FAQ - Caldera International

Product Information
Return Policy
Gel Packs
Cold Therapy
Heat Therapy
Contact Information
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Caldera International, Inc. and its distributors will not have or assume any financial responsibility or liability for medical expenses or compensation for any injuries resulting from the misuse of Caldera Therapy Wraps and Therapy Gel.

Caldera warrants all products with a guarantee against all manufacturer defects. 

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If you are not satisfied with your purchase you may return the product within 14 calendar days of the delivery date for a full refund according to the following guidelines: 

All returns MUST have been purchased from www.calderaintl.com and returned in sellable condition (new and unused), including original packaging. Any merchandise submitted for return reflecting any kind of use will be returned to the customer with a letter stating why the merchandise will not be accepted. Returns made within 14 calendar days of the delivery date will be issued in the same form as was utilized for payment. 

Refunds will include taxes, but will not include shipping and handling paid for the item, as shipping and handling charges are non-refundable, once an item is shipped. Ship returns to Caldera International 7236 SW Durham Rd., Suite 800 Portland, OR. 97224. You are responsible for the return shipping charges. All returns must include the customer order number and billing name. 

If product was damaged or shipped incorrectly, please call customer service at 1.888.581.1200 to receive a Return Authorization Number and to arrange for a replacement item to be shipped. There will be no charge for shipping on replacement orders.  

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How long does the gel pack stay cold/hot?
The gel pack will stay cold approximately 45 minutes depending on the size of the gel pack and the application it is used for. The gel pack will retain heat between 30 minutes and 1 hour, however, doctors recommend that you use heat or cold for no more than 30 minutes for an adult and 15 minutes for a child. With both cold and heat therapy, you should check the skin area every two minutes for redness or discoloration of the skin and discontinue use if this occurs.

Can I store the product in the freezer all the time?
Yes, you can keep your gel pack in the freezer all the time so it is ready for use in case of injury. We recommend if you are going to do this that you place the product in a large zip lock bag to keep the food smells out and to protect it from contact with sharp objects in the freezer.

Can I place my gel bag directly in the microwave from the freezer?
No, it is recommended that you bring the bag to room temperature first since heating times are based on room temperature. If you will be frequently switching from one extreme to the other, it may be a good idea to have an extra gel bag on hand when needed.

I don't have a microwave - how can heat my gel pack?
You can use hot water. Bring water to the boil then remove from heat. Immerse the gel pack in the hot water for several minutes until it has reached the desired temperature. Please use caution and do not overheat - the gel can get extremely hot!

I suffer from headaches but the gel bag is too cold when I take it out of the freezer, what can I do?
The area around the head and neck contains very little fatty tissue, so if the gel pack is too cold when frozen you could cool it by placing it in the refrigerator instead; this will still provide therapeutic cooling to the area. 

I don't know the wattage of my microwave, how do I know how long to heat it?
Start with the lowest time listed on the gel back, check to see if the gel bag is hot enough, if it needs to be hotter add 10 seconds at a time until it your desired temperature. The next time you heat the gel bag, you can heat it for the total amount of time it took to get the gel bag to your desired temperature.

Can I place the entire product in the microwave?
Yes, the product is manufactured from all microwave safe materials including the fabric sleeve. However, there is a possibility that the fabric sleeve may absorb food smells from the microwave so you may choose to heat the gel bag only and place it in the sleeve after it has been heated.

How do I activate my instant cold pack?
Find the inner liquid pouch inside the instant cold pack and press down hard to burst the liquid inner pouch so it can mix with the granules inside to produce the cold effect. The cooling effect should begin immediately once the liquid and granules are mixed together.

What happens if the gel packs breaks and the gel spills?
The gel is very slippery. Clean up the gel and flush it down the drain with lots of water. If it is allowed to dry and comes into contact with water later, it will absorb the water causing a large quantity of gel.

What if I need a replacement gel pack for my wrap?
The gel packs are inexpensive and replacements are available for all the wraps. You can order a replacement gel pack online or phone/fax/email us.

Can I wash my wrap?
Yes, the wraps can be machine washed in cold water. Remember to keep colors separate. Tumble dry on the low setting. 

The gel bag broke open and it is leaking, how do I clean it?
While the gel materials used are non-toxic and will not harm your furniture or carpet the food grad blue dye can stain. If you need to clean the gel off your furniture or carpet, let it get dry and flaky and you should be able to vacuum it up. The gel material is also water-soluble.

