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  1. #1
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    Concerning Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

    Hello everyone,

    A recent concern that has crossed my mind is carpal tunnel syndrome(CTP). I know a couple of guys that have this diagnosis and deal with it in thier own way; wrist braces, switching hands, ignoring its existence, whatever...
    Some people that do have it and say that they got it from drawing too much causing thier hand to go completely limp for a period of time. This is a concern for many artists because we draw so much, and a hinderance such as CTP could mean trouble in a career where you are required to draw 10-12 hrs a day.
    So, how do you avoid this kind of problem, and if you do have it how do you deal with it at the work place? Is it really all that bad or is it something someone can deal with as long as breaks are taken throughout the day? I don't have it, yet.. but if I ever do, or any of my friends do, I would like to be prepared to deal with it.
    Your thoughts ...


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  3. #2
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    I wouldn't think this would be an issue for artists unless you hold your hand in the same exactl position when you draw and don't move it at all, and I don't think anyone really does that. I could be totally off-base, though.

  4. #3
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    I know three artist that have had this problem and have moved into the industry since. They were great artist because they drew so much, but exausted the limit of thier body. Maybe the problem is partially genetic... but it is definitely a concern for artist. Other people I know in the industry of animation or students in school tell me of their co-workers/friends that eventually run into this problem. I don't mean to sound cynical, but is it any wonder why some artists are called "wrists."(workers who draw a lot)

  5. #4
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    My step-father is a painter. He is in his 40's and has recently had his second Carpal Tunnelling operation

    I think its something that shouldn't be taken lightly and its alot more common than you think.

  6. #5
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    Isn`t it possible to train the wrist or the muscles that are tilteng-and-whatnot the arm ? I have a very thin wrist and i lift weights frome time to time and my wrists were hurting so i got myself one of those "Wristballs" (or Gyrotwisters and how they are called) and work with it on a almost daily basis. But i don`t know if its any useful because i don`t really sense a difference. <_<
    After all i don`t really know what the CTP exactly is..i just heard that its sheere paine when moving the hands...
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  7. #6
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    I think it can be avoided if you do some excercise with the arm, wrist and hand. And also if you keep at a good position, it's less likely to happen.
    When i draw with my tablet for 8 hour non stop, my right hand (the drawing hand) would be fine, except my fingers may get "locked" to that pen holding position and take a bit of time to get flexible again. But I don't have any wrist or finger pain. But my left wrist would get the pain, because I use my left hand for short cut keys and it's always rest on the keyboard at an awkward position, while my right arm is stretched out comfortably.

    I get shoulder pain when I paint with traditional mediums though, since I have to keep my hand suspended in air and avoid touching the paper. Maybe that's why I'm so impatient when it comes to drawing with traditonal stuffs.

  8. #7
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    id say the areas more at risk would be your lower half, seeing as you sit for so long..

  9. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by 'stoph.
    id say the areas more at risk would be your lower half, seeing as you sit for so long..

    ya, like hemroids

  10. #9
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    I dealt with repetitive stress in my wrists for a bit. Getting a good chair with arms and a good desk helps a whole lot. Learning to not grip the pencil so tight helped as well. If you are using a wacom, change the settings so it has a lighter touch. Thats my 2 cents.

  11. #10
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    I've been having some problems with my wrist too.. always when I've used a wacom for extended periods, like 8 hours or longer with very few and too short breaks. Not sure if it's CTP or just ordinary pain. If it becomes really painful I usually put my hand in hot water and "stretch" it. That usually helps for a while and lets me continue working.

    Never had any real problems when using ordinary pen or paper though. Painting traditionally is probably the best way to go if you don't want to ruin your wrists, I guess.

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    My pain most of the time is in my shoulder, but thats because my pose is bad, I'm trying to work on it before I get RSI
    Life is study

  13. #12
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    Years ago I used my wacom so much I messed up my shoulder, I'd use it for everything on the computer not just drawing. I couldn't lift my hand above shoulder level no matter how hard I tried. That was with a 12x18, with a smaller tablet the wrist would be more affected than the shoulder. I think regular breaks to stretch and excercise the joint is the way to treat it whether it's shoulder or wrist.
    I ain't gonna work on Maggie's farm no more.

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    try " acupuncture "

  15. #14
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    I use to get pains in my hand, i would say a small version of carpel tunnel. But i got it from using the mouse all the time, and not being in a good position on the computer. I stopped using my mouse, i now use a smaller tablet, for my mouse. And stopped using the computer a bit less, and my wrist is much better now, it doesnt even really bother me anymore, unless i do digital painting with my tiny tablet. I will probably, buy a bigger one for painting

    If it is really bothering you, and if you can take 3 weeks, off, its worth it. Your wrist will heal itself a bit, and then you can set your self up better, and keep up with your wrist, so it doesnt get to the point of real bad pain again.

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