Hot water bottles and the elderly
Hot water bottles have been in existence since the 16th century. Hot coals from the embers of the fire were used in the earliest versions and used to warm the bed before use. Later came the earthenware hot water containers which had the advantage of being able to remain in the bed with the occupant. Following the invention of rubber hot water bottles became common place household items.
If someone elderly still uses a rubber one, please check that neither the bottle or the seal have perished.
Not only used to warm the bed, hot water bottles have been used to ease aches and pains and provide a soothing alternative to medication.It has also been said that hot water bottles can also aid the cleansing of the liver!
The advent of microwaves saw a new range of water free hot water bags. Filled with wheat they are heated in the microwave and avoid the risk of scalding from hot water as is the case with some of the rubberised ones. These are also a wonderful gift ideas for an elderly person for whom managing a boiling hot kettle is dangerous. These wheat bags are available either plain or in novelty styles such as animals or dolls etc. My personal favourite for Christmas is this little cutie.
Word of Caution! Ensure the wheat bags are only heated in accordance with the manufacturers instructions as they have been known to cause fires.
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