5 Ways To Make Heating Pads At Home
We, of course, prefer that if someone is going to use a heating pad, they use a LavaBag.
But in the case where you are waiting for your LavaBag to be delivered, you do have a few things you can do at home.
These options include a wet dish towel, an oven heated towel, filling an old sock, using steamed vegetables, and heating up a sandstone.
Read on to find out which method might be the best for you.
Wet dish towel
This is probably one of the easiest options out there, though it might not hold as much heat as you want.
So start off by grabbing a new dish towel (one that was not recently used) and then get it wet in your sink.
It is probably a good idea to ring it out a few times to make sure you don't have too much water in the wash cloth (otherwise, if there is too much water, you'll end up getting yourself all wet).
Once you have it all rung out, then place it in a microwave safe freezer bag.
After that, you should be fine to place it in the microwave.
You should only heat it up for not more than 90 seconds.
If you feel like you need more heat after the 90 seconds, try adding another 30 seconds.
But anything more than this might be too hot and you might end up ruining the dish towel.
Once it is done in the microwave, take it out and place it in a towel.
Placing it in the towel should give you a layer of protection for your skin.
If you place a hot object directly on your skin and keep it there for too long, you could potentially give yourself a rash.
After it is in the towel, then you should be able to place it on the part of your body that needs it.
Keep in mind that you probably won't be getting too much heat from the dish towel (maybe upwards of 20 minutes).
So if 20 minutes isn't long enough, you'll find yourself having to get up and place the dish towel in the microwave again (check how much water is in the dish towel and re-wet as needed).
As mentioned, this is probably one of the easiest options out there, though it might not be the most effective.
An oven heated towel
You can use an oven heated towel to cover a larger area then a wet dish towel.
For example, if you want to cover your whole belly, you could do that with an oven heated towel.
Start off by grabbing a towel you are willing to give up for a little bit (make sure it hasn't been recently used).
Then get the towel damp (put it under the faucet until it is all wet).
Once you got the towel wet, wring it out a little bit so you aren't getting everything wet.
Then you will want to fold it up (you can make the towel really small or you can make it large enough to cover your belly).
When you have it folded up, then put the oven on 300 degrees.
Then place your towel on or in something that you are willing to put into the oven.
For example, you might have a 13 inch by 9 inch glass pan.
Place your folded towel into the glass pan or whatever you've chosen to put in the oven.
Then place it in the oven.
Leave it in the oven for 5 to 10 minutes.
If you leave it in the oven longer really depends on how hot it has gotten.
Then, before you place it on your body, you'll want to have something in between the hot towel and your body.
You can use another towel for this or a thin sheet.
Place it on your body now for the heat treatment.
Then you can leave it there for 15 to 20 minutes or until the heat runs out.
If you feel like you need it longer, then you can place it in the oven again and heat it up again.
An old sock
An old sock is great because you aren't giving up much, since the sock is old and if you are good enough, you'll find one that doesn't have a match (around my house there are a lot of these).
And make sure the sock hasn't been recently used.
The only other thing you'll have to give up is the food filler.
Depending on which one you like best, once you find the old sock, you need to pick a food filler to put in there.
Rice and wheat berries are good options.
You can also use cherry pits or clay beads, but you will be less likely to find these laying around in your house.
Get your uncooked food filler option and fill the old sock three quarters of the way full.
Then, you'll have to sow the sock shut.
Otherwise you could end up with your food filler all over the floor.
Put it in the microwave and heat it up for 90 seconds to 2 minutes.
But be careful not to heat it up for more than 2 minutes.
Doing so could burn the food filler and then you'd just smell the burn and it wouldn't give you very much each.
Apply to your body as necessary.
If the heat runs out too quickly, place it in the microwave again for 90 seconds to 2 minutes.
And if you do end up burning the filler, you can just grab another old sock and try it again.
If you are anything like me, you always have a bag or two of frozen vegetables in your freezer.
For us, some of these get eaten and others just sit in there for a really long time.
Well, for those that you don't plan on eating anytime in the future, you can put them to good use.
If you stick them in the microwave for a minute or two, they should work well as an emergency heating pad.
So find the bag of frozen vegetables that you want to use.
Then stick them in the microwave for 2 to 3 minutes, or however many minutes the bag recommends for full cook.
Take it out of the microwave and place it in a towel.
At first there will be some steam coming off of the bag.
Allow the steam to stop before place it on your body.
