Warm compress, using a specific material, applied with pressure, could provide continual heat to one certain area of human body, and the heat penetrates the underlying muscles and increases blood flow to the site, for a period of time. It looks like a good method which is needed for several kinds of issues from the pain caused by injured or overused muscles to stiff joints, etc. Therefore, it is one popular treatment choice to easily and effectively improve blood circulation to help you relieve from an injury or illness.
Now, let us learn more if there are some actional ways to make warm compress at home, and when it should be used.
What kinds of condition should you use warm compress?
Warm compress is often used in issues that benefit from more blood flow around the specific area or conditions that have blocked pores that need to be released.
Here is some common warm compress application in your life, including:
Lower and upper back pain,
Sinus congestion or pressure,
Neck or shoulder stiffness,
How to use warm compress
When to use moist or dry warm compress, you firstly should test its temperature before applying warm compress to the affected area. It is best that this compress is warm enough, but not so hot that may burn your skin.
Then, you have to hold the compress to the specific area for up to 10 minutes by one time. If directed, gently massage the area with the compress.
Until the compress is cool down, it should be needed to reheat as a continual heat source to keep on the compress.
During the time you enjoy this warm compress, it is normal that skin becomes slightly pink or red, but if there is a bright red pain, or a burning place, you should make the compress much hotter.
Generally, around the eye area, heat compress temperature should be lower than other part on the human body due to its special nature of the skin around the eyes.
According to body’s need, you maybe apply to warm compress by many times by one day, using a clean compress every time, to help relieve symptoms from the blocked pores or ducts.
How to make moist warm compress
Step 1: Gather a clean towel and prepare one thermos with warm water.
Step 2: If directed, advise to add 1 tablespoon of salt to the water. And, wash your hand.
Step 3: Either hold the towel inside warm water for half a minute, or heat water in a container to dunk the towel.
Step 4: Squeeze the extra water out until the towel is wet without dripping.
Step 5: Test with a thermometer to ensure that the temperature of the compress is not too hot. Exactly, it should be warm enough. The water should not be warmer than 100°F (37.7℃) for babies, 105°F (40.5℃) for children, and 120°F (48.8℃) for adults. Adults should use 105°F (40.5℃) water if it will apply the compress to eyes.
Step 6: Fold towel for easy application to the site.
Step 7: Hold the moist warm compress towel on the certain area for up to 10 minutes even longer. You may need to rewarm the towel with warm water during this time as it cools off. Gently pat your skin dry with a clean towel.
How to keep moist warm compress longer
Step 1: Gather 2 clean towels and a nonwoven bag with drawstring.
Step 2: Wet both towels inside warm water and put one towel folded inside of this bag.
Step 3: The bag is open, and use microwave to heat the towel for 1-2 minutes until it is warm enough.
Step 4: Carefully remove the bag from the microwave to ensure that the hot steam does not burn you.
Step 5: Now close the open of the bag using drawstring to retain the hot steam inside and make the compress stay warmer for longer.
Step 6: Wrap this bag with the towel inside into another warm towel and place on the certain area of body.
Step 7: Hold the warm compress for up to 10 minutes by one time. This bag with the microwaved towel inside should maintain warm temperature is longer than only a towel.
How to make dry warm compress
Step 1: as usual in your home life, dry compress often is rubber hot water bottle or electric hot water bottle or electric heating pad or gel reusable hot pack. Of course, at here, we prepare electric hot water bottle as a sample. (What is an electric hot water bottle?)
Step 2: wrap an electric hot water bottle into a clean dry towel before you apply it to your skin.
PS1: do not leave a dry compress on your skin for more than 10 minutes as it may burn your skin if it is left for too long.
PS2: do not fall asleep with a dry compress on your skin.
First cheap way to make dry warm compress – Rice Bag:
If there is no rubber hot water bottle or electric hot water bottle or electric heating pad or gel reusable hot pack, we also can help you to apply dry warm compress to your skin with hassle-free.
Step 1: Please prepare a nonwoven bag with drawstring and dry enough uncooked rice.
Step 2: Fill the rice into this bag, then should close this bag using drawstring to seal the rice inside.
Step 3: Use microwave to heat the bag for 1 minutes, then check its temperature. If it is not warm, keep on heating. It should be warm enough, but not too hot to burn your skin.
Step 4: Wrap the bag with a clean dry towel to apply to the certain area for up to 10 minutes by one time or many times as directed.
Second cheap way to make dry warm compress – Salt Bag:
Step 1: place a little salt in a clean nonwoven bag and close its open with drawstring.
Step 2: use the microwave to heat this salt bag for 2-3 minutes.
Step 3: check if this nonwoven bag is tightly closed by drawstring to avoid the spilling hot salt on your skin.
Step 4: check the temperature of the bag to see if it is warm enough, but not too hot to burn your skin.
Step 5: apply this salt bag to the certain site to relieve pain or spasm.
How to use warm water soak?
Step 1: Fill a clean container (suggest to use washbasin) with warm water and soap. The container should be deep enough to cover the area completely.
Step 2: Test the temperature of the water using a thermometer. Water temperature should not be warmer than 100°F (40.5℃) for children and babies, and 120°F (48.8℃) for adults.
Step 3: If directed, add 1 tablespoon of salt to the water.
Step 4: Soak the area for 30 minutes or as long as directed.
Step 5: Gently pat your skin dry when you have done soaking.
Step 6: Clean the container when finished.
There is a research to make clear that warm water therapy provides better results at reducing muscle pain than resting or doing nothing.
The benefit from warm compress is mainly for relieving pain or spasm or stiff from muscle, but there is some conditions that you must not apply warm compress, which you have to pay an attention. As follow:
- You are heat sensitive.
- The affected area is numb.
- You have an open wound or dermatitis.
- Your skin is red or hot.
- The damage is fresh or results from burn or infection.
PS: Excessive heat can be harmful. You must have to remember this key point.
Warm compress is relatively safe and simple and frequently used as an immediate therapy for common injuries.