Clenched hands/fist problem

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by lgp, Apr 15, 2008.

  1. klutzo

    klutzo New Member

    For about 3 months now, I wake up almost every morning with my arms crossed across my chest and my fists clenched, as if I am protecting myself and ready to fight if attacked.

    On my right hand, my nail has dug into the palm so much that I now have a small benign tumor in the palm of my hand, on the tendon below my last two fingers. The doctor says it's a Dupuytrens Contracture, and it may grow and force my last two fingers into a permanent curl. He said if it gets to where I can no longer put my hand flat on a table, I need to see an orthopedic surgeon right away.

    I think I do this because I have endured so much emotional pain and financial stress recently, and am subconsciously trying to protect myself from more.

    I do agree that fibro people have their muscles in shortened position most of the time. When I had surgery and they put my arm at a 90 degree angle to my body, they ripped my main shoulder muscle in half. That hurt a lot more than the simple surgery I had done and required 6 weeks of PT and exercises I must do for life.

  2. susanrcp

    susanrcp New Member

    OMG! I am so glad I am not alone with this problem. For years, I have clenched my fists while I sleep. I, also, do it unconsciously while I am awake. I keep my nails clipped because they dig into my palms while I am asleep. And just like some others have mentioned, I sometimes have my thumbs tucked inside. Sometimes I, also, do the arm up in the air thing. And when I wake up I am usually gently tickling the arm that is up in the air. LOL Something else that I do is I have been having the same recurring nightmare for years. I have always been terrified of the dark. In my dreams, I walk into a dark room and try to turn on the lights and they won't turn on. So, I walk to another room and try to turn on the lights and they won't turn on either. I, then, wake up crying or my boyfriend will wake me up because I am crying in my sleep. He knows when I am having this dream. Now I sleep with two aquariums in my room and leave their lights on as a nightlight. When I think I am in the dark, I can open my eyes and see the light from the Aquariums and feel much better. I really wish I knew why I did all these quirky things while I sleep.
  3. RENA0808

    RENA0808 Member

    I had this sooo bad when I first got hands when I woke up were like CLAWS!!!!
    The pain was awful and it took a while to get movement back in my hands.

    I was given hand splints by my rheumy and they work great!They have a metal splint on palm side to keep your hand from turning down into your fist or wrist.They have velcro straps to keep on your fingerless gloves.

    Please check them out because I would be in so much pain without them.

    a GODSEND!

  4. TKJames

    TKJames Member

    Well I too went searching to see if I could find anything about people who have clenched fists all the time and I found this!! I have Fibromyalgia and wondered if it was due to it. I see that I'm not alone!! Here I thought it was just me. lol My fiance pointed it out to me that I was doing this and he's been so worried that I had a stroke or something. I sleep with them balled up under my chin a lot. I've been thinking about hand splints but work on the computer all day, so that would be an issue. But at least know I see that it's most likely due to the fibro.
  5. RENA0808

    RENA0808 Member

    This is soooo common in fibro!It can be so painful waking up like this.
    I always (even now)arrange my hands UNDER my pillows to help but they always end up in back to same position if I dont wear the splints!!
    Look how many people have looked at this post!
    Keep your nails short!
  6. Bruin63

    Bruin63 Member

    hope i am doing this right, it's a new board to me, as i don't get here to often.

    i used to be here all the time, but noww the hands keep me from typing.

    you might want to check out dupuytrens i was finally dx'd by my ortho dr.

    i have fibro, along with a bunch of co existing conditions.
    this is one of them , and i hope it might explain some of the symptoms,

    i typ with shaky hands, and i have digital cysts in my fingers.

    i have most of the symptoms, and i alredy had one urgery on my right hand, did not heal right, and now
    they hurt and always clenched.

    hope you find answers ,
  7. Yesthatsme

    Yesthatsme Member

    Hello people,

    Nothing wrong with it at all :)

    Here is my story:

    I'm perfectly healthy 33 years old male. (professional athlete, trainer)
    Been in perfect health and shape since i was a kid. No allergies, no pain, no drama. Had a perfect childhood and adult life as any can get ;) Not bragging, just trying to prove a point ;)
    Since i can remember i been holding my thumb in a fist position. My parents noticed it at a very young age, and they just laughed at it, as they correctly did. Since nothing is wrong with it nor me ;) It's just a habit i guess i kept from infant.

