View Full Version : RSI sufferer - Advice wanted


Prince3d
06 June 2009, 06:57 PM
Hi,

I've been suffering with Wrist RSI for a 3 years now. I didnt take much notice of it in the beginning. I guess it was my own fault. I used to sit on PC for 16 hour plus 3D modelling with a crap chair and a high desk. I started getting pains in my wrist and gotton worse from then on.

3 years on i bought a new chair, wrist support, new mouse - Vertical mouse 3 ( which has helped a little).. but I feel I gone past the point of no return and now im getting tingling pins and needles across my forearm to elbowHTTP://rsi.websitehosting-services.co.uk/forum/images/emoticons/frown.gif

this is really worrying me now as I have a year left to go at Universty and I need to use the mouse for my 3D work, I'm scared I may have to drop everything and change careers completly.

Any 3D artist RSI/carpel tunnel sufferer out there?? any advice you can give me

SheepFactory
06 June 2009, 06:59 PM
Switch to wacom and do not ever touch a mouse again. It worked for me.

Also start swimming.

Prince3d
06 June 2009, 07:04 PM
I found wacom too hard to use in Maya, slowed me right down. maybe I didnt give it enough time.

BigPixolin
06 June 2009, 07:09 PM
Exercise... Nothing will help more.
I would give more practice with the wacom in all programs also.

Boone
06 June 2009, 07:10 PM
My mouse is now gone and I am restricting myself to my trusty Bamboo. Never going back.

Also, why do you say its gone beyond the point of no return? Have you sought the opinion of your Doctor? If not - do so immediately.

SheepFactory
06 June 2009, 07:16 PM
I found wacom too hard to use in Maya, slowed me right down. maybe I didnt give it enough time.

I use wacom for everything and it is much faster than the mouse once you get used to it. It shouldnt take longer than a week.

I tried using a mouse the other day and it felt so clunky after getting used to the precision of the pen.

Not like you have a choice. You either get used to it or your wrist gets worse. The vertical mouse stuff doesnt really work (I tried that too) since you are still clicking all over the place. Wacom cuts down on the clicks considerably.

Prince3d
06 June 2009, 07:18 PM
Exercise... Nothing will help more.
I would give more practice with the wacom in all programs also.

What exercises is good for wrist RSI??

Paul McLaughlin
06 June 2009, 07:20 PM
Deadlifts.


Be careful.

XminusOne
06 June 2009, 07:20 PM
Haven't touched a mouse in years. Highly recommended you get comfy with a wacom.

mturner
06 June 2009, 07:25 PM
I had similar problems and made the move to a tablet a while ago. When you are used to working well with a mouse, shifting to another input device will definitely feel clunky, but you should force yourself to get used to it. I use Maya at work daily and I wouldn't go back to a mouse unless my tablet broke - and then probably just to get to amazon.com to order a new one.
If you need the motivation, just remember how it feels when it really hurts or you wake up in the morning with your arm on fire. To feel comfortable with it, it took me maybe a couple of weeks while tweaking the wacom driver options as I went. For a while, try to ignore the mouse completely - just navigating your pc or browsing with the tablet - middle click scrolling is good for browsing. I use the lower button for right-click and the upper button for middle-click. Makes working with maya pretty easy

Apart from that, try stopping very once in a while and shaking/stretching your arm. Get away from the desk even if its only for a few minutes. You could rearrange your keyboard shortcuts to alter the share of the work each of your hands do while working.
Look into getting a Felxtend glove.

MJV
06 June 2009, 07:27 PM
RSI can usually be attributed to using the wrong size mouse for your hand, especially one that is too small. If a bigger mouse isn't enough, then try switching back and forth between two different mouses.

ZCtrl
06 June 2009, 07:47 PM
I've never had a problem until recently after working a lot of crunch time. But it's my clicking finger that hurts, not my wrist. I know what you mean, it is scary to think that this threatens your career. For me just becoming aware of the pain has helped me put my hand in a more relaxed position, but there is still pain so eventually i'm gonna have to do something about it, but i'm not sure what. Modelling using a wacom just doesn't work for me, however using microsofts new Natal technology for modelling would be a perfect solution...someone needs to make that happen.

tdHendrix
06 June 2009, 07:50 PM
I agree with everyone else about using a wacom tablet instead. I was starting to have troubles with my wrist until I recently switched to using a tablet only. It does take some getting used to though. At first I was slowed down in Maya cause I wasn't used to using a tablet, but you get used to it pretty fast and your wrist will feel better. Taking a 3-5 minute break every 30-40 minutes has helped out my wrist too.

