Thursday, December 30, 2004

Heat Pack for Tension - Important

I have made an amazingly simple discovery about the use of a heat pack for tension relief. The neck and shoulder area is where we carry most of our tension. This is much worse probably with Lyme disease. I am not the first to notice this, but I am a bit surprised at how important this has become for me. By using the heat pack day and night as I will describe, I have noticed a dramatic drop-off in tension, and an increase in the restorative power of sleeping. This has helped to resolve a chronic sleep problem that has plagued me for 7 years!

First, the heat pack. I use it for the neck and shoulders. I now wear one around my neck for hours at a time. You can make them to your liking (simple sewing) and fill with rice or dried corn (regular yellow, not popcorn). You put it in the microwave for 2 minutes or so to heat it. This has become a regular daily part of my protocol and it is very effective. I gave one to a friend and one to my daughter who also both have Lymes, and both report that it is very helpful.

I have found that much of the tension from Lyme centers in the neck and shoulder area, and relaxing that with the heat pack helps all of the other muscles in the rest of the body to relax. The corn is best if you have it, it seems to hold the heat much longer, with some residual heat still after an hour or more. Rice also works well. I have used the commercial gel-packs but they are inferior, and don’t get the heat to the skin the same. The grain-filled pack shapes perfectly to the neck and shoulder area, lots of contact and lots of heat to the muscles.

I believe that the heat pack has the added benefit of chasing infections or parasites out of the neck region, or maybe even killing them. This is because it seems to do more than just relax muscles, it seems to lower the ‘load’ somehow. However, be careful not to over-heat the pack, or to let it cool a bit to touch before placing it on the neck, otherwise you may get a mild sunburn type of effect on the skin.

The heat pack has a long sleeve for the covering, and an internal pack with sections for the corn/rice. It should be about the length of a short winter neck scarf (2 ½ or 3 ft long), and you can then wear it any way you might wear a scarf. Sometimes at night I wrap it completely around the neck to warm the thyroid, which relaxes the body very quickly. Probably other shapes could be used also to cover other areas that are tense. You can purchase these types of packs on the Internet, but they are cheap to make. A quick and easy heat pack is made from an athletic sock (they are thick and won't leak grain). Just fill the sock about 1/3 full of the grain, then tie a knot in the end, or sew it shut. Then put in the microwave for 1-2 minutes. The grain molds nicely to the body, and distributes the heat more evenly than most commercial gel packs.


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