According to LocalGolfer.com, there are 56 golf courses in the greater Myrtle Beach area from Loris all the way down to Pawley’s Island. And we know it is not inclusive because Barefoot Resort and Golf with their four courses on premises is not even listed. Myrtle Beach has been known to be a golf mecca where tourists and locals alike eat, sleep and drink the game. With all that activity, we were wondering how do you prevent injuries to your hands?
So we asked Sonia Brodeur-Lyons, Occupational Therapist, how does she treat her patients? She often sees people that have difficulty holding on to their clubs and/or have pain at the base of their thumbs.
According to Sonia, often time people ignore pain signals and will continue to pursue regular activities. However, symptoms that are difficult to ignore is weakness causing someone to be unable to pinch, grasp/grip (opening a water bottle, turning a key in the ignition). The most common condition for that is called: CMC Arthritis which is defined as Carpo MetaCarpal osteo-arthritis. The base of the thumb’s joint is like as saddle which enables us to use our thumb in all different planes/rotation. Over time the cartilage becomes very thin and arthritis sets in.
Although there are several products out there that claim to help like Glucosamine/Chondrontin , most of the Hand Surgeons I have worked with in the past don’t prescribe it but are not totally against it.
How to take care of your Hands/Thumbs !
1. Rest is always best !! Not always realistic.
2. Protect/support using a soft neoprene or rigid brace which needs to be used during activities. Arthritis likes HUGS.
3. Heat or other modalities such as paraffin wax/bath, topical ointments are all good and help as a symptoms/pain relief only. The same goes for NSAIDS (non steroid anti-inflammatory drugs).
4. Joint protection using best possible mechanics will protect your thumb joints. The rule is the more skin the better. Using your thumb and pinching with tips only, puts a lot of stress at the base of your thumb which causes pain/inflammation. A good alternative is to use your palm as much as possible.
Hopefully, you keep Golfing pain free !!!
Hopefully this helps and take good care of your hands you need them for ALL basic cares !!!! See a Hand specialist when you have early symptoms don’t wait !
Sonia Brodeur-Lyons, OTR/CHT (Occupational Therapist/Certified Hand Therapist).
This is a great soft neoprene brace that I strongly recommend. It provide support to the base of the thumb where needed and can be used during activities including golfing !
Thank you Sonia and happy pain-free golfing!