MJV
06 June 2009, 08:02 PM
If all else fails I would suggest a Kensington Expert Mouse.

Regarding the Vertical Mouse 3, just looking at that thing makes my hand hurt.

Gentle Fury
06 June 2009, 08:44 PM
What exercises is good for wrist RSI??

Guitar Hero

mike33
06 June 2009, 09:15 PM
Hi,

...

Any 3D artist RSI/carpel tunnel sufferer out there?? any advice you can give me

I started getting carpal tunnel in 1993, started in my right hand, so I switched to my left hand and quickly got carpal tunnel there to. I had surgery in September '93 on my right hand. For the most part I lost 50-60% of my productivity and I had constant sensation from my fingers to my elbows.

It took about 10 years for most symptons to go away.

Number one: see your Doctor for medical advise.... find a legit web site that talks about ergonomics so you can learn more about it.

Number two: see what the University can do to help you.

Otherwise the way you work on a computer, how you sit, how long you work for, how you sit at home, what you do at home, everything in regards to your body and how you use it will affect what happens from here on out.

Until you are actually having issues, it's difficult for others to understand what you are going through. It can be a chronic, constant issue for a long time. The key is to try and manage
how you use your body to work towards healing the injury physically and to not loose hope mentally.

It doesn't mean you need to stop working towards your career, it just means you may need to take some time to let your body heal and rest. These issues will not go away quickly so be patient and learn to know your limits.

It's also important to know that one day in a bad ergonomic setting can set you back weeks... so if a workstation/laptop, etc is set up wrong, change it ASAP.

Carpal Tunnel was a big set back for me in the 90's it made me stop doing a lot of computer work and art... even though I'm not very prolific it didn't stop me from trying to continue improving my art skills. So don't give up hope.

Sorry if I'm vague or just talking in general terms here, you really need to talk with a doctor or medical people at the University as a first step.

I hope I helped in some way.

Mike

BigPixolin
06 June 2009, 10:17 PM
What exercises is good for wrist RSI??

I can only say I do a lot of stretching, free weights, jogging, and p90x.
I may sound like a infomercial this is not spam. Some co-workers and I got into this, you can't go wrong with it as long as your dedicated:
http://www.beachbody.com/product/fitness_programs/p90x.do

Paul McLaughlin
06 June 2009, 11:20 PM
Sounds a lot like crossfit

Prince3d
06 June 2009, 11:41 AM
Sorry if I'm vague or just talking in general terms here, you really need to talk with a doctor or medical people at the University as a first step.



Thanks for the reply, yes you are right. best to get diagnosed first..I actually went to see my doctor today, he booked me in for a blood test first and take it from there.

Thanks for the reply, its nice to see you and others made it through and learned to cope with it and not give up.

Prince3d
06 June 2009, 11:44 AM
I had similar problems and made the move to a tablet a while ago. When you are used to working well with a mouse, shifting to another input device will definitely feel clunky, but you should force yourself to get used to it. I use Maya at work daily and I wouldn't go back to a mouse unless my tablet broke - and then probably just to get to amazon.com to order a new one.
If you need the motivation, just remember how it feels when it really hurts or you wake up in the morning with your arm on fire. To feel comfortable with it, it took me maybe a couple of weeks while tweaking the wacom driver options as I went. For a while, try to ignore the mouse completely - just navigating your pc or browsing with the tablet - middle click scrolling is good for browsing. I use the lower button for right-click and the upper button for middle-click. Makes working with maya pretty easy

Apart from that, try stopping very once in a while and shaking/stretching your arm. Get away from the desk even if its only for a few minutes. You could rearrange your keyboard shortcuts to alter the share of the work each of your hands do while working.
Look into getting a Felxtend glove.

Thanks for the tip, I've just started using the pen again with the settings you've recommended. I may also get a cheap 3D connection spaceNavigator to use with the wacom and see how it goes.

ommait
06 June 2009, 09:23 PM
Hey,

I have some issues with my wrists as well, its very sad, because a lot of artists will deny the problem until they themselves suffer, I know I did. I figured I would be in my 40s before any problems started. I think it's irresponsible for schools to skip teaching students ergonomics. Whenever I hire someone, I always go through this stuff with them.

make sure you see your doc to make sure you dont have something else like r arthritis or another joint dissease, even food allergies can cause joint pain.

