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The neck and shoulder muscles can take a beating from day to day activities, but when you add into the mix physical workouts, recovering from an injury or simply wear and tear from our jobs, these muscles can get very tired and worn out quickly. Which can lead to more serious injuries.
Heat is a well known treatment to this and heating pads are often applied after a long day for many people across the globe. By using the best electric heating pads for neck and shoulders specifically, you are increasing your chances of a quicker recovery. Not all heating pads are designed to actually help the shoulders and neck, so it’s important that if you are suffering pain and tension in these areas to look for a electric heating pad suitable to your needs.
Quick Links To Info On This Page
- 1 In A Hurry? See Our #1 Heating Pad On Amazon
- 2 Best Electric Neck Heating Pad By UTK
- 3 Overall, I Love This Electric Heating Pad!
- 4 Sunbeam Neck And Shoulder Heating Pad Review
- 5 Pure Relief By Pure Enrichment Review
- 6 Best Over The Shoulder And Back Heating Pad
- 7 How Do Heating Pads Work For Relieving Pain?
- 8 The Heating Pad Which Is Best For Neck & Shoulder Pain
Types Of Heating Pads
The best kind of heating pad in my opinion is the infrared variety. Infrared is a form of electromagnetic energy which internally heats deeper and more thoroughly than that of a normal heating pad. If you can afford to upgrade to infrared I highly recommend you check out my review of the #1 top rated heating pad.
Furthermore you can find the best of the best when it comes to traditional heating pads just below our top infrared pick. These models are more affordable and do work, just not as well as infrared in my opinion. But we are fully aware that spending $50 or more on a heating pad is simply not achievable for many pain sufferers. So we have done our best to bring you the best of the affordable electric heating pad range.
Best Electric Neck Heating Pad By UTK
Upon doing further research I noticed on amazon.com a happy consumer state that the UTK is “the best heat wrap solution on the market”. I have to say, for the price I most definitely agree. Compared to other $200+ heat wraps, the UTK technology Far Infrared with Jade Stones is incredible value. This is part of the reason why we labelled this model as the best electric neck heating pad in 2018.
Going further than just your typical heating pad, the UTK delivers much more. This heat wrap for the neck and shoulder delivers a combination of jade stone treatment, negative ions and far infrared. It provides an almost unbelievable healing experience for tired and sore muscles. If you think you have tried everything already, think again. The UTK is phenomenal for delivering pain free results.
What I Like/Dislike About The UTK Experience
There’s many things I love about the UTK Infrared heating pad, and not really too much I dislike. Perhaps a included massaging device would be nice. But maybe that is pushing the friendship.
- FDA Approved Medical Devices Class 11a – This means this type of product is mid range risk, so by having an FDA approval means a lot for such a product. If a med to high risk product isn’t approved, then I would be wary.
- The one size fits all approach is a newly added feature to the UTK. Now petite to larger size folks can adjust the wrap to fit snug in the right spot. Unlike some other heating pads, the UTK has a Velcro strap which secures the heating pad in place and doesn’t shift around out of place.
- Far Infrared technology – As previously stated, I think this is the best kind of heat treatment available. Unlike traditional heating pads, you won’t feel the heat reach 120° on the surface. So don’t wait 10 minutes for it to heat up. Infrared works beneath the skin heating internally at the root of the problem. A much more effective method of heat therapy. Think of it like radio waves, but delivering heat internally through the skin without visuals and penetrating far deeper into the core of the muscles to offer a more rewarding healing experience.
- Love the handy little LED controller that comes with the UTK. You can control the temperature in 1°f increments which is pretty precise. The temperature range is from 103 to 159°f. There is a safety shut off to prevent burning out which occurs after 4 hours. Which is quite useful to prevent voiding the 12 month warranty.
Overall, I Love This Electric Heating Pad!
While this is not a specific UTK review page, I could go on and on about how great this heat wrap is, especially for the neck and shoulders. But I need to discuss further models to give you more choices. So concluding this mini review, I rate the UTK as simply the best there is.
While it is a tad expensive, it’s still is much cheaper than some of the high end electric heating pads but offers just as much. Which is why I think many people will also love the UTK, it’s super high quality and at an affordable price. Just so you know, the UTK infrared heating pad is radiation and EMF free while the padded luxurious pu leather uses nontoxic cotton.
Sunbeam Neck And Shoulder Heating Pad Review
The Best Moist And Dry Heating Pad
First things first, if you have an pacemaker, ICD or internal insulin pump don’t use the Sunbeam Renue neck and shoulder heated pad. It contains magnets as as clasping device to ensure the device sits firmly around your neck.