Not placing it in the towel may make it so you have too much heat applied directly to your body.
Once you have it in the towel, then you can apply it to the affected area and you should be good.
Unfortunately this option might not be too good for multiple heating sessions, since once it has cooled down all you have is a bag of cooked vegetables.
This option does take a little bit of forethought if you don't already own a soapstone.
Soapstone's have actually been used for a long time by massage therapists for relaxing your muscles, so this could be a good option for you as well.
It is also a good option because soapstone's actually keep heating really well.
This is a reason as to not heat it up in a microwave.
The way you are going to heat it up is in a pot.
Fill up a pot with water and then bring it to a boil.
Then use tongs to place the soapstone into the boiling water.
Once the soapstone has been in the boiling water for 30 minutes to an hour, use the tongs again to fetch the soapstone out of the water.
Allow the soapstone to cool for some time before you place it directly on your body.
Then you should be able to place it on the part of your body that needs the heat treatment.
Why we think LavaBags are the best
There are so many different options for heating pads out there, but we honestly think that our LavaBags are the best.
There are a few reasons for this.
First, LavaBags are good for both hot and cold therapy.
Thanks to the fact that we use lava sand in our LavaBags, the LavaBags can easily go from hot to cold treatment without you having to worry about whether or not your ruining the LavaBag.
This just simply isn't true for other microwavable heating pads.
You see, most other heating pads use some type of food filler.
This includes rice, cherry pits, wheat, beans and more.
And the constant change from hot to cold will eventually burn out the food fillers.
Once they have been burned, they won't keep the heat as well as before.
It will also smell like burning each time you heat up the heating pad.
This just doesn't happen with the LavaBag because the lava sand doesn't get burnt.
So you can easily switch between hot and cold and not worry about having to buy another LavaBag (though it doesn't hurt to have more than one lying around the house).
Second, you can easily wash the LavaBag.
There are a few options for washing the LavaBag.
You can start by putting your LavaBag in your dishwasher.
You'll also need to add a little bit of dishwashing soap to the dishwasher.
Then have it run through the regular cycle.
Another option, if you don't want to use the dishwasher, is to use your washing machine.
You can throw your LavaBag into the washing machine with your regular load of laundry (keep in mind that you aren't going to want to do a bunch of heavy stuff with your LavaBag, so maybe wash it with a load of clothes instead of sheets and blankets).
If you have a particular stain you want to get out, then put some laundry soap directly on that spot and rub the soap in for a minute.
Then place it in the washing machine with the rest of your clothes and take it through a normal wash.
Once the wash cycle is done, you can put it in the dryer to dry out as well.
It should come out smelling nice and clean.
We recently needed to wash our LavaBag, since our kids had put the LavaBag in the microwave right after they had gotten some butter splattered in there.
So every time we warmed up our LavaBag, it smelled like butter.
Finally my wife had enough of the smell.
So I put some laundry detergent on it and put it in a wash cycle with some of our clothes.
When we took it out of the dryer, the butter smell was completely gone.
The last option is to spot clean anything on the LavaBag.
This could include taking a wet wash cloth to the LavaBag or maybe a baby wipe and cleaning the spot that needs it.
This option is good as well because then you don't have to worry about drying the LavaBag (which isn't a hassle, it just means putting it in an oven for a few hours at 200 degrees).
Third, there is very little you can do to ruin a LavaBag.
We've talked about how the filler won't burn, so you don't have to replace the filler (though you can buy some more lava sand here)
We also talked about how you can wash the LavaBag as stuff happens to it (you can also purchase covers here so you can wash those instead of the LavaBags).
The only thing that might ruin a LavaBag is if you put it in the oven at too high of a temperature for too long (keep in mind this would only ruin the bag and not the lava sand inside).
The classic LavaBag is made from 100% cotton, and cotton will burn at around 210 degrees.
So if you were to put the LavaBag in the oven at a high temperature like 350 or 400 degrees and leave it in there for a long period of time, that could ruin the LavaBag.
While you can't always have a LavaBag available for your heating pad needs, there are a few things you can do at home to remedy this.
First, if you have hand towels, full length towels, or old socks, those are all good options using fabric for a heating pad.
Outside of that, you can also use a bag of frozen vegetables or soapstone's to your advantage for heat treatment.
We, of course, prefer to have a LavaBag handy for all of our heating pad needs, which you can check out by going here.