View Full Version : Heat Rash and Scoliosis brace wearers

05-16-2011, 07:37 PM
My 8 yr old daughter has Scoliosis and wears a Boston Brace 22 hrs a day. She got her brace last summer so was just transitioning into it and not wearing it full time at school. She was in an air conditioned house most of the summer.
I have been noticing as the weather is warming so is she in her brace and is getting a heat type rash. She is hot and sweaty when she gets home from school.
I was wondering if anyone else has had this happen. If so hat did you do to help and prevent it from happening. Dermatologist gave us a 1% cortizone cream prescript but I am not too keen on putting this on her torso and back all summer long.
Any help or tips from you guys would make a very concerned mother happy.
She has such a long way to go in this darn thing and I would like it to be as painless and non irratating as possible. She wears it with no complaints and now to see this happening to her skin on her little body is making me so sad.
I just want to know if this is a common thing to have happen in warm weather.

05-17-2011, 12:12 AM
My daughter get's heat rash sometimes too and here's the tips I have:

Our orthotist cut air holes in the brace. Have her change her undershirt if it is ever damp, ideally, washing her torso and letting it and the brace air out a bit before putting it back on. spray the inside of the brace with rubbing alcohol and wipe with a towel daily. we use 1% hydrocortisone too as needed, not too often. it will calm down the rash quickly. Also, Aveeno Oatmeal packets, not lotion. dump a packet into the bath if your child will soak in the tub, otherwise just use part of the packet in the sink and a washcloth. very helpful and totally safe for a heat rash. we use this too.

hope this helps. my husband and I were just talking about installing AC in our house for the summer that lies ahead of us, it will be her first with the brace.

05-17-2011, 07:45 AM
thanks for your reply, actually I think I was looking for you, since your daughter is the same age as my daughter. Awhile back about being penpals.
Anywys I did ask about drilling holes, they said no, but I think I will try again.
I am gonna go to walmart for tht aveeno stuff and fill the prescrpt too I suppose. Boy do they have a long road ahead. I am out in Canada so we do not have tht other surgical option tht you have frm Shriners. Our doctors have been looing into it, but nothing yet in Canada.
I posted to one of your posts yesterday when you post me about asking your daughter back in January.Let me know can send our e-mail, my daughter also has an e-mail for friends and family tht we watch her use. Just makes her feel normal since so many things are not.

05-17-2011, 08:22 AM
i just sent you a private message w email info.

05-17-2011, 04:38 PM
Hi mommycat, G wore her brace in the VA heat for an entire summer, including for many hours at a time at a non-air conditioned barn, riding and running around with her compadres. She did get rashes sometimes but I agree with a lot of the above--we always sent her with an extra undershirt (not really sure she ever changed it), had her shower off after a sweaty day, and we used an over the counter hydrocortisone pump spray for topical relief as necessary. It was much easier to apply than rubbing cream and once it dries does not feel moist like cream sometimes does. It was also recommended to me to use corn starch on the body (as an absorbent) (not baby powder), but we never felt the need to do that.

05-19-2011, 08:35 AM
Thanks for your reply.
The pump spray sounds interesting, I will have to look for some. I did however find some cornstarch powder and we have used it while she goes off to school, since I cannot get her into shower and anew shirt till she gets home.
We will see how this goes once it really starts getting hot out. I was also told to double rinsr her t's she wears under her brace when washing too.
As of right now my daughter can get OUT of her brace but not back into it without me helping her. Her tiny arms are just not strong enough to do it on her own yet.
I do hope as she gets older and bigger this can all be done by herself.
She is very small and petite for her age. The smallest in her class body wise but not length. She is growing taller quite a bit actually, which is kinda scary cuz this is when her curves can get worse.
Thanks again.

05-19-2011, 08:50 AM
Is she wearing a front closure brace, or a back closure? If the back, she might not be able to do that herself at all--I don't know how they work exactly. If it's front closure, don't worry she'll get there. Have her put it on lying down, if she's not doing that already, as that will be easier for her to tighten. I did G's brace straps for the first couple of weeks and then she just told me one day I was no longer needed, and I just checked that she got them to the marks for a bit. This will all get easier as you find the things that work for you and your daughter, and after a while you won't even be thinking about any of this any more. She'll just put her brace on and off she goes...

