We have all seen those microwave heating pads selling in the stores for big bucks, and I always thought "Boy I wish I knew how to make one" They look so easy to make. So my new friend Wendy gave me the "directions" and it is easy enough to do and so helpful to those of us who get cold easily or have sore muscles.
It's pretty easy to make a wheat bag heating pad. All you need is some strong material like cotton, canvas, or tartan, as long as there's no give in it, so it doesn't stretch. Keep in mind, it needs to be pretty thick so when the wheat is heated (and it gets pretty hot) that you don't burn yourself.
Once you pick your material, cut a square about 18" each side and fold it in half so it's inside out. It will be oblong shape. Stitch down one short side and the long side. A sewing machine works best as you need short stitches close together, so the wheat doesn't come out. If you stitch by hand go over it again to make sure the stitches are tight. Next, turn it the right way in so the seam is on the inside. You will need to buy some Flax seed or Wheat. They need to be the whole kernel. Fill the bag about 1/2 way, then stitch the one side that is left, sealing it tight.
If you are handy with sewing, and don't mind a little extra work, you might want to divide the bag into sections, maybe in 4. Put in 1/4 of your seeds then stitch the bag 1/4 of the way up, drop in another 1/4 of the seeds and stitch those in, repeating for the rest, so you will have 4 compartments full of seeds, instead of one big one. Then you will have seeds fairly distributed throughout your hand made heating pad. This isn't necessary, but a great tip.
At this point, if you desire, you can use essential oils to sprinkle on the material for aromatherapy.
You will need to microwave it for about 2 minutes.
* Please note all microwaves are different, so please "test" it a few times for more or less time to see what works for you. Please use caution when first using it, as it might come out of the microwave very hot. It stays warm for a couple of hours. You can also put these in the fridge/freezer if the cold is better for you.
If you want, you can make these any shape you like. For example, a horseshoe for your neck or a heart for a child to hold when going to sleep, etc. You can make these as big or as small as you desire. Just remember that you are going to need as many seeds as it takes to fill 1/2 the bag. Usually about 1lb is enough for the 18" bags.
These heating pads make great gifts for yourself or for others. They can be reused time and time again.
Good luck making yours.
About The Author: Christine Miserandino is a writer, motivational speaker, and patient advocate from NY. Her writing has been featured in numerous newspapers, magazines, medical newsletters and television media. Check out http://www.ButYouDontLookSick.com to read more of her articles, and to receive her monthly newsletter.
You can also use rice and I like to use close knit terry cloth, it's softer. (06/02/2005)
I have a friend who used a pre-made stuffed animal. She took out part of the body stuffing and replaced it with rice, making it floppy. Mine is a blue Teddy bear. This would be great for kids.
Mary Lynn (07/10/2005)
I posted a site about making heating pads out of deer corn. It was diamondthreadworks.com. Hope this helps because deer corn is cheaper. If you can't use all of it up make heating bags for Christmas presents or hand warmers in the winter. You can use rice if you like, either will work. (08/07/2005)
I made one for myself to use after knee surgery. I used rice and heavy muslin to make mine, and I use it for a cold pack as well as a heating pad. Just pop it into a plastic bag and store it in the freezer until needed.
Harlean from AR (03/28/2007)
I have made the heat bags for years. I use wheat and I add about 3/4 cup of dried Lavender to the wheat. I also advise people when they have used it 10 times, for the next time to heat it with a cup of water to get some moisture back into the wheat.
From Manny in Australia (09/17/2008)
A friend told me of using corn. Take my word. Do not use it. It is a very heavy heating pad. It hurt more then it helped. So thank-you for the better idea. Can anyone tell me which is the lightest? Thanks.
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