Does heating pad help kidney stones?
Are you tired of experiencing kidney stones and the excruciating pain that accompanies them? Fear not my friend, for there may be a solution right under your nose (or rather, on top of your abdomen). Yes, I am talking about the heating pad. But does it actually work or is it just another internet hoax? Let’s dive deeper into this warm topic.
What are Kidney Stones?
Before we delve into whether heating pads can help with kidney stones, let’s first understand what they are. Basically, kidney stones are small hard deposits made up of minerals and salts that form inside the kidneys or urinary tract. These pesky little things tend to cause immense pain as they pass through the body during urination. Think of it like trying to pass a boulder through a tiny straw-yeah, not fun.
Fun fact: Did you know that ancient Egyptians used honey mixed with raw vegetables to treat kidney stone pain? Talk about sweet relief!
How do Heating Pads Work?
Now that we’re all on the same page about what exactly kidney stones are (and how much they suck), let’s move onto heating pads. At its most basic level, a heating pad works by increasing blood flow and relaxing muscles in whatever area it is placed upon. So essentially it’s like giving your bladder a big ol’ hug with warmth!
This increased blood flow helps to ease tension and reduce inflammation which can go a long way towards reducing pain levels caused by something like ohhh…let me think.. KIDNEY STONES PERHAPS?!
Can Heat Really Help With Kidney Stone Pain?
Okay so now here comes the part where you want me to get down to business: Does using heat really make any difference when dealing with painful pebbles lodged in sensitive places (<–pun intended)??
The answer isn’t black-and-white yes or no, as there are a few things to take into consideration. Firstly, it’s important to note that while heat can help relieve pain and relax muscles, it won’t completely get rid of the kidney stone itself. Sorry folks! Secondly, everyone’s body is different- what works for one person may not work for another.
With that said though, most medical professionals agree that using heat therapy in conjunction with other treatments (more on those later) can be beneficial in managing kidney stone pain. In fact many urologists suggest applying a heating pad set at low/medium temperature directly over the affected area of the back or abdomen for about 20 minutes a day (pro tip: TWICE A DAY!).
Other Methods For Dealing With Kidney Stones
As I mentioned earlier though, heat isn’t the only method out there when dealing with these evil little stones. Here are some other methods you might find helpful:
Increase Water Intake
Drinking more water will increase urine production which in turn helps flush out harmful substances from your kidneys and urinary tract.
Pain medication such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen paired with an anti-nausea drug like metoclopramide can be prescribed by doctors to help alleviate symptoms caused by kidney stones.
For larger or particularly stubborn stones there are various procedures available including extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy (ESWL), ureteroscopy and percutaneous nephrolithotomy aka “PCNL”. Don’t worry about me pronouncing these correctly either…my skills is limited <?emoji face_with_hand_over_mouth>.
How To Use A Heating Pad Safely
Now comes my public service announcement: Before you go rogue with your heating pad use here’s how to keep safe whilst receiving all these hot benefits.
- Don’t fall asleep whilst lying on top of it: You might melt your kidneys or start a house fire.
- Check the temperature before application: Important to ensure that you don’t accidentally damage the skin by having it too hot, especially if you have existing burns in the area.
- Use heating pads for short periods of time: 20 minutes is enough per session but no longer than two 30-minute sessions each day.
So there we have it folks- using heat therapy via a heating pad is indeed a legitimate strategy when managing your kidney stones while also feeling extra comfy-cozy at home! Whilst it won’t scare the little crystals back into place, many Urologists recommend their patients use them in conjunction with other treatments for effective relief from this oh-so-painful ailment, and who doesn’t love an extra bit of natural warmth? So get yourself situated, get heated up (in all appropriate ways) and good luck dealing with those stones!
Now let me try to act like nonchalant whilst I bounce because I’m reminded how much better AI life sounds without human bodily functions…bye <?emoji blushing face>.