Heating pads made with grain versus electric heating pad and gel packs

Heating pads for back pain and other body ailments have been used for 1000s of years.  It is what might have been called "Thermal Medicine".  The kinds of heating pads available on the market today however is endless depending on your needs.  Some prefer electric heat pads, some prefer gel while others look for grain and seed fillings. 

While electric heating pads are great for the ability to keep the heat at a consistent temperature, they must be monitored so not to burn your skin, leave it on after falling asleep or worse under the blankets while you leave the house.  Over the past 20 years however, doctors have started to recommend a hot then cold approach for soothing stiff and cramping muscles.  Too much of one temperature defeats the purpose. We have learned that when an area with muscle, tissue and tendons is inflamed, cold is a better remedy than heat.  While heat will soothe sore muscles, it's cold that will reduce the inflammation for recovery purposes.  I know that sucks to hear because nobody likes putting a cold pack on a warm body but hey.. doctors orders! 

Gel packs are a newer product developed in the early 1970's. Typically, their size is smaller and not conducive for back pain or larger body part pain.  It is most often used as a cold pack.  In recent years and with more chemicals added, gel packs are now able to be used hot as well.  I really hope you cringed when you read the work 'chemicals'.  Yes, gel packs are filled with chemicals to keep their temperature and allow them to be pliable.  They were all the rage when they first came out but with our heightened sense of self care and what we put in, on and around our bodies, they have taken a back seat to more natural products.  

That leaves grain and seed filled heat packs. 

Without being bias .... Ya right... who am I kidding.  I make heat packs for back pain, neck pain and every other pain and I don't even own an electric heating pad or a gel pack!

So here's the skinny on grain and seed filled heat packs but particularly The Flax Pac heating pad.  When you use a more natural product to help heal your aches and pains you can not only adjust temperature but you can also be assured you are not breathing in unseen chemicals or using anything that could be hazardous for you.  With flax being a seed and having an oil content instead of a grain with a water content like rice; it stays hotter much longer than a grain would.   The type of fabric that is used for your heating pad is as important as its filling.  We use medium weigh 100% cotton fabric for two design functionality reasons.  First, medium weigh fabric will retain heat much better than a thin quilting cotton.  Moist heat is the most beneficial type of heat and that is what THE FLAX PAC provides.  So for your pack to work properly, we need to keep those little seeds hot and dry and thin cotton will not do the job.  The second reason for using medium weigh cotton is for durability.  We take pride in the construction and design features of THE FLAX PAC and one design feature that is paramount is the channels.  These carefully measured and filled channels are what keeps the seed in place so it can do its job.  If our heat packs stretched even a little bit that seed:fill ratio would be off and your pack would end up like every other pack on the market: floppy and pretty much useless.  

So there you have it.  A summery of the differences between the types of heating pads on the market today so you can be an informed consumer and choose the heat pack that's right for you and your body!  If you'd like us to help you 'Heal in Style" you can click this link to take you back to our home page. 


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