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Nitrogen VS. Electric Cryotherapy

Cryotherapy is the practice of using cold temperatures to promote natural healing and wellness. Dating back to ancient civilizations, cryotherapy has been used to help humans recover and heal faster. Today, cryotherapy stimulates the same rejuvenation at a whole new level with the addition of modern technology. 

However, the technology surrounding Cryotherapy can be overwhelming and confusing when determining which might be the best option. One of the biggest differentiating factors for most cryotherapy technology is whether the system uses nitrogen gas or electricity to cool you down. The differences between the two can often spark a heated argument between those who prefer electric chambers and those who prefer nitrogen chambers. We will simply say that both systems are good, depending on what you are trying to achieve. Any form of cryotherapy will help your body in a plethora of ways but the specific benefits of each system are what you will want to focus on when trying to determine what is best for you. 

The Truth

Unfortunately, most of the literature readily available surrounding cryotherapy is opinion led and often misleading. Most of the misleading information surrounds the use of nitrogen in cryotherapy chambers. For instance, it is said that nitrogen is dangerous/toxic so you should not use chambers that utilize nitrogen. While it is true that nitrogen can be toxic, pure oxygen is equally toxic. Cryotherapy chambers that utilize nitrogen do not utilize enough nitrogen to constitute any danger or toxicity. 

The misleading information does not stop there. There are many who state that Nitrogen cryotherapy chambers are not FDA approved and that the FDA warns against the use of Nitrogen chambers, but not electric. The fact is that there are no cryotherapy chambers (electric or nitrogen) that are FDA approved and the FDA actually warns agains claiming cryotherapy in general can cure a disease or treat a condition. 

The misleading information surrounding cryotherapy in general is confusing but even when trying to determine the right system for yourself you are met with even more misleading information about nitrogen vs. electric chambers. The bulk of the misleading information being released is purposefully trying to sway you one way or another for profit. We want to provide you with as much unbiased and factual information as possible so you can determine what system will work best for you, either for personal use or for your business. 

Which One Is Safer?

Electricity is a staple within our daily lives which can explain why we’re no longer question its safety. When electricity was first being introduced (and for years after) people were terrified of electricity. Many feared getting electrocuted while others believed high-electricity items like power lines cause cancer. Public opinion surrounding electricity changed over time with the implementation of safety measures and education surrounding electricity. 

It could be said that Nitrogen is still in the early stages of acceptance as being safe just like electricity once was. Both electricity and nitrogen can be very dangerous when not used properly but we know how to safely use electricity by now. What about nitrogen? 

woman starting full body cryotherapy

There are plenty of online “smear campaigns” against the use of nitrogen because it is ‘dangerous’. The fact is that the liquid nitrogen used in cryotherapy chambers is no more dangerous than most household products. When used properly, nitrogen is perfectly safe. Actually, nitrogen is successfully used throughout many different industries every day. For example, human embryos are frozen with nitrogen every day in fertility clinics. It is even being used in a process nicknamed Frotox where liquid nitrogen is applied directly on the face to reduce the signs of aging. Remember, most nitrogen ‘cautionary tales’ online are really smear campaigns to help drive sales for electric cryotherapy chambers. If nitrogen is used so frequently in processes and products that we don’t even know about, then how is it that it is so dangerous

Where's The FDA Approval?

There is no FDA approval for any cryotherapy device because cryotherapy is not a medical device. The many benefits and claims for cryotherapy you see are based on scientific literature and peer-reviewed studies. However, these are just ‘claims’ since cryotherapy has not been advertised as a cure to diseases, requiring FDA approval. There are plenty of other therapies, remedies and supplements that are not FDA approved but we believe in and use them. Some examples are massages, vitamin c tablets, whey protein, fish oil, etc. We use these products because there is enough supporting documentation for each that it is hard to not believe in the benefits, FDA approval or not. Cryotherapy should be approached and viewed in the same fashion as massage therapy, both not FDA approved but provide plenty of benefits .

Which One To Choose?

Nitrogen cryotherapy chamber users and manufacturers typically reserve their comments on electric cryotherapy chambers but there are still a few supposed ‘drawbacks’ to talk about. The biggest of which being the price. Electric chambers cost significantly more than nitrogen systems and can cost you even more once you see your electric bill. Additionally, electric chambers tend to be larger than their nitrogen counterparts. For these reasons, many choose a nitrogen cryotherapy chamber since it will arrive plug-in ready and can be rolled anywhere. Unload, unpack, plug in, attach the nitrogen and you are ready to go! Electric chambers will require you to hire at least an electrician if not contractor to set up. The costs are often the biggest deciding factor and if that is your case then a nitrogen system might be your best option. 

Either system is going to provide you with nearly identical results in the long run. You will be receiving / providing the primary benefits of cryotherapy in either system you choose. At the end of the day, you should choose a system that will work with your space, your finances and a system that you feel comfortable using. The Body Spa & Cryotherapy has been utilizing nitrogen cryotherapy chambers since we started and we could not imagine another way. However, we have used electric system before and we cannot hate on those system either. It comes down to personal preferences at the end of the day.

If you would like to learn more about cryotherapy visit our cryotherapy page or book an appointment and come in to experience nitrogen cryotherapy firsthand.