Posts Tagged ‘Therapy’

In February of last year I had bi-lateral carpel tunnel surgery. I wrote about this in an earlier article. The surgeon slices a wide muscle apart to make room for everything else in your hand that slides underneath. The muscle bands grow back together when you heal.

Some people thought I was crazy for doing both at the same time. I was working and had insurance and could have strung out the surgeries over the majority of a year. I had a couple thoughts on the process. If I strung it out I would not be able to play guitar, keyboards or drums for a long time. I know from past experience it takes a while to get your ‘chops’ back when you have not played your instrument for a while. I also knew I would need up build up strength and flexibility after surgery.

I also did not want to have one ‘bad’ hand while my right hand was healing. I would be unable to do a lot of daily stuff anyway, so I might as well do them at the same time.

I have lived with a number of left-handed people all my life. I often tried to mimic them by trying to use my left hand for simple tasks. It also gave me a different perspective on a lot of seemingly unrelated things. After allowing my hands to heal and stitches removed I thought this would be a good opportunity to ‘train’ both hands during physical therapy exercises. So I treated both hands the same. I did the exercises but I also used both hands as evenly as possible to get dressed, eat, and stay alive while my hands were healing and getting stronger.

So as a little challenge, try using your non-dominant hand for everything you can for one week.

Brush your teeth. Write a letter. Comb your hair. Carry a full cup of tea or coffee. Tie your shoes. As much as possible. I really got much better with my left hand during recovery. I did not try to imitate my right hand movements; that just gave me a headache. Rather I looked at my left hand and back at the task and let my hand decide how to move. Give it a try.