The wacom tablet driver can be set up to function in mouse mode, or in tablet mode (default). Set it to mouse mode, and the pen behaves like a mouse, so its very easy to change from a mouse to a pen. You may need to tweak your acceleration and speed properties.

Get a little 3d mouse, they're a great investment. You dont have to constantly contort your hand so much to rotate the view. Just make sure you crank the sensitivity up, so it does not require so much force to move around.

Hand and arm rests make things comfortable, just make sure they're fitted for you, so you don't have your shoulder up by your ear.

Someone on here suggested meditation to me.

Make sure you keep your wrists in neutral, or use light wrist guards to promote this.

A good workout routine like swimming will help move blood around your body better.

The fact that you're working a ton of hours is not healthy. Our bodies were not designed to stay still for so long. Take breaks every half an hour and lightly stretch your tendons, after you feel a bit better, you can break every hour instead. Make sure to get up out of your chair though.

Think about how long you're at the pc, 10 hours at work, 2 hours for videogames, 2 hours browsing the internet? You have to limit yourself to only using the computer so much. Don't stop all together though, as this may weaken your muscles depending on the type of injury. In general I've been advised to always modify the workspace and limit the time spent doing, but never eliminate the activity all together.

If the doc suggests surgery, make sure to get a second or third opinion, as there really has not been enough research into the rsi injuries, and some docs may have more info than others.

I hope in the near future, "crunching" and these insane hours we put in disappear forever. We need to really understand that a healthy and well balanced artist is more productive in the long run. The green movement's goal is to protect our resources and environment, we need an understanding that we are part of this environment, and thus need to be protected as well. Just because we love our jobs, does not justify the abuse we're sometimes expected to endure.

I hope this helps, don't give up, and always take care of your body first.

cyartist
06 June 2009, 06:25 AM
Getting a wacom is not going to solve your problem only delay it for a while.

What you need is Wrist Releve. I had serious wrist problems and I have always
had a wacom. Someone recommended Wrist releve and now everything is fine.
I still work 12 hour days at times with no problems. see link below contact the
company mention in information and they will ship them to you.

http://www.barryrudolph.com/newtoys/toys/wristreleve.html

Prince3d
06 June 2009, 10:47 PM
Thanks to everyone who recommened I use the Wacom which I have been doing for few days, but now the pain is back and has moved from my wrist to forearm using the wacom :(

Boone
06 June 2009, 10:51 PM
Thanks to everyone who recommened I use the Wacom which I have been doing for few days, but now the pain is back and has moved from my wrist to forearm using the wacom :(

Hmmm...I would definitely go see the Quack about this one.

Prince3d
06 June 2009, 10:58 PM
I went to see the doctor and he booked me in for a blood test first thing and take it from there.



http://www.barryrudolph.com/newtoys/toys/wristreleve.html

Cheers I'll look into it.

MJV
06 June 2009, 11:04 PM
Again, as I said before, if all else fails, use a Kensington Expert Mouse. It simply isn't possible to suffer from RSI using this.

Prince3d
06 June 2009, 11:13 PM
This one? http://www.amazon.co.uk/Kensington-Expert-Mouse-Trackball-compatible/dp/B00009KH63

geothefaust
06 June 2009, 11:18 PM
Thanks to everyone who recommened I use the Wacom which I have been doing for few days, but now the pain is back and has moved from my wrist to forearm using the wacom :(


That's unfortunate to hear. I too, suffer from RSI, I switched to a Wacom and wear nice wool fingerless gloves. It seems to help.


But, I also did 6 months of physical therapy, and continue to do exercises today. I think a key point to make is that, this isn't going to go away quickly. It's a long term issue that will take you a long time to resolve. It's been about 5 years since my injury, and even though I do exercises regularly, use a wacom, wear wrist guard (gloves in this case), I sometimes still have a bit of pain. Best thing to do, is walk away and give yourself a break, and do some exercises to get that blood flowing again.


Long term... Do exercises. I'm sure your doctor will prescribe a physical therapist, it's the best route you could go for this type of issue, IMHO.


Goodluck!

