Icing while in the pain program was really easy. First there was an ice machine. I didn’t have to burn up the food processor twice a day. Then there’s the massage tables and hospital linen. I used a room that was all set up for icing. When I was done I just dumped the wet linen in a bin and someone else took care of it.
That’s not the case at home. I already mentioned the food processor problem. Then there’s the linens. I was hanging my towel on the deck and reusing it to try to keep the laundry down. And then there’s the massage table. We don’t have one. So I was trying to come up with a place to lay down on the ice without creating a big mess.
My first try at a solution came with the garden variety reusable ice pack. Throw it in the fridge and it’s ready to go. The instructions say not to use them without a towel but I find that they are more like the ice and wet towel technique if I laid directly on them. The only problem is that these type of packs dont stay cold as long as they need to. But they are nice in that I can just flop it down on the couch and lay right on it. No mess. When I was done, I just threw it back in the freezer. Easy.
I found the next solution at Walmart. It’s called CryoMax. The first evening I tried it. I had it in the freezer for only an hour or so. The instructions say not to use it without the supplied cloth but knowing what I’ve experienced with the wet towels and other ice packs I used it with no cloth. And it worked really well. 15 minutes and it was still very cold. I thought I had a winner.
Last night I woke up in pain and decided to ice. I went to the freezer and got out my two different ice packs. The regular one I used on my shoulders and the CryoMax I used on my lower back. As I lay on the couch I could really feel the CryoMax. I thought it felt more like the intensity of the wet towels and ice. It soon numbed and after 15 minutes I got up. Then I noticed that my lower back was frozen. Frostbite type frozen. This morning when I got up it was still bright red and had hardened clumps of skin. So I figured that using the CryoMAX without a cloth is not a good thing.
This morning after doing my stretches I iced. Using the regular ice packs on my shoulders without a cloth and the CryoMAX just below using the supplied cloth and it was almost perfect. So I think I have a good solution to ice without the mess and work of wet towels and chipped ice. Once I get healed up I’ll give it a good try!