Moving away from infrared therapy, welcome to the top rated Sunbeam Renue electric heating wrap. This device is considerably cheaper than the more advanced infrared device, but still offers great value for your money.
Here’s Whats To Love About The Sunbeam Renue
- The fabric is super soft and cuddly, which only matters to those who like to snuggle. However, there is another advantage to this padded fabric – It’s machine washable!. This is great news for frequent users, especially those that sweat a lot. The handheld controller must be disconnected first before washing. This is simple to do, just unplug the cord form the fabric and your good to go.
- The Sunbeam neck and shoulder heated pad is electric with a extra long cord (About 6 foot). Makes it perfect for sitting in front of the couch and relaxing while watching TV.
- Two types of heat therapy with 4 settings (Warm, low, medium, high) can be performed from the one device which is very handy. Dry heat which is standard, but you can also use moist heat therapy. Suffers of Frozen Shoulder will greatly benefit from using the moist heat therapy. To use the moist therapy option its as simple as either spraying some water onto the Renue pad, or tapping water on with another pad. Don’t submerge the pad under water in any circumstance!. Just moisten the pad slightly.
- Built for the neck and shoulder specifically. Thanks to the design of the Sunbeam Renue, this heating pad won’t fall off when you bend over or turn your head to one side. This model is specific to hanging around the neck and resting on the shoulders. The magnets hold the Renue around the neck like a collar, while there are beads used in the outer material to weigh the material into your body and prevent it from slipping.
Wrapping Up The Sunbeam Renue Neck & Shoulder Heated Wrap
When it comes to bang for your buck, I found this Sunbeam heat pad delivers beyond expectations. Having the ability to hang it firmly on my neck and shoulders without dislodging it is a huge positive. While in saying this, the magnetic clip/button does press up against the front of the neck. Which is a little annoying. Other than that, I couldn’t recommend the Sunbeam more if you are against the Infrared variety of heating pads and are looking for a good old fashioned value for money heat pad.
Pure Relief By Pure Enrichment Review
Comparing Heat & Moist Heat Pads
When comparing electric neck and shoulder heating pads, there were two that stood out from the crowd. That being the Pure Relief by Pure Enrichment and the Sunbeam Renue (Above). Very similar designs and features and both boasting attractive price tags. Both models even have the same dimensions in regards to size. However, Sunbeam has an XL Renue version which covers 25″ x 25″ in comparison to the ordinary Renue and this Pure Relief 14″ x 22″. So which one is better?.
There are a few slight differences between the Sunbeam Renue and the Pure Relief. The most notable being the 9 foot cord of the Pure Relief. This cord is long!. I doubt you will run into and shortage problems with the Pure Relief. In regards to warranty, the Pure Relief offers a 5 year limited warranty and I couldn’t get a direct answer on the Sunbeam version. The XL Renue has 2 years, but for the standard Renue I am not sure.
Both models have magnets, are machine washable and a 2 hour safety shut off feature. The Pure Relief is made from Micro Mink fabric which is basically an artificial fabric designed to feel like the more expensive mink. Which is often used to make those cute and cuddly baby blankets. So very comfortable to hang around your neck and shoulders.
In regards to heat, I found the Pure Relief electric heating pad to heat up the quickest. In just a few seconds you can feel the temperature rising. Like all Sunbeam heating pads, the Pure Relief has a maximum temperature of 140°, much like the Sunbeam Renue.
Best Over The Shoulder And Back Heating Pad
Going that step further with an over the shoulder heating pad that also warms your back is ideal when you experience back pain as well as neck and shoulder stiffness. From my experience there is non better than the FitFirst Large Heat Pad With Massage.
The FitFirst heating pad is unique in that it also offers a soothing vibration massage to the neck and shoulder areas. While also offering heat that extends all the way down to your lower back. Considering the price, it makes sense to buy this pad over any other traditional neck and shoulder heat wrap. You can see the latest price on amazon here.
I love to use the FitFirst when relaxing on the sofa watching TV or when working behind the desk. It;’s very easy to throw over the shoulder, turn on and simply lay back and relax. While also relieving typical neck and lower back strains from working behind a computer for hours on end.
A Little About This Over The Shoulder Heat Pad
- 2 temperature settings; 131°F which takes about 10 minutes to reach and 158°F which takes about 30 minutes to reach full temperature. For the most part I leave it on the highest setting and gently warm into it.