MJV
06 June 2009, 11:28 PM
This one? http://www.amazon.co.uk/Kensington-Expert-Mouse-Trackball-compatible/dp/B00009KH63

This one (http://us.kensington.com/html/2200.html) is maybe the same but it says Vista compatible.

FabioMSilva
06 June 2009, 12:16 AM
I use wacom for everything and it is much faster than the mouse once you get used to it. It shouldnt take longer than a week.

I tried using a mouse the other day and it felt so clunky after getting used to the precision of the pen.

y.

for gaming too?

actually, i just ordered an intuos4, but i do not see me modeling or animating using the pen. i tried doing it with my older tablet(volito2) but i couldnt get the hang of it. i cant even draw well with it and i can do so with a pencil&paper...and mouse

maybe its volito fault tho

and btw, whats the correct position for us to have our wrists in the table? my chair has a long armrest, and i rest the elbow there pointing upwards (until the hand meets the mouse)..so the wrist area is kinda in mid air...tho i think i could rest in the table tho

gaganjain
06 June 2009, 01:38 AM
This might help
Home Remedies for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (http://knol.google.com/k/reza-nikpayam/home-remedies-for-carpal-tunnel-syndrome/7xrtku18vmr8/24)

Couture
06 June 2009, 03:41 AM
I can only say I do a lot of stretching, free weights, jogging, and p90x.
I may sound like a infomercial this is not spam. Some co-workers and I got into this, you can't go wrong with it as long as your dedicated:
http://www.beachbody.com/product/fitness_programs/p90x.do

I know a guy who did this, and went from completely overweight to RIPPED.

LOTK
06 June 2009, 08:21 AM
I only had a small period of wrist disturbance during intence modeling work when using a crappy mouse (they couldn't bother to buy quality equipment at that office). But it was good enough to show me what could happen to my wrist in the future.

About tablets, basically I am left handed but for some reason I developed into using a mouse with the right hand. If I switched to a wacom or any tablet I will need to use it with my left hand. That is double confusing for me because my left hand is now used to press shortcuts for the past 10 years!

Any advice from similar situations?

Fahrija
06 June 2009, 10:36 AM
Welcome on board. I would recommend two books wich give a great bunch information because it is not only your wrist which causes the problem. it goes from the arm to the shoulder and affects mostly the whole upper body because of long time pc work (at least 5-8 years). I strongly agree to what people say here - you have to do exercises and need motion! if you just count some hours motion per week itīs totaly insufficient especially when you count more than 10 hours sitting (per diem) on the other hand. You donīt like to hear it but you have to change your habits completly. the days working 8 hours (or more) nonstop without standing up and doing nothing else than sitting in front of a monitor are over. One time you have RSI and still stick with the same job you donīt get rid of it - you just can change your habits that you no longer accumulate damage more quickly than you dissipate its effects. here are the links to the books wich gave me personaly a lot of hints and information:

1. Itīs not carpal tunnel syndrome
http://www.amazon.com/Carpal-Syndrome-Therapy-Computer-Professionals/dp/0965510999/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1245232801&sr=8-1

2. the trigger point therapy workbook
http://www.amazon.com/Trigger-Point-Therapy-Workbook-Self-Treatment/dp/1572243759/ref=pd_sim_b_7

3. In case you are someone who forgets the clock when sitting in front of the computer you definetly need a reminder to stand up from time to time. therefore I suggest this software (freeware): http://www.workrave.org/


best wishes
fahrija

paintbox
06 June 2009, 02:30 PM
Welcome on board. I would recommend two books wich give a great bunch information because it is not only your wrist which causes the problem. it goes from the arm to the shoulder and affects mostly the whole upper body because of long time pc work (at least 5-8 years). I strongly agree to what people say here - you have to do exercises and need motion! if you just count some hours motion per week itīs totaly insufficient especially when you count more than 10 hours sitting (per diem) on the other hand. You donīt like to hear it but you have to change your habits completly. the days working 8 hours (or more) nonstop without standing up and doing nothing else than sitting in front of a monitor are over. One time you have RSI and still stick with the same job you donīt get rid of it - you just can change your habits that you no longer accumulate damage more quickly than you dissipate its effects. here are the links to the books wich gave me personaly a lot of hints and information:

1. Itīs not carpal tunnel syndrome
http://www.amazon.com/Carpal-Syndrome-Therapy-Computer-Professionals/dp/0965510999/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1245232801&sr=8-1

2. the trigger point therapy workbook
http://www.amazon.com/Trigger-Point-Therapy-Workbook-Self-Treatment/dp/1572243759/ref=pd_sim_b_7

3. In case you are someone who forgets the clock when sitting in front of the computer you definetly need a reminder to stand up from time to time. therefore I suggest this software (freeware): http://www.workrave.org/


best wishes
fahrija

QFA.

