Everything You Need to Know About Arm Casts

Man wearing Cast21 waterproof arm cast alternative
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If you’ve ever broken your arm, you know that the recovery process can be quite tedious. And traditional casting methods can be uncomfortable and inconvenient. 

Until recently, traditional casts have been the best option available for those who need immobilization. However, thanks to advances in medical technology, there is a new type of waterproof arm cast alternative that may be even better for you than a traditional arm cast. 

In this blog post, we’ll explain exactly what is happening when you get a traditional cast, how it works to help your bones heal, and the different types of casts available. Here's everything you need to know about arm casts: 

What are Arm Casts and What Do They Do for the Injured Arm?

Man with an arm cast for an arm injury.
topten22photo - stock.adobe.com

An arm cast is a type of medical device that helps to immobilize and protect an injured or fractured arm. The purpose of an arm cast is to keep the broken bone in place so that it can heal properly. Depending on the severity of the injury, an arm cast may be worn for anywhere from several weeks to several months.

Uses of an Arm Cast

Arm casts can be used for a variety of different injuries and conditions. The most common use is when an individual breaks a bone, but they can also be used for other injuries, such as burns or skin grafts. 

How Does a Traditional Arm Cast Work?

A traditional arm cast works by holding the broken bone in place so that it can heal properly. Many regular arm casts are made up of two parts: an inner layer and an outer layer. 

The inner layer is made of soft, padded material that helps to keep the arm comfortable. The outer layer is made of hard, durable plaster or fiberglass that helps to keep the arm in place. Traditional casts can be heavy, cumbersome, and hot – but until recently, they have been the best practice for healing a broken bone. 

Different Types of Arm Casts Available

Arm casts come in different shapes and sizes, depending on the injury. They can be made of plaster, fiberglass, synthetic material or they can be 3D printed. Some arm casts are waterproof and can be worn while showering or swimming. 

As technology evolves, there is a new way to heal broken bones that is much lighter, completely waterproof, and more convenient than the traditional cast. 

Plaster Cast

A child broken arm in plaster case, hand injury because of accident, forearm bones fracture
ReaLiia - stock.adobe.com

Plaster arm casts are the most common type of cast. They have been around for a long time and are still used today to help heal broken bones. Made up of two layers, an inner layer of cotton bandage and an outer layer of plaster, this type of cast takes a long time to apply and remove, but they can be custom-fit to your arm. 

A plaster arm cast can be an effective way to treat certain types of fractures, but they have limitations, making them less than desirable. For instance, plaster casts can quickly become uncomfortable and heavy. They can cause skin irritation, make you have itchy skin, and cause unpleasant odors. Traditional plaster casts are also not waterproof, so you will need to be careful not to get them wet.

Fiberglass Cast

Closeup of Asian man's arm with long arm plaster, fiberglass cast therapy cover by blue elastic bandage after sport injury.
Amphon - stock.adobe/com

Fiberglass arm casting can be a superior choice over plaster casts when it comes to healing broken bones. Fiberglass casts are made up of three layers, an inner layer of stockinette, followed by a cotton bandage, and an outer layer of fiberglass. 

Fiberglass is lighter than plaster and it is porous, allowing airflow and reducing the risk of skin irritation. Fiberglass arm casts are also stronger and more durable than plaster casts, but they can still be difficult to apply and remove. Fiberglass casts are also not waterproof, so don’t try to take them swimming. 

Waterproof Casts

The difference between a regular cast and waterproof is that waterproof arm casts are made of a special material that doesn’t absorb water. Instead of a cotton bandage, the inner layer is constructed with a non-absorbent medical-grade material and an outer layer of fiberglass. 

Waterproof casts can provide a better option for people who have broken their arm because it can reduce the risk of skin irritation caused by bacteria if used properly. 

And even though waterproof arm casts are more expensive than traditional plaster or fiberglass casts, they offer the added benefit of being able to get the arm wet. This means that you can shower and swim while wearing a cast for your broken arm. 

3D Printed Cast

A three-dimensional (3D) printed cast is a type of medical device that has been printed using a 3D printer. 3D printed casts are more expensive than traditional plaster or fiberglass casts, are not always offered at every doctor's office, and may not be covered by your insurance. But they offer the added benefit of being waterproof and custom-fit to your arm. 

Cast21 Waterproof Cast Alternative

A young boy in a swimming pool wearing Cast21 waterproof arm cast alternative for broken bones.

Thanks to advances in medical technology, it is now possible to have an alternative to waterproof arm casts designed to provide the same level of protection without all the bulk. 

Cast21's immobilization net is an orthopedic innovation made of a unique type of quick-setting resin that replaces traditional waterproof arm casts. It is made for the 21st-century lifestyle and is the only product of its kind that is FDA-listed, comfortable to wear, and completely waterproof. Plus it's available in a variety of colors to suit your style. 

Benefits of Cast21's immobilization net:

  • It can be worn in any kind of water. There is no need to worry about getting your cast wet.
  • It is lightweight and comfortable to wear. You won't even know it's there.
  • The breathable open lattice structure is less itchy and more comfortable for your skin than a traditional cast.
  • Cast21 may be covered by your insurance. Learn about your payment options by discussing them with your healthcare provider. 

If you or someone you know has broken an arm, ask your doctor if the Cast21 immobilization net is right for you. 

Choosing an Arm Cast

While there are many different types of arm casts on the market, not all of them are created equally.

Traditional plaster and fiberglass arm casts can be very heavy, hot, and restrictive- not to mention they can get wet and dirty easily. Waterproof casts are a better option for those wanting to enjoy an active lifestyle, and although 3D casts offer the best lightweight and waterproof cast option, they are not always available at every doctor's office. 

Cast21 is a waterproof cast alternative that is made for the 21st-century lifestyle. It is perfect for those who lead active lives and don't want to be limited by a traditional arm cast. Cast21 offers the same healing benefits as a traditional cast, but it is made of lightweight materials that are comfortable and easy to wear. 

What are your thoughts on this new waterproof cast alternative? 

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us or request a sample by filling out our contact form. We have a team of experts who are happy to help.