- Contains 2 vibration massagers in the shoulder region which pulses out massages that can be felt up to the neck. This helps circulate blood greater than just heat alone. Plus it feels just right. Not too soft that I can’t feel it and not too intrusive that I can’t concentrate.
- When my back gets sore from leaning over the desk, I simply lay back on the over the back heating pad and relax for a few minutes. Works a treat every time.
- The flannel heating pad cover is washable and feels very nice and snug against my back. Even when turned off without the heating source it still makes me feel relaxed.
- The FitFirst get high fives for including a really long cord. It’s over 9 foot long which is an extra 3 feet compared to regular cords. This allows me more freedom as to where I can relax with it on my back.
- Comes with two safety cut off times. 15 minute auto shut off for vibration and a 2 hour shut off when using the heat feature. The massage and heat can be used independently of each other. So if you just want to heat your neck, back and shoulder it’s completely possible.
- Very simple remote even my kids can use. It has 2 buttons that control the whole heating pad
Is The FitFirst Worth Buying?
From my experiences with he FitFirst, I really can’t fault the product. With the option to turn massage off, it really is one of the best heating pads for over the back and shoulders. Why just heat the neck and shoulders when you can relieve back strain at the same time. That’s how I think of it.
This also makes it a great body warmer for cold winter days. Great for when you first wake up and need to defrost. Put the kettle on while the heat pad is gently warming up your upper half. Because it’s so effective and soft and cuddly, it makes the perfect heating pad for most occasions.
How Do Heating Pads Work For Relieving Pain?
Using heat to treat conditions like muscle aches, fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis, pinched nerves, chronic stiff neck, frozen shoulder etc is nothing new. But as technology evolves, so do the ways we can use heat to treat this discomfort. However, the problem is that heat typically only temporarily resolves the issue. Further treatment like massage therapy may be necessary. Therefor the combination of heat and massage devices for neck and shoulders have been an advancement in heat treatment.
Inside the human body are receptors, in particular the heat receptor called TRPV1. When the heat receptors are heated to over 104°f they can block the pain receptors known as P2X3. This is essentially turning the switch off on pain in that area. But again this is only temporary, but it is a temporary relief from excruciating pain we all need at times. So if I can get 30 minutes of pain free time, you bet I’m willing to pay big dollars for it.
Compare The Types Of Heat
Long Term Benefits Of Using A Heating Pad
People that get stiff and sore shoulders and or neck will usually find it’s not a once off occurrence. So buy investing in a heating pad that you can use on a daily basis you can be sure to have relief on hand 24/7.
When the muscles in your neck and shoulders get stiff, sore, constricted and even a pinched nerve, they are deprived of the essential nutrients your body needs to self heal. So not only do you feel the ‘nice and relaxed’ feeling a heating pad can offer, you also can benefit long term from pro longed use. However, it’s recommended to switch off your heat pad every 20-30 minutes for safety precautions.
When you are applying heat to your body, the blood vessels widen. Inside these blood vessels are red blood cells which are essential for healing. So when you have a pulled muscle for example, the blood vessel becomes more narrow. This deprives the area and nerves of blood. The nerves send pain signals to the brain and this is why you feel discomfort.
So by using a device like a heat pad, you are essentially creating great blood circulation to the affected areas. With greater blood circulation comes the ever important oxygen and self healing nutrients/proteins needed to relieve the stiff and sore neck and shoulder muscles.
The Heating Pad Which Is Best For Neck & Shoulder Pain
As briefly mentioned at the top, infrared heating pads are without a doubt the best kind of heat you can apply to your neck and shoulders. If you are unsure as to the benefits of infrared, let me give you a quick run down.
Infrared is an invisible energy from sources like the sun. While invisible to the naked eye, infrared has the highest heating attributes in terms heating the human body. It’s the warmth from the sun without the dangerous UV rays associated with the sun. Since being accidentally discovered in the 1800, inventors and scientists have continually invested into today’s infrared technology and the benefits we can obtain from it.
The main benefit of using a infrared heating pad for your neck and shoulders is that it can penetrate up to 2 inches deep into your muscles and joints. Compare this to a traditional heat pad that pretty much heats the skin and a couple mm beneath.
Infrared works by internally heating your muscles and not your skin. So you don’t ‘burn’ yourself like with traditional heat. By heating the body core up to 2 inches deep into your muscles means you get greater blood circulation and faster results. Infrared can also boost the immune system by detoxifying toxins. For massage relief, try out infrared massaging devices to experience relief and relaxation like never before.