I personally do yoga and it I know for sure it helped me prevent any RSI. Muscles can really tighten doing the same thing over and over. Make sure with whatever exercise you are going to do to get a good warm-up and cool-down (with stretches) --What I am saying getting ripped shouldn't be your first priority (maybe your second ;) )

But most of all, and what has been said, listen to your body.

gent_k
06 June 2009, 04:19 PM
Someone here mentioned mouse sensitivity, and I think that gets overlooked.

A few years ago when I participated in LAN parties quite frequently, I noticed that just about everyone that used very low sensitivity (more accurate aim at long distance on FPSs) suffered from wrist problems.

I've always used quite high mouse sensitivity and also disable "enhance pointer precision" (to the point where most other people can't use my PC), which means my wrist is firm on the table and there is very little overall movement. It's rare that I ever get tired wrists, definitely not from using the mouse, and I think in my case low overall hand movement due to being used to high mouse sensitivity was key.

nemotoad
06 June 2009, 06:00 PM
U might want to be careful with high mouse sensitivity. It's what caused me a lot of problems, because my problems are finger and tendon related. So when the mouse sensitivity is high, I tended to use my fingers instead of my arm to manipulate the cursor. I use a little egg timer to remind me to get up and move. Annoys the hell out of everyone :D

ElevenMG
06 June 2009, 06:38 PM
about 8 years ago I had such debilitating RSI that I changed careers and just have recently gotten back into animation as a hobby.

My hand turned in to basically a claw. I had intense pain just turning a door knob. I couldn't control my fingers very well. It was very scary and very very painful.

First off SEE A DOCTOR WHO SPECIALIZES IN RSI!

A lot of doctors are completely unaware of how to treat RSI and how to help people with RSI. If your doctor wants to put you under the knife I would recommend getting a second opinion.

Your first or second visit your doctor should have you siting at a desk working on a computer for observation.

Then your Dr. will explain what you are doing poorly and how to improve your posture and working habits.

Physical therapy will be part of the process as well along with 2-3 arm messages a week.

Acupuncture I had very good results with.

Breaks are very important too. There are no hard or fast rules for how long or often you need breaks. When I started my road to recovery I worked for 10min and then took a break for 10 minutes! 30mins then a 5min break is normal for me now.

Proper workstation ergonomics are also very important. most desks are not setup very well for ergonomics. I'm 6'2" so I have my desk jacked up a few extra inches with books. If your desk is too low you get forced into poor posture. opposite is true too too high can cause problems.

Find a RSI specific forum that you can join.

Every RSI situation is unique. invest the time to educate yourself. More and more jobs are requiring long times at the computer so its not the CG jobs with these issues.

Wacom tablets are not necessarily the answer many people including my self tend to hold pencils very tightly. You also can have the bad habit of using small wrist movements with tablets. I occasionally use a tablet more for PS work.

Some one mentioned doing dead lifts as a good exercise for RSI I hope that was a joke. Dead lifts put an incredible amount of strain on your muscles that are already injured. DO NOT DO DEAD LIFTS UNTIL YOU DISCUSS WITH A DOCTOR! That being said I think dead lifts are great exercise if done properly I work them into my regular work out routine.

I'm not a doctor or expert I'm just someone how has had their life impacted by an RSI injury. If you don't currently suffer from RSI I would still do some research about proper workstation habits. It takes weeks, months and years to develop RSI but once you have it, it can flair up very quickly.

There is hope many people with proper guidance and re-training have gotten back into the work force and had productive careers.

Bucket
06 June 2009, 08:03 AM
You could try a powerball. It works for me. It's just a gyroscope that you spin up and get exercise. It's kinda fun also..

