4 hot summer tips for people with an artificial limb (ugh, sweat!)
Officially, summer has only just begun, but it’s already in full swing! Sun, sea, sand and ice cream, what’s not to love? Unfortunately, sweat is never far away when the weather heats up... So how do you deal with sweat if you wear an artificial limb?
For many amputees, sweat is public enemy number one. After all, sweat can lead to nasty wounds and blisters and tends to be incredibly uncomfortable. Unfortunately, there’s just no way to escape it in the summer. That’s why we’ve lined up four tips for you to help you enjoy the summer despite the sweat!
Bring extra socks
Do you wear a sock over your residual limb? Make sure to bring a bag with spare socks and some small towels so you can freshen up when needed. This emergency bag will also come in handy if all your sweating causes your residual limb to shrink during the day and your socket doesn’t fit perfectly any more. Putting on an extra sock will prevent your socket from budging and will help you avoid nasty blisters or wounds.
Dry and clean your residual limb regularly
Remove your artificial limb several times a day and dry off your residual limb, liner and suspension system (if you use one) with a dry towel. If you brought a spare liner, put on the clean liner, dry and clean the used liner and put it away. If you don’t have a clean liner with you, clean your used liner and dry it off properly before putting it back on again. Sweat isn’t just uncomfortable, it’s also the perfect breeding ground for bacteria. And that’s the last thing you want.
Use an antiperspirant to prevent sweat
Before taking this tip to heart, it’s best to consult your doctor first. If you’re a recent amputee, you’re more at risk of developing skin damage. Antiperspirant can help reduce sweating, and thus help prevent skin damage. Your doctor may prescribe or recommend specific products, such as sprays that you use at night or before you put on your liner. Also, don't forget to ask your O&P professional if the recommended antiperspirant can be used with your liner.
Wash your liner thoroughly and often
Your O&P professional has probably told you this a million times. And for good reason! Summer is the perfect time to really start listening to your O&P professional, because the last thing you want is for your liner to become a breeding ground for bacteria. So wash and dry your liner carefully!