Why a Thumb is Important

sponge bob thumbSorry book readers, I have a personal post today. It’s about swollen, sore fingers and the troubles they cause. For the past month and a half I have dealt with a swollen thumb. You would think it would be no problem, but once you have an injured thumb you immediately realize what an asset it is. My poor thumb on my right hand, which is my dominant hand, is twice as big as the thumb on my left hand. Along with my poor thumb, I have a few other fingers that have swollen as well.

It seems you never know how important your body parts are until you injure one of them. With that being said, I thought I would jot down my experience with this so when I am better and able to do all these things again with ease, I will have this list to remind me to never take my thumb and fingers for granted again. 😉

Here are some things I realized I use my thumb for:

  • Getting dressed – yes, your thumb is essential when you get dressed…who would have thought, right? I realized it’s very hard to pull up pants because you use your thumb to grip as you pull them up and you also use your thumb to fasten the button too. For women, putting on a bra is almost impossible with an injured thumb – try gripping two pieces of material at opposite ends of your body, behind your back, and pull them together to fasten…whew and OUCH!
  • Styling hair – I hate to admit this but it hurts just to comb your hair! Yes, you use your thumb to hold a brush which isn’t too bad. What causes the pain is styling your hair. An easy task of putting your hair in a ponytail hurts like nothing else as you try to twist the rubber band around your hair. Don’t even get me started on trying to blow drying or straightening – if hair tools are involved, it becomes much more difficult and complicated!
  • Driving – well driving itself isn’t the problem. It’s actually putting on a seat belt (which you have to grip and pull around your body) and then turning the key in the ignition. Who knew turning a key could hurt SO much, but it does…mostly in the morning when your body is still trying to loosen up from a night’s rest. Depending on how swollen your thumb is, you might need to use your other hand to help turn the key. Seat belts are another area where you use your thumb. I never realized I unbuckled my seat belt by hitting the release button with my thumb…now I try to use my middle finger.
  • Opening pill bottles – my doctor prescribed an anti-inflammatory pill to help with the swelling and pain (because my thumb is not the only part of my body that is sore and swollen, but that’s another story); however, the bottle they come in has a little tab that you need to push down while you twist the top open. One hand twists the top off while the other hand pushes the tab down…now guess which finger normally does the pushing – the thumb! And boy is it difficult to do when it’s swollen twice its normal size!
  • Writing – holding a pen and pressing it to paper is hard when your thumb can’t bend due to the swelling. Luckily hand writing isn’t the dominate form used to document things these days. Typing is way easier and, lucky for me, the way we communicate these days. I love computers!
  • Deep cleaning – forget about cleaning because to really scrub something, it takes all your fingers including your thumb to grip the clothe, sponge, brush, or whatever you use to clean a dirty toilet, shower, mirror, stove, floor, etc. Then to apply pressure to clean the area is near impossible.
  • Reading a book – and this is the sadist of them all. Holding a book is hard to do. It’s okay if you’re only holding it for a few moments, but readers know this is not the case when it comes to reading a good book. After a few pages, your thumb begins to throb under the weight and you try to adjust it so you can enjoy a few more pages…adjust and read, adjust and read until your thumb just can’t handle it anymore.

Okay, I think you get the point. I miss my thumb.

Anyone else going through the same thing and realizing how important a healthy functioning body is?

4 responses to “Why a Thumb is Important

  1. I love my thumbs because they’re my main excuse to call myself superior to my cats. They want the door opened? They gotta wait for me because I have opposable thumbs in the house. How power hungry am I.

    • I don’t know what the cause is, but I have inflammation throughout my body…and in January my thumb decided to swell (along with a few other fingers). Hopefully I’ll get some answers soon because it really is painful and annoying.

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