Just keep in mind how often you have your elbows bent at right angles or further.

http://www.amazon.com/Dynaflex-Power-Ball-Gyro-Amber/dp/B000KBIK5Q/ref=sr_1_12?ie=UTF8&s=sporting-goods&qid=1245311887&sr=8-12

Go see a doctor...

claybub
06 June 2009, 10:08 AM
in addition to what has been said about getting a wacom tablet, make sure that you get a medium sized or large one. the small ones are kinda hard on your wrist as you tense up trying to get the detail you need. the larger ones make you use your whole arm and are far more comfortable for your wrist. it takes some getting used to, but once you're comfortable using a tablet you'll never go back.

Prince3d
06 June 2009, 11:03 AM
I'm actually using an A5 sized tablet - Grapphire 4 :)
Would moving over to the Intuos be any better?


I tried some chinese tiger balm out yesterday and massaged it onto my wrist and forearm and wow made a huge improvement giving me temp relief for couple hours or so. have any of you guys tried this??

Even though its painful using either mouse or pen.. I'm finding the pen sort off bearable atleast for now.

And Thanks for the replies everyone all points have been taken aboard. i'm just waiting to see what the doctor says and hopes he refers me to a Physio.

Prince3d
06 June 2009, 11:22 AM
@geothefast: What does the physical therapy involve?

@gaganjain: Thanks for the link:)

@Fahrija: Just what I've been looking for , and its free:) ..I used to use the RSI warrior the trial version..

@paintbox: I wish I could do yoga, theres no yoga classes near me:( . is it possible to learn yoga from a book or videos?

@elevenMG: Thank you for sharing you experiences, this what really scares me, having to change careers:( ..I'm glad you're doing ok now. how does it feel now after 8 years? are the symptoms still there?? I did actually take a year off from computing thinking I just needed a break at first. Do you know of any good RSI forum? I found one forum but it was near empty now.

@Bucket: I was thinking of getting one of these, you say its helped you with your wrist?

ElevenMG
06 June 2009, 04:07 PM
@geothefast: What does the physical therapy involve?

@gaganjain: Thanks for the link:)

@Fahrija: Just what I've been looking for , and its free:) ..I used to use the RSI warrior the trial version..

@paintbox: I wish I could do yoga, theres no yoga classes near me:( . is it possible to learn yoga from a book or videos?

@elevenMG: Thank you for sharing you experiences, this what really scares me, having to change careers:( ..I'm glad you're doing ok now. how does it feel now after 8 years? are the symptoms still there?? I did actually take a year off from computing thinking I just needed a break at first. Do you know of any good RSI forum? I found one forum but it was near empty now.

@Bucket: I was thinking of getting one of these, you say its helped you with your wrist?


If you take care of yourself I think you will be able to recover and stay in your chosen career.

I actually tried to find the forum I went to in the past and can't seem to find it.

Things like tiger balm and icy hot are good for temporary relief but don't use them so you can continue to work when you feel pain its your body telling you something it wrong.

One thing that I did is after I learned proper form / re-trained my working habits and got a timer so I could take frequent breaks I started to use the mouse with my left hand. It took me awhile to get used to it but it gave my right side a break. This way you can speed up your recovery.

I can't stress the importance of breaks enough. When you timer goes off Save and STOP walk away don't finish the step you are working on it could be another 5-10 minutes easy.

After all this time If I fall back into bad habits it will flair up. If I forget to take breaks regularly it will fair up.

one thing that I do is have a sleeve of a sweat shirt that I use as an arm warmer. This helps my arm stay nice and loose.

I recommend two books. I think one was mentioned before.

Repetitive Strain Injury: A Computer User's Guide by DEBORAH QUILTER

Deborah also has a book that I actually just ordered called

The Repetitive Strain Injury Recovery Book by deborah quilter.

Here are some articles on her website to help you get started.

http://www.rsihelp.com/article.shtml

It's Not Carpal Tunnel Syndrome! RSI Theory & Therapy for Computer Professionals by Jack Bellis and Suparna Damany

Please goto a doctor. If I knew what I know now I would treat this as seriously as a broken leg, don't keep trying to walk when the bone is snapped.

Bucket
06 June 2009, 04:45 PM
@geothefast:

@Bucket: I was thinking of getting one of these, you say its helped you with your wrist?

Yep it helped. I used to do caricatures at theme parks and I'm left handed and I would have to draw at a very awkward angle. Made my hand cramped and overtime tingly and numb. It helped with that. And when I was in school doing 3d stuff for many hours a day, I use my right hand because that's the way I learned to use a mouse... But after many hours of doing 3d stuff my right hand. Cramps and tingly and parts of my fingers were going numb. So I used a powerball a few minutes a day and my hand got stronger and the tingly numbness went away.

