a little note about RSI
I’ll keep this short because typing is a pain. I’ve been dealing with repetitive strain injury (a general term) on my arms since 2 months ago. It’s a chronic injury from overuse of motor functions. Doing things with my hands and fingers are bound to bring pain and discomfort.
It started with my right hand, so I delegated tasks (like typing or opening doors) to my left hand. Soon after, I started feeling it in my left hand too. I went to saw a general practitioner thinking it was carpal tunnel or cubital tunnel syndrome, but was assured otherwise.
A week or two later, I saw an orthopedist at which I had my hand motor functions tested. The major outer muscles of the hands seem to be okay, so it’s possible that the injury affected smaller, inner muscles or tendons. If it was a case of tendons overuse, then it might take up to 3-4 months to completely heal.
Apparently it takes a few weeks before the injured tendons even start to heal, so there may have been times where I re-injured myself doing simple tasks I thought I was ready to handle. This contributes in prolonging the healing process. I never got a detailed diagnosis as those require multiple scans. I did, however, got reassurance from the orthopedist that it’s nothing too serious to warrant an active treatment. I just need to rest my arms.
I’m still worried because I’ve read about artists who never really got better even after ten months. Or some just learned to live with it for years now.
This can happen to anyone, especially desk-workers and craftsmen. Remember to take frequent breaks. Get up and take a walk every hour or so. If you’ve been drawing all day, try not to spend leisure time on the same workstation (like playing video games or browsing forums). You can find info online about preventive stretches and workplace ergonomics. But remember that rest is most important.
So much for keeping it short. There is still a lot more I want to say but this will do for now. Realistically, I’ll resume drawing at full force by next year. Anything earlier is a blessing. I’ll keep optimistic, so cheers!