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Cold application is the application of a cold agent cooler than the skin either in a moist or dry form, on the surface of the skin. This process is used to reduce pain and body temperature, anesthetize an area, control hemorrhages, control the growth of bacteria, prevent gangrene, prevent edema, and reduce inflammation.

Hot application is the application of a hot agent, warmer than skin either in a moist or dry form on the surface of the skin. This process is used to relieve pain and congestion, provide warmth, promote suppuration, promote healing, decrease muscle tone, and soften the exudates.

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