But yeah.. probably should see a doctor if this a serious problem. Problem is, like many have already said. Some doctors have no idea how to treat the problem and some are in disagreement as to the cause. It might vary on a case to case basis. So our suggestions may not be helpful at all.

I had a friend in college who had a tingly and numbness in his arms it turned out he had a birth defect in the alignment with the nerves in his arms and the motion in his elbows was pinching the nerves. He ignored the problem and it got worse, eventually he lost a lot of motion with his hand and went into a claw a shape. The pain also progressively got worse overtime and was eventually constant. In fact he said he was in so much pain that the pain relieving chemicals his body was releasing was so great that he was getting high from it. That's when decided it was a problem. He had a surgical procedure done on his right hand. Even though months have past he still has limited motion with his right hand and he wears a sock on it to keep it warm cause the minor temperature changes cause him pain. He's going to need surgery on his other arm for the same problem.

DangerousCliff
06 June 2009, 05:30 PM
Switch to wacom and do not ever touch a mouse again. It worked for me.

Also start swimming.

Quoted for agreement, save that I fence instead of swim.

Honestly, it takes about a week to adjust and get up to speed using a Wacom (or other tablet) but after that, I'm faster and feel more in control with a Wacom now than ever was with a mouse.

BigPixolin
06 June 2009, 05:41 PM
I know a guy who did this, and went from completely overweight to RIPPED.

Yes sir, it is the real deal.
If your not overweight and you do it, you get ripped big time.

Slux
06 June 2009, 05:28 PM
2. the trigger point therapy workbook
http://www.amazon.com/Trigger-Point-Therapy-Workbook-Self-Treatment/dp/1572243759/ref=pd_sim_b_7

Nice to see it beeing mention here because this book has solved all my RSI problems. I have read quite a few articles and discussions about RSI and I have been always suprised, that hardly anybody has mention Trigger point therapy. Without this I would be lost. Any career in 3D would be pretty much impossible for me.

I have been having problems with RSI for couple of years. Sometimes it was so bad, I couldn't use mouse for more than 10 minutes.
I have tried to use my Wacom Intuos 3 A4 tablet as a mouse replacement and that have sort of worked. I am left handed but use my right hand to operate mouse, so using tablet with left hand was fine but using keyboard with right hand was sort of odd. I wasn't used to press keyboard short cuts with my right hand.

I have looked for ways how to solve it. I have tried some wrist and forearm exercises. As a result, my forearm muscles were stronger, then ever before but it had hardly any effect on my wrist pain.

Then I have find the Trigger point therapy workbook. I was pretty sceptical about it at first. I was thinking that it is probably some esoterical stuff involving redirecting your chi energy or something. I have found out, it has nothing to do with acupressure points, chi, meridians or chakras. Its very physiological. When you do theese "massages" you can physically feel those hard points in your muscles and sometimes when you press them, it shoots the pain though your whole arm.

Because I still use computer quite a lot, the pain is coming back from time to time. But its not a problem anymore. For example I am modeling something and i notice that the pain is back and its slooowly increasing. No problem. I just stop and do my massage for about 3-5 minutes and thats usually enough to reduce it to maybe 20% and I can continue to work without any problems. Its usually never completely gone because I am too lazy. If I would do these massages regularly, like at least couple times a week, I am pretty sure the pain would go away completely. But I usually stop as soon as the pain is not very noticable.

I like to use blunt end of a pencil to do this massage. That works quite well. If you have RSI problems, I would recomend you, to try it. Its free and it doesn't take much time, so you have noting to lose. If you do it right, the results should be almost immediate. The pain won't be gone completely but you should feel noticable improvement.

BTW you don't need that book (even though it may be handy). Just google Trigger points. There is plenty info online. If you have any questions about it, feel free to ask me.

geezlouize
06 June 2009, 06:33 PM
i dont know if anyone mentioned it. but i got a wrist brace. it keeps your wrist from moving. it's a little weird at first...but definitely helped.

