Friday, April 03, 2009
Been a bit since I posted. Too bloody much going. Most of it my own fault I admit, some not. Did quite a bit of research on cooling vests. Amazing the variety out there. Some relatively inexpensive (below 100.00) some stupidly expensive. They run the gambit in how they work. There are vest that require you to be plugged in and carry a gallon water container with you. (Ummm can anyone explain how that system is REMOTELY practical)??? There are vests that would cause damage to your skin it one of the packs/cells ruptured (WHY would anyone risk that)???? Vest with Velcro closures and vests with zipper closures. Vests that look like bullet proof vests and vest that look like Xray protective vests. Decisions, decisions, decisions. It all comes down to cost and personal preference. OK, lets admit it. It ALL comes down to cost. Fortunately I was able to afford to purchase a vest that had all the features I wanted. It's a zipper front, so I didn't have to worry about Velcro tabs popping open. The gel packs WON'T hurt my skin if they rupture. (I think the reason I preferred that is pretty clear). The vest came in a choice of colors so that I was able to get it in a color that won't show through light colored shirts as I intend to wear mine under my clothes so it's not obvious. (I chose a light tan color vs, blue or black). It is form fitting so it's not as bulky. http://www.stacoolvest.com/ is the website for the vest I chose. I worked with Sylvia there and she was great. They also send you a vest only after they talk to you about your measurements. While the vest sizing is S, M, L etc. the size they send is based on your height, weight, chest measurements etc. The other sites you place the order on line without talking to anyone. I figure, if I was going to spend that kind of money I wanted to make sure it fit the FIRST time around. (Great customer service was another reason I purchased this particular vest). There are groups that provide cooling vests for free if you meet certain economic criteria. Your insurance MAY cover a vest as well, so don't forget to explore that option. I didn't go the insurance route because all they would cover is the vest where you have to be plugged in AND carry the huge water container. Which means I wouldn't be able to wear it when I need it. (Outdoors and traveling). If you don't have a cooling vest NOW is the time to get one. BEFORE the weather gets hot. We may not have a lot of control over our disease, but heat tolerance is one area that we CAN have a strong influence over. I choose NOT be be a prisoner of my house this summer. I want to be able to get out and garden, go for a picnic with my husband and maybe even fish this year. I want to be able to be as active as I can be given the limitations I have because of the MS. I know wearing the cooling vest will be me an edge over the heat.