After my crash, I needed one arm put in plaster. Well, the hospital wanted both arms in plaster, but I wasn’t up for that idea. There are many problems that are presented when having an arm in plaster, or indeed, any limb, and one of those problems is how to wash yourself. You’re not allowed to get the plaster cast wet, you see.
Most people start off with a plastic shopping bag and an elastic band (or in our case, a hair bobble, volunteered by one of my daughters). It’s enough to protect your plaster cast if you’re really careful, but it’s not really a good long term solution.
Instead, the wife suggested she get me a LimbO, which is basically a bag with an elasticated end. Much like a Tesco shopping bag with an elastic band, I thought. How good would that be?
Answer: much better than expected. Yes, this is basically a plastic bag with an elastic band on the end, but this thing has clearly been properly designed.
Firstly, they come in a range of sizes. I’m an athletically built person, so you’re not going to find people that much thinner than I am, and I was initially thinking the thing was going to be massive. But it wasn’t – we ordered the smallest size, and it was perfect. They also do different sizes for arms and legs, so don’t go thinking that you’ll get something massively long to fit your leg when you only need it for your arm. Double bonus.
But the best thing about the LimbO was the elasticated bit. Unbelievably, it clings to your arm and prevents water getting into it, but doesn’t hurt in the slightest and leaves no mark on you. It’s really quite extraordinary. I had expected one or the other, but this thing clings to your arm really well and I never had a single drop of water get inside the thing despite using it in the shower on a daily basis.
Arm in LimbO
According to the instructions, you can even use this thing in the swimming pool. And I can believe it, although I didn’t try it. Therefore, I figure this means that the makers are confident that, even fully submerged, you’re going to have a completely waterproof covering of your plaster cast.
One way that I was able to get a really good feeling that this thing was going to work was when I put it on, and discovered that there was loads of air trapped inside. I waited a few seconds, and it stayed the same, just like a balloon that had been blown up. Getting rid of the air is easy; you just pull the end open a little, press the LimbO to eject the air, and then let go of the end. Air gone, and no more air can get inside.
Any issues with it? Well, the only real issue is that you now have a bag between your hand and whatever you are trying to hold on to (soap, sponge, shampoo bottle etc). But let’s be honest – what else is going to be possible? You need your hand covered if you want your cast covered, so you just have to get on with it. On a scale of 1 to 10 for this being annoying, it’s a 1 – not really annoying at all. The fact you can shower without having to constantly worry about whether your Tesco bag is letting water slide through is a massive bonus.
So if you’re looking for something to keep your cast dry when you need to get wet, the LimbO gets my vote.