Also, are you air drying her undershirts, or putting them in the dryer? I know the brace specific shirts say not to dry them in the dryer but I have been doing that for 2 years with no problem. Haven't had to replace even one. They come out soft that way. I find that air drying gives things a rougher feel...

05-19-2011, 07:05 PM
Hers is a front closure one, but its so skinny and slender fitting its very tight , she cannot pull it open enough to get it on. Even I have to use my arm muscles to pull it wide enough for her to slither into. Like I said she gets out great but not it.
I actually air dry her shirts. Do they shrink if you put them in the dryer?
My daughter is way tiny and doesn't have much strength in her arms. She'll get there some day.

05-19-2011, 08:02 PM
I have not found that they shrink. G has been wearing the same shirts since she was 6 years old. In the beginning I cold washed them and air dryed them but I got tired of the bother and I found them rough to the touch so I just started throwing them in with the regular laundry (no special wash), and drying them with the regular laundry and they have held up fine. I think after a little while of the summer heat and rashes her skin may acclimate--G definitely had a lot of rashes in the beginning of the summer and they concerned me, and then they tapered off rapidly. We also did have holes (a lot of them) put in her brace. That was not a big deal at all (was encouraged in fact) with the type of brace we use but I understand that many (most?) Boston brace makers are unwilling to do that.

Wow, I just realized after writing that that we are going on 3 years of bracing...I have 2 years stuck in my head...time flies

05-19-2011, 08:57 PM
Hi there,

Our orthotist was happy to put air holes in both Leah's Boston and Providence braces.

She had some trouble with heat rash at first. I put a light misting of Benadryl spray on the rash at it's worst, and made sure and wipe her brace out with plenty of rubbing alcohol 1-2x/day and allowed to air dry. The Benadryl spray is antihistamine rather than steroid (such as cortisone). I wanted to avoid steroid use as much as possible.

I machine washed Leah's brace undershirts and dried them in the dryer without any shrinkage problems.

Good luck!

05-20-2011, 08:49 AM
Oh I never thought the Benadryl Spray I actually have that. It sure would be great if her body aclimatized to the heat for sure.
I have been doing the rubbing alchohol thing, but what exactally does this do besides clean it. (sorry I am dumb here lol)
I think I amy then dry her shirts in the dryer now.
I asked about the holes, they said they could but because her brace is so form fitting and tight and the fact she has the t-shirt on underneath it wouldn't really make a big difference, since the air still could not flow threw and get to her skin. Hmmm thts wht I was told.
Yes when we start thinking the years it gets kinda crazy especially when they are so young. Like I said this is her first full summer in it, last summer she was home out of school just transitioning into it, so no real heat rash then. Different story this summer.
Thanks everyone for your tips. Hope all your children are doing well.

05-20-2011, 01:22 PM
Go for the holes. The shirt is made of breathable material. The holes will help.

05-20-2011, 01:26 PM
Hi Mommycat,

I would personally think if the orthotist is willing to put in some air holes it couldn't hurt, even if they think it won't help. It is worth a try to increase your daughter's comfort. I had to wear a boston brace in jr high, and we lived in the SF Bay Area (CA) where it's not overly hot or humid, and yet I remember feeling little rivers of sweat running down my back--pretty disgusting!

You are right about the alcohol, it cleans the brace and if the alcohol takes about a minute or so to dry it should kill all the cooties that might contribute to rashes and odors.

I hear you about the daunting idea of years and years of bracing, especially with the statistics not favorable for avoiding fusion in our JIS kids. This, along with our daughter's hatred for the brace (along with our own), is what lead us early on to seek out VBS. I can honestly say that I have no regrets we had Leah stapled. If we were still battling with her about the brace I think our household would be extremely miserable now. Luckily not all children are that resistant to bracing, but ours sure was!

Take care,

05-20-2011, 01:47 PM
unfortunatly we live in Canada and they do not do VBS here as of right now.
Our doctor is not against it, he just wants more statistics and results and such.
I sure hope in the future this procedure becomes available here.