Aluuk
06 June 2009, 08:43 PM
What has helped me over the years has been regular massage, and chiropractic. For me I found that when my wrist/arm began to hurt it was usually caused by one of two things...extremely tense trapezius (http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.rci.rutgers.edu/%7Euzwiak/AnatPhys/APFallLect15_files/image009.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.rci.rutgers.edu/%7Euzwiak/AnatPhys/APFallLect15.html&h=480&w=640&sz=32&tbnid=kadVGVg9Z0b6xM:&tbnh=103&tbnw=137&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dtrapezius&usg=__yabij_oQSGojufHldpcAmlCNx6A=&ei=i_Y7SrXkJonWsQOV34X4Cg&sa=X&oi=image_result&resnum=7&ct=image) muscle, or my neck, usually around C7 (http://www.szote.u-szeged.hu/Radiology/Anatomy/skeleton/neck1.htm), being out of alignment. (C7 is where a lot of the nerves for the arm leave the spine.)

It may sound simple, or silly, but it really helped. I haven't had any pain in about 4 years, and I've clocked A LOT of hours in front of the computer.

Hope it helps!

hoskins78
06 June 2009, 03:34 PM
I had terrible trouble with my mouse hand when I worked for an office that gave us the cheapest mice imaginable to use. I had had some shoulder pains before, but these big clunky mice - especially with those mid finger scroll wheels on top - just finished me off. I went to start work one day and my clicking finger just wouldn't move.
It just got worse from there - my hand would claw up and it felt as if the tendons were going to rip right out of my arm some days. I had to switch from right to left handed use just so I could keep working which made things difficult, but not as hard as I had thought by switching to a Logitech Marble Mouse (which I had to supply myself).
Instead of clicking all the time you just slap those buttons with any finger or thumb you have handy and the rotation of your hand goes back through your forearm rather than being all in the wrist or fingers. If you draw with your mouse then I find it's not so good for that (I have a Wacom) but for general mouse stuff it's wonderful.
Just to emphasise what a problem it can become, it's now 8 years since my problems and my right hand is still not 100% reliable, but is continuing to get better.
Oddly I've stuck to left hand mouse use now too - allows me to type and mouse at the same time :)

leeshie
06 June 2009, 09:05 PM
A few years back I was having numbness and tingling in my hand/arm. I was spending 8 hours a day on the pc doing animation and my specialist diagnosed me with Carpal Tunnel Syndrone and put me on the waiting list for surgery.

I became suspicious that it wasnt carpal tunnel when I realised that I, as a dead keen new golfer, had been holding my grip wrong and wondered whether this would cause issues. The specialist got very angry with me for doubting her diagnosis and told me I was being ridiculous. So I sought a second opinion.

The 2nd specialist, also a keen golfer, did scans and noted that there was significant swelling around the tiny bones in my hand that could have been caused by an incorrect golf grip. I had a cortisone injection directly into that tiny, inflammed bone, and sure enough, the numbness, tingling and pain that had been plaguing me for months, went away.

That scare really made me appreciate how important looking after your body really is, and have made changes to minimise the risk of injury when spending time at the pc - and of course, I fixed my golf grip!

paintbox
06 June 2009, 10:01 PM
@paintbox: I wish I could do yoga, theres no yoga classes near me:( . is it possible to learn yoga from a book or videos?


Possible, yes. Preferable, no.

I say this because a good (hatha/ashtanga-yoga) teacher will be able to guide you better for your specific problem. So before you get a book/video, try to see if you could make at least one appointment, even if it means traveling for a bit. Its easy to do a posture (asana) wrong just by reading a book. Watching a video is a bit better , but no replacement for a teacher...

EnergyMachine
06 June 2009, 06:31 AM
I wish I could do yoga, theres no yoga classes near me:( . is it possible to learn yoga from a book or videos?



Search for Yoga Guru Ramdev on youtube etc. He is a very poplular figure here particularly for yoga. But the videos would be in hindi and also not sure if you can get a video directly related to your problem. So ,as paintbox mentioned, you can try to get access to some authentic yoga teacher. If that not a feasible right now then try to figure out just the names of asanas related to your problem and then search videos based on the names.

http://www.youtube.com/results?search_type=&search_query=yoga+guru+ramdev&aq=f

spiderspy
06 June 2009, 09:48 AM
Now I might not be an expert as everyone else here but I think the way you sit have lots of effects...

Me for example have never had any trouble at all since I started using my couch, its really relaxing and comfortable, I almost lay down on it with just my neck and a bit of my back up on it and the arm is completly rested, as it only have to lay against the couch all the time and only small moves and such^^. Works great for me at least never had any problem since then.

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