Do Waterproof Cast Covers Really Work?

Kid in swimming pool wearing a cast cover
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Whether you’re headed to the pool, the beach, or just out for a walk in the rain, waterproof cast covers are often touted as an easy way to keep traditional orthopedic casts safe and dry. But do they really work? Let's take a look at the science behind cast covers and find out.

In this blog post, we will provide tips on how to care for your waterproof cast cover and stay active while wearing it. Plus, if you're looking for a cast that will allow you to live your 21st-century lifestyle, we will introduce the next generation of cast alternatives— no cast cover necessary!  

What Are Waterproof Cast Covers? 

A waterproof cast cover is a thin, waterproof sleeve made from durable, water-resistant material designed to slip over a plaster or fiberglass cast and create a tight seal, preventing moisture from seeping in. Waterproof cast protectors are a great way to keep your cast dry while you're swimming, showering, or participating in any other water-based activities. 

Do Cast Covers Really Work?

While you may be tempted to use a garbage bag or Saran wrap to protect your cast from water, these materials are not designed to be submerged and can actually cause more harm than good. 

Cast coverings have been shown to be effective in keeping casts dry for short periods of time, such as during a bath or swim. However, long-term exposure to water can still cause the cast to become wet.

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How to Use a Waterproof Cast Cover

Cast covers can effectively keep casts dry if used correctly. Here are a few tips for using a waterproof cast cover:

  • Before applying the waterproof cast cover, make sure your skin is clean and dry.
  • Apply the waterproof cast cover according to the manufacturer's instructions.
  • Once the cover is in place, secure the edges to ensure a tight seal.
  • Test the seal by submerging the covered area in water. If water leaks through, simply reapply the cover and try again. 

How to Choose the Right Waterproof Cast Cover for You

Boy in swimming pool wearing a cast cover
Graphicroyalty - stock.adobe

Whether you're headed to the beach, taking a dip in the pool, or simply caught in a downpour, a cast protector can be a helpful way to keep your cast dry. But with so many options on the market, how do you know which one is right for you? Here are a few things to consider:

The material: is one of the most important factors to consider. Most waterproof cast covers are made from plastic, vinyl, neoprene, or PVC. Choose a cover that will be comfortable for you to wear and won't irritate your skin.

The size: make sure to measure your cast before selecting a cover so that you can choose one that will provide a snug, comfortable fit. To measure for a cast cover, measure from the tip of your middle finger to the top of your cast and add one inch for length, then measure around the thickest part of your cast for circumference.

Reusable: look for a cast cover that is made of durable material that will hold up to repeated use. A good cast cover should be made of sturdy material that can withstand the rigors of daily wear. 

Activity level: there are a variety of different types of cast covers available on the market, each designed for a specific purpose. Some covers are designed for light aquatic activities and will protect your cast from a little bit of water, but if you're planning on swimming or participating in other vigorous water activities, then you'll need a cover that can withstand sustained submersion. 

Your budget: there are covers available at various price points, so find one that fits within your budget. 

How to Care For Your Waterproof Cast Cover

Waterproof cast covers are designed to withstand a certain amount of wear and tear, but they're not indestructible. It's important to take care of your cast cover because if it gets damaged, it will not be able to do its job properly. Here are some tips for how to care for your waterproof cast cover: 

  • Ensure the inside of the cast cover is dry before attempting to put it on. Otherwise, you may end up with a wet cast.
  • Wash the cover regularly with mild soap and warm water. This will help to remove any build-up of dirt and debris. 
  • Do not use harsh chemicals, such as bleach, to clean the cover. These can damage the material and reduce its effectiveness. 
  • Avoid activities that could puncture or tear the cover, such as contact with hard or abrasive surfaces or activities that involve sharp objects. 
  • Check your cast cover regularly for signs of tears or punctures. If you find any damage, replace the cover immediately.
  • Condensation may form on the inside of the cast cover. This is usually not a big deal, but if it starts to get really wet, you should take the cover off and let your cast air out for a bit.
  • After using your cast cover, thoroughly dry it with a bath towel, then set it in a well-ventilated area to air dry.

By following these simple tips, you can help extend the life of your waterproof cast cover.

Dangers of a Wet Cast 

A wet cast can bring a whole host of complications, from fungal infections to skin irritation. When the plaster or fiberglass cast mix gets wet, it can start to break down and weaken the support it provides. It can also become brittle and crack, which can lead to pain and further injury. In addition, a wet cast is much more likely to harbor bacteria, which can cause an infection. And finally, moisture trapped underneath a cast can lead to skin irritation and even sores. So while a wet cast may not seem like a big deal, it's important to be aware of the potential risks. If you do get your cast wet, be sure to see your doctor as soon as possible.

Signs that Your Cast Needs to Be Replaced 

A little girl getting her arm cast replaced
Vasyl - stock.adobe

If a cast gets wet, it can become compromised, which can lead to serious health complications. Therefore, it is important to be aware of the signs that your cast needs to be replaced. If you notice any mold or mildew growing on your cast, or if it starts to smell bad, these are both indicative of moisture accumulation and should be addressed as soon as possible. Additionally, if you notice any redness, swelling, or drainage from the cast, see a doctor as soon as possible. Replacing your cast is essential for protecting your health and ensuring that your broken bone heals properly.

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Tips for Staying Active While Wearing a Waterproof Cast Cover

Being stuck with a cast can feel like the end of the world for an active person. Suddenly, all of your favorite activities are off-limits, and you're left feeling frustrated and bored. However, there are still plenty of fun things to do, even with a cast. For example, you can take a dip in the pool or go for a relaxing float in the hot tub. Yoga and hiking are also great low-impact activities that will get you moving and help you stay in shape. 

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New Waterproof Cast: The Better Alternative to Cast Covers

Cast21 has developed the next generation of waterproof cast alternatives that won't absorb water or become heavy when wet. Made from a lightweight, comfortable material, the orthopedic immobilization net features a unique open lattice design that allows water to flow freely around your limb while still providing support and protection. Unlike traditional casts that can become heavy and uncomfortable when wet, Cast21's cutting-edge product ensures speedy evaporation, keeping your skin dry and free from excessive moisture build-up. So you can finally say goodbye to that itchy, scratchy feeling for good.

Our patented technology is revolutionizing the way people heal, and we're proud to offer a product that can make a difference in people's lives. Whether you're dealing with a broken bone or a simple sprain, our team is here to help you get on the road to recovery. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you get back to doing the things you love.

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