    I do it daily! often without realizing I'm doing it. When i watch TV, relax, standing, sitting etc. I do it all the time. sometimes with left hand sometimes with right, sometimes both. But i always do it while falling asleep. And i squeeze it so hard that i wake myself up. So i turn around and put my hands under the pillow flat so i can relax. But often i find myself going back to it. Anyway, what's the cause and is it any harm? I think no cause, just a habit, and it haven't done me any harm at all. Am i a stress person and anxious? sure ;) i mean who isn't in adult life? do i worry much? sure i do ;) but having my own business and work on my mind all the time, who wouldn't be? :) but come on..was i also worried and stress as a child? what worries would i have back then? :) So i think it's just a habit. Nothing wrong with me at all, as i said, I'm perfectly healthy, expect now I'm wearing glasses ;) and i do suffer from zoophobia, but only because I've been attacked by those crazy dogs :) Nothing else wrong with me as i competed in very high level in sports. Do i have a temper? uhhhm sure i do :) just a little ;)
    I just woke up from squeezing my thumb so hard, i said to myself let me Google it, and i find this thread. And i read your worries and theories. So in conclusion i don't suffer from what some of you believe. I just convinced myself that it's just a habit :) And to quote the dad from American pie " it's perfectly normal" ;). welcome to the club people and enjoy and be proud of what we have ;)
  8. RENA0808

    RENA0808 Member

  9. tamsyn

    tamsyn Member

    I clench my teeth at night...and am wrecking them, according to my dentist. Being aware of clenching any body part is the first step. Then, trying some meditation? I find that doing Jon Kabat Zinn's "body scan" CD (see his site) does help me to consciously relax my muscles even if they have got tight due to fibro...this is not a cure but it does help with tenseness.
  10. Alyssa-Admin

    Alyssa-Admin Active Member

    Hi there, I have just been doing some research on this...and it certainly seems like this and teeth clenching/grinding are very high on the list for people with FM. I would like to share with you what I copied as a good exercise to try...(and yes, almost all of the responses that came back were about anxiety...I wonder how much of it is also related to pain as well...). Right, here is something to try:

    .One trick I learned from PT years ago is to wrap some tennis balls around your palm with some ace bandages or those sport wraps. The balls will prevent you from clenching or curling your arms up too tight.'

    Part of me also wonders if there is a correlation between this and with Chronic Myofascial Pain - and trigger points...but I have yet to find research on this aspect...

  11. susieburgess

    susieburgess Member

    I wake up every morning with my right fist clenched so tight it feels really exhausted but not painful. There seems to be two types of symptoms. I don't have any of the Lyme disease symptoms so I think it must be stress related because I have suffered from it from time to time before and it's gone away when the stress goes away. I also have unusual nightmares of a black background with a white circle chasing a white line and trying to swallow it. How weird is that?
    Don't lock me up!
  12. My hands clench up mostly at night. My neck pulls down to my right. I have serious memory problems and my hand writing gets very shakey when stressed. I get writers cramp easily. I have had multiple autonomic system failures including breathing/lung problems and stomach/digestion problems. I discovered a few months ago it is a genetic neurologic movement disorder I have a mild case of called dystonia that is making my hands curl up and tightly clench. It is intermittent, comes and goes with no warning, clearly worsens with stress and anxiety. Dystonia also causes clenching of teeth, unending twitching of my eye lids, etc. I recommend reading the book Diagnosis Dystonia by Tom Seamon (2015).

    I was misdiagnosed all my life, told it was fibromialgia before, which it may be as well, sure. This book has given me answers that no doctors or specialists in my 48 years of life could explain nor provide. A specialist recently suggested I've had this neurological disorder since birth that has been misdiagnosed because its a mild case that doesn't present with clear permanent symptoms or disfigurement. I post this in the hopes it will provide others with the answers that have evaded me all my life. Do your best to live stress free, meditate, stretch daily, get massages, make immediate neuro friendly dietary changes, and go for physical therapy, as well as aqua therapy. I do all of these things weekly to continue to function as normally as possible for me. I sincerely hope this helps someone else in search of answers as I have been all of my life. Inner peace, out.
  13. I'm 52 male and I just caught myself clenching my fist. I do it so much it hurts my hand. So I took a glove and sewed popsicle sticks on the inside, they are long enough to keep your hand open during the day or night, whenever you do it the most. It does help and keeps me from clenching. I hope this helps someone as it helps me. Maybe someone can invent a glove like this that works a little better