I recently had writer’s block for the first time in decades. It was perpetrated by sore hands and wrists, so bad that I was waking up in tears during the night. Just the idea of writing left me staring at a blank page.
Osteoarthritis and rheumatism runs in my family, so this experience had me more than a little concerned, especially since I already follow a healthy diet and exercise lifestyle. How would I find even more healthy options, and especially relief from the pain? Painkillers will be my last choice of remedy. I also don’t want to step away from the computer too often, as Helen suggested in her recent post, though that is a good way to get back into typing shape. But weeks at a time can be tough on the pocketbook.
I quickly found the fastest and easiest relief came from heat, especially hot water soaks. My husband was really quite thrilled that I’d taken over doing all the dishes last month! Epsom salt soaks and soothing capcaisin cream (red pepper) also aided tremendously. This kept me going during a blog book tour, because face it, you can’t promote online if you can’t use your keyboard.
I also remember from my jewelry-making days that copper is considered a holistic remedy for arthritis pain. The research on this is mixed. I believe it’s less about the benefits of absorbing the metal, than the fact that copper is a “heat sink”. That means it absorbs and holds heat very rapidly. I have copper wrist cuffs and that is exactly my experience.
Susie’s Reading Mitts pattern.
What about you? Do you experience hand and wrist pain associated with writing? How do you handle it? Do you have any special techniques to 1. avoid stress and 2. deal with it when it occurs? We’ll share more, including exercise and diet tips, in our ongoing Care and Feed of the Writer series. Shon Bacon is next on Monday with her suggestions for coping.
Dani Greer is founding member of the Blood-Red Pencil. She writes, edits, critiques, blogs, and is Special Projects Coordinator for Little Pickle Press, the coolest environmentally-conscious children's book publisher ever. New and intriguing projects are always of interest to her.