Carpal/ulnar tunnel issues | The Canadian Guitar Forum

Carpal/ulnar tunnel issues

Discussion in 'Theory and Technique' started by nbs2005, Dec 2, 2019.

  1. nbs2005

    nbs2005 Gold Member

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2018
    Location:
    Dundas, Ontario
    I'm starting to notice a slight amount of tingling in my pinky, mostly on my fretting hand. Dr Google suggests this is fairly common in guitar players; particularly if they start to up the volume of playing they are doing. I've been going a bit crazy lately and adding a lot of bends and bends against fretted notes with my pinky. It also doesn't help that I spend a lot of time on the computer for work.

    I've been trying to ease up a bit, make sure I'm fully warmed up, and have limited the bending and fretting that I do with my pinky. I've also been taking more rest days. A trip to the Doctor is also being scheduled.

    What are folks here doing that have had to deal with this?

    Thanks,

    Jeff
     
  2. jimsz

    jimsz

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2009
    Location:
    Surrey, BC
    I forced myself to become ambidextrous.
     
  3. Guitar101

    Guitar101 Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2011
    Location:
    Gores Landing, Ontario
  4. blueshores_guy

    blueshores_guy Gold Member

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2007
    Location:
    Grand Bend, Ontario
    I've suffered from severe stiffness in my left pinky (fretting hand) for a number of years, to the point that certain chords are too painful to play.
    Since this is age-related, I've been searching for a way to turn back time and become more youthful.
    No luck yet.

    However, switching to a 24.5" scale guitar has made a huge difference. It's much, much easier for me to play than my others, which are a mix of 24 3/4", 25", and 25 1/2".
     
  5. keto

    keto Gold Member

    Joined:
    May 23, 2006
    Location:
    Edmonton
    My fretting hand is very temp sensitive. If I come in or start cold and really dig in, my fingers start to go numb from the big joint out to the tips.

    Washing hands in HOT water before I start helps some, sora pre-warmup warmup.

    This is probably more arthritis related than carpal, might be worth a try. Once I'm fully warmed up, I don't have the issue.
     
  6. greco

    greco Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2007
    Location:
    Kitchener, Ontario
    Very wise. You need to undergo the appropriate clinical investigations, receive a diagnostic formulation and then develop a plan of treatment.
     
  7. knight_yyz

    knight_yyz Gold Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2015
    Location:
    Hamilton, Ontario
    Rigid night splints while you sleep
     
  8. Wardo

    Wardo

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2010
    Location:
    South Ontario
    When I got my D18 in 2012 the neck profile was different than I'm used to and I developed a cyst on my left wrist in about 6 months; it got to be about the size of .22 pellet. It didn't hurt but it didn't go away for years. I'd read that these were called bible cysts because the old time cure was to clock it good one with a bible and that would break up the cyst. Not having a bible I hit it a few times with The Rules of Civil Procedure which is a large heavy book something like a bible. After about the third application of The Rules it became evident that I was on a pyrrhic course as the cure for the cyst was likely to break my wrist.

    I few years later I got an HD28V which has a different neck profile than the D18 and the cyst went away once I started playing that guitar a lot; no reduction in playing time just a different guitar.

    So, can you change something in how you play or maybe start using another guitar part time which is what worked for me; I didn't at the time expect anything to change because of the new guitar but I did notice right away that the neck on the 28V was less strain on my left hand and eventually the cyst went away.
     
    Dorian2, keto and greco like this.
  9. nbs2005

    nbs2005 Gold Member

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2018
    Location:
    Dundas, Ontario
    @Wardo

    That is a really interesting post. Thinking back (now that you mention it) I noticed this when I started playing my CV Tele more than my Strat. The CV has a C neck, medium chunky I would guess. The Strat has a V neck, but it's overall thicker. I have another Tele now with a chunky neck as well; have only that for a week or so (yes, I owe a NGD thread). Possibly another piece of the puzzle?

    Still taking it easy and getting checked out, but I know the neck profile of the guitar I've been playing the most recently is different from what I was doing before noticing the trouble.

    Thanks
     
    greco likes this.
  10. greco

    greco Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2007
    Location:
    Kitchener, Ontario
    You might not have developed the ideal/proper technique.
     
    Wardo likes this.
  11. Wardo

    Wardo

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2010
    Location:
    South Ontario
    I dunno, I'm pretty good at smashing stuff ... lol
     
    greco likes this.
  12. Distortion

    Distortion

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2015
    Location:
    Hamilton
    I have been having trouble with my thumb where it joins the hand on my picking hand when holding the pick and playing. 22 year old MX injury coming back to bite me. It was fun at the time though.
     

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