Topical treatments are absorbed through the skin into the affected area and involve the use of either pharmaceutical or natural anesthetics and anti-inflammatory compounds that reduce pain and inflammation. These products may contain menthol, lidocaine, or herbal preparations that must be absorbed into the muscles to provide relief. To see the most benefit from these treatments, patients should apply these in conjunction with a light massage to facilitate muscle absorption. These treatments may take anywhere from fifteen minutes to one hour to reach full effectiveness. Patients should remain relaxed and immobile, preferably lying down, to achieve the most benefit.