About the Blog

Some people create to enjoy the finished product. I get my greatest satisfaction from the process of creating. This blog is my attempt to share that process with others.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Dr. StrangeGlove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Arthritis Cream

Firstly, I love wordplays and clever alterations of phrases or titles (in case the title of this blog didn't already tell you that). Secondly, (in case you've never seen the movie) the title of this particular post is a play on Dr. Strangelove: or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb, a comedy directed by Stanley Kubrick. Thirdly, I've self-diagnosed myself (aided by the hypochondriac's paradise, WebMD) with carpal tunnel syndrome. Fourthly and finally, yes - I KNOW I should be asleep right now.

As per WebMD's instructions, I've been
wearing a wrist brace to take pressure off of the evil "median nerve" that's causing my right hand so much pain. I wear it at night and sometimes even wear it during the day. (Why not? It helps.)

The most aesthetically pleasing, well-fitting, and comfortable wrist brace I've found is the Wellgate for Women "Women's Slimfit Wrist Support."

But it's not just the wrist that bothers me. All of my crafty projects take a toll on my fingers, elbows and arm muscles as well. Overexertion. To combat these aches and pains, I've experimented with several topical pain relief creams. My two favorites are:
  • Tiger Balm Sports Rub (for heavy-duty pain relief): I've used this cream to soothe sore muscles and achy joints since my days as a lacrosse player in high school. It's the only thing that relieves the pain in my bum left knee, and I put it on my wrists and hands before bed when I've been knitting or stitching all day. It has a combination of both camphor and menthol, so it's too fragrant for use in public (unless you want to smell like an arthritic with a head cold). However, I've found that the combination of Tiger Balm, a wrist brace, and NSAID pain relievers works well over the long term.
  • Aspercreme (for daytime use): not as effective over the long-term as Tiger Balm, but provides great short-term pain relief with no funny smell (!!). The smell is almost nonexistent, and I can put this on my hands while knitting without worrying that my project will smell like it (and use it during the day without getting funny looks from people).

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