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Feeling heat

ezraeezra Posts: 72
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:48 AM in Chronic Pain
I just saw someone post something about a boiling bath and it made me think of a question.

I use heating pads and hot baths often for pain but I find that unless it is scorching hot to other parts of my body I can't feel it on my back. Like a bath, it has to burn my body for it to feel comfortable on my back. So my question is, is anyone else this way? Do you know what it means, it is actually something I never thought to talk to my dr about?


  • My unedumecated guess would be that our painful area (be it neck, back or leg, etc) is already warmer than the rest of our bodies due to the inflammation, therefore it takes a higher temperature of water to affect it?
    APROUD CANADIANveteranButNOTa doctor, my thoughts are my own
  • Or could it be that the nerve endings are already messed up so they don't feel the heat the way they should? Just taking a guess.
  • have to have a fan on me nearly all the time its worse when the pain is bad
  • Ron has posted on here about the burns he received on his back without even knowing it. They had to do all kinds of cleanup work to his back if I recall correctly.

    I have the opposite problem as I can face into the shower with it set very hot, I have to turn it to cold when I turn around then creep the hot water back up to get any heat/relief from a nice hot shower.
  • Wrambler, you're right, Ron has talked about that. I believe it happened when he fell asleep on his back and left a heating pad on. He woke up with severe burns - it never even woke him up.

    So, certainly be careful of where and what you can and cannot feel and be mindful of it.

  • I burnt my back though not severe from a hot water bottle. It's like it couldn't get hot enough to do any good. I went to the Massage Therapist who said there you go you burnt your back! I bought an infrared platinum heating pad for heat relief. It penetrates 2-1/2" in your muscles. And I don't work for the company. Not to be used with a SCS. Ask your Dr. if you have instrumentation. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • Thank you for the advice, I will be careful. I will also look up that heating pad.
  • I love my heating pad and almost always fall to sleep with it on. It automatically shuts itself off after two hours. I find it real interesting on this site though that about half of us love heat and the other half love ice. Ice makes me spasm and I hate it! But, my heating pad is always right by my side. And yes, I too, take those scalding hot baths...so much they turn my fair skin red.
  • I have the same issues. Since my surgery(ALIF & ADR) I have reduced sensation in my lower back. Use of the tends unit and heat is always increased. My therapist also noticed it becuase they hooked me up to their machine and jacked it up farther for me than most of their patients. It's really odd considering that my surgery was done from the front.Weird!!!!
  • sunny1966ssunny1966 VIRGINIAPosts: 1,385
    My neck/shoulders must be less heat sensitive than other areas. My husband rubs icy hot and such on my neck/shoulders and then complains of it burning his hands and I never even feel it! Maybe I've just built up a tolerance of some sort since using heat pads and stuff for so long? Then again, the skin on those areas will sometimes feel scalded, sore, sensitive, even painful to touch (even when I haven't put anything on it). Strange.

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