Alternate Option

  1. Scrape off the excess gel pack liquid from the upholstery with a plastic spoon. Discard the gel and spoon in the trash.
  2. Mix four cups of cool water with one scoop of an oxygen cleaning powder until completely dissolved.
  3. Submerge a white cloth in the mixture and wring out the excess liquid. You want the cloth to be damp but not soggy.
  4. Blot the gel pack stain with the upholstery. Blot at the edge of the stain and move toward the middle. Repeat this process until you have removed all signs of the gel pack stain.
  5. Rinse the auto upholstery by patting with a clean cloth dampened with cool water. Allow the upholstery to air dry.
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Cold Therapy
Cold therapy with a frozen Caldera Gel Pack is the best immediate treatment for acute injuries because it reduces swelling and pain. Ice is a vaso-constrictor (it causes the blood vessels to narrow) and it limits internal bleeding at the injury site.

Cold therapy can also help treat some overuse injuries and chronic pain. Use your frozen Caldera Gel Pack to treat an inflamed area after exercise. It's not helpful to ice a chronic injury before exercise. For example, if you have chronic knee pain that gets worse after running, you may want to ice the injury after each run to reduce or prevent inflammation.

Why Cold?
Cold (or iced) therapy is one of the simplest, safest, and most effective self-care techniques for post workout therapy or to treat pain or discomfort in muscles and joints. Cold will decrease muscle spasms, pain, and inflammation of bone and soft tissue. You can use cold initially on the site of discomfort, pain, or injury. You can also apply cold in later stages for rehabilitating injuries or easing chronic problems.

Four Stages of Cold Therapy:
When you apply cold therapy, you'll feel four distinct sensations. Immediately after applying, you'll feel the cold, then you'll feel a burning/prickling sensation in the iced area. Next, you'll feel an aching, which can sometimes hurt more than the initial pain. Eventually, and most importantly, the iced area will feel numb. As soon as you feel numbness, remove the cold therapy. You should apply cold therapy for not longer than 20 to 30 minutes at a time. Before you reapply cold therapy, let your skin return to a normal temperature or back to the aching feeling.

How Does Cold Therapy Work?Cold initially constricts local blood vessels and decreases tissue temperature. This decreases blood flow and cell metabolism, which can limit hemorrhage and cell death in an acute traumatic injury. After about 20 minutes of cold therapy, blood vessels in the injured area slowly dilate (open), increasing the tissue temperature.

When Should You Use Cold Therapy?
For the greatest benefit, use cold therapy after exercise, not before. Studies have shown that cooling a body part prior to athletic performance is probably not a good idea, as the cold may alter joint position, increasing risk of injury.

To most effectively use cold therapy, apply a cold or frozen Caldera Gel Pack to the problem area. You can hold it in place with a Caldera Therapy Wrap.

Can I Use Cold Therapy as A Precaution?
You can use a chilled or frozen Caldera Gel Pack immediately following any workout, or when you feel any discomfort or injury. If the swelling or pain doesn't decrease within 24 to 48 hours, you should consult your doctor.

Is Cold Therapy Safe?
Cold therapy is very safe when used within the recommended application time. Don't apply cold therapy if you have any of the following conditions: rheumatoid arthritis, Reynaud's Syndrome, allergies, paralysis, or areas of impaired sensation (nerve damage).

Remember, because some injuries can be serious, you should see your doctor if your injury doesn't improve or if it gets worse after 48 hours.

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Heat Therapy
Heat is generally used for chronic injuries or injuries that have no inflammation or swelling. Heat therapy is ideal for soreness, stiffness, or nagging muscle or joint pain.

Use your heated Caldera Gel Pack before exercise to increase the elasticity of joint connective tissues and to stimulate blood flow. Heat can also help with muscle spasms.

Do not apply heat after exercise.

Because heat increases circulation and raises skin temperature, you shouldn't apply heat to acute injuries or injuries that show signs of inflammation.

