever you feel discomfort in the back, then it’s worth shopping around to see what’s out there.

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure for more info.
Article by:

Wellness Nova Team

Our detailed review has been contributed to by multiple members of the Wellness Nova Review Team to ensure the best research and highest standard of quality. Have a good or a bad experience with one of the products? Please let us know, we love the feedback!

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