Forums: Climbing Information: Injury Treatment and Prevention: Re: [markcarlson] Fingertips won't toughen up: Edit Log


Apr 23, 2013, 10:33 AM

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Registered: Apr 12, 2013
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Re: [markcarlson] Fingertips won't toughen up
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markcarlson wrote:
My hands have looked like that on a number of occasions after climbing. I currently use Climb On and other moisturizers several times a day (it's very dry here.)

I'm not sure it will help, as there could be a number of causes, but here are a few things I've noticed that contribute to the problem when it happens to me:

- Diet. I just figured this one out a few months ago, and had been a problem for the past 15 years of my life! The only two things I've changed in my diet is to not eat so much at night before bed, and to drink a little more when I eat. I used to get really bad itchy bumps on my fingers in the morning, which would cause all sorts of peeling on my hands... not any more!

- Not climbing on a consistent schedule. If I take a week or more off of climbing, my pads will likely peel a few days after climbing again.
- Climbing steep stuff with big jugs or any big, grippy holds. My tips rarely get shredded in the gym by anything else.
- Skin is too hydrated before climbing. Since I live in the prairies, this is more of a problem when climbing in a humid environment (Squamish,) esp. after a few days of rain.

It's almost as if my hands are the opposite. I climb 3-4 times a week and the second my hands touch the holds they start to peel. I was even just trying on a pair of shoes and the contact with the rubber caused them to dry out! I use cortisone creme and climbon nearly every day to keep them moisturized and after a few days they start to look normal. But then they start peeling the second I touch the wall again.

I haven't taken more than 4 days off in the past 3 months, so I'm taking a week off just to see what happens. I can't climb daily because my fingers just start to hurt so much.

In reply to:
Finally, I find that it takes my fingertips two to three weeks to recover from a shredding that bad. Between 3 to 10 days after they get shredded, they go "glassy", which isn't quite the same as being callused. After 10 days, the skin transitions back to its normal, pliable self, but is much more robust. I continue to climb the whole time, even with very raw skin.

I really wish I could climb all the time like that. My fingertips are feeling glassy today after a day off of climbing, i'll give it a few more days and see. Thanks for all the advice! I'll definitely start drinking more water.

(This post was edited by LukeW on Apr 23, 2013, 10:56 AM)

Edit Log:
Post edited by LukeW () on Apr 23, 2013, 10:56 AM

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