Why Heat?
Heat therapy opens blood vessels and increases blood flow, which helps deliver oxygen and nutrients to muscles and tissues. It also relaxes the muscles and helps reduce pain in the affected area. Heat therapy is generally used for stiff muscles and chronic pain. It can also be used for more acute problems, such as incipient respiratory infection, bronchitis, asthma, circulatory problems, and lung disease. Heat therapy is also effective in treating cramps, muscle pain, gastric and duodenal ulcers, and rheumatoid arthritis and arthrosis.

Heat therapy is generally applied as a Caldera Gel Pack, a compress like a Caldera Therapy Wrap, a sauna, a shower or a bath. When you use heat therapy, always exercise caution and make sure the temperature is comfortable. Don't use heat therapy over open wounds or stitches or if you have poor circulation. Heat treatment should not last more than thirty minutes.

Benefits of Heat Therapy For Lower Back Pain:
While warmth and heat have long been associated with comfort and relaxation, heat therapy can also provide pain relief and healing benefits for many types of lower back pain. And heat therapy offers several other significant benefits-it's inexpensive and can be done at home while relaxing. Caldera's Therapy Wraps even make it possible to apply heat therapy while in the car or at work.

How Heat Therapy Works:
Lower back pain due to strains and over-exertion creates tension in the muscles and soft tissues around the lower spine. This restricts proper circulation and sends pain signals to the brain. Muscle spasm in the lower back can create sensations ranging from mild discomfort to excruciating pain. Heat therapy can help relieve pain from the muscle spasm and related tightness in the lower back. Applying heat therapy can help provide lower back pain relief in several ways:

  • It dilates blood vessels of the muscles surrounding the lumbar spine. This increases the flow of oxygen and nutrients to the muscles, helping heal the damaged tissue;
  • It stimulates the sensory receptors in the skin, so applying heat to the lower back will decrease transmission of pain signals to the brain and partially relieve discomfort; and,
  • It helps stretch the soft tissues around the spine, including muscles, connective tissue and adhesions. Consequently, there will be a decrease in stiffness and injury, and an increase in flexibility and overall feeling of comfort. Flexibility is very important for a healthy back.
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Exercise is good for your health, but can also raise your risk of sprained joints and muscles and other minor injuries. You can reduce your recovery time if you care for injuries in the first day or two after an injury happens. If you suffer a strain, sprain, pull, tear or other muscle or joint injury, treat it with the R.I.C.E. method: Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation. This routine can relieve pain, limit swelling, protect the injured tissue, and will help speed healing.

The R.I.C.E. method for acute injury treatment includes:

  1. Rest: it's important to rest after injury for two reasons. First, rest is vital to protect the injured muscle, tendon, ligament or other tissue from further injury. Second, the rest will help your body have the energy it needs to heal itself most effectively.
  2. Ice: use frozen or cold Caldera Gel Packs on the injured area. The cold can provide short-term pain relief, and limits swelling by reducing blood flow to the injured area. Apply the cold Gel Pack for 20 minutes and then take it off for 20 minutes. Repeat as necessary.
  3. Compression: use a Caldera Therapy Wrap to compress the injured area. This can provide relief from pain. If you feel throbbing or if the wrap feels too tight, loosen the wrap.
  4. Elevation: elevate the injured area to help reduce swelling. Raise the injured area above the heart for maximum effectiveness. For example, if you injure an ankle, try lying on your bed with your foot propped on one or two pillows.

After a day or two of R.I.C.E., many sprains, strains or other injuries will begin to heal. However, if your pain or swelling doesn't decrease after 48 hours see your doctor or go to an emergency room if the symptoms are very severe.

Once your injury starts healing, you can lightly massage the area to cut the healing time, and potentially reduce scarring and the possibility the injury will happen again. Once the swelling is gone, you can also begin gentle stretching of the area. Try to work the entire range of motion of the injured joint or muscle, but don't force a stretch-you'll risk reinjures. Keep in mind that a stretch should never cause pain. Also, at this point you may want to apply heat to the area-simply heat up and apply your Caldera Gel Pack. Finally, after the injury has fully healed, you can begin strengthening exercises. Start with easy weights and don't continue if you feel pain.

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We want to hear from you! Our primary focus is improving the lives of our customers. We want your suggestions as we continue to expand and diversify our product lines. We invite you to send your comments to us at: service@calderaintl.com

Phone: 1.888.581.1200
Local: 503.350.1340
Fax: 503.350.1343

7236 SW Durham Rd. Suite 800
Portland, OR 97224-7568