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Pesky, painful thumb cracks - what to do?

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  • Pesky, painful thumb cracks - what to do?

    Every winter, I get deep cracks in the skin on my thumbs, at the inside corner of my thumbnails. This year, they've come very early. It got so bad last week that my thumb was throbbing.

    I've tried Newskin, heavy duty moisturizer, Vaseline with bandaids over it, and nothing makes it go away. I'm lucky if it get a little better. I'm careful to moisturize my hands and always wear gloves when it's cold, and if my gloves get wet, I change them (the delight of frostnip taught me that), but it looks like it's going to be a tough winter for my thumbs.

    Does anyone else have this problem, and any solutions?
    The aids are the legs, the hands, the weight of the rider, the whip, the caress, the voice and the use of extraneous circumstances. ~ General Decarpentry

  • #2
    My husband had those cracks. The only thing that fixed it was Dynamite's Wound Salve.


    • #3
      A friend's father who's a doctor uses super glue on the cracks he gets on his hands. He swears by it.
      CRAYOLA Posse: PLUM


      • #4
        The only thing that I've had work is wetting my finger (water) and dipping into the sugar bowl a few times a day. After 2 or 'dunks' they are much less painful & seem to be ok for a few more weeks.

        Perhaps I should try this with my feet & the heel cracks? Hmmm, definitely not for the regular sugar bowl...
        Watermark Farm
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        • #5
          Put Super Glue on it.
          "When life gives you scurvy, make lemonade."


          • #6

            Have you tried the Neutrogena Norwegian Formula Hand Cream? I use it every night before I go to bed.

            Do you moisturize every night?
            Sorry! But that barn smell is my aromatherapy!
            One of our horsey bumper stickers! www.horsehollowpress.com
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            • #7
              Bandaids and Neosporin. The Neosporin is the trick. I get them on all my fingers as soon as
              the weather starts to get cold. It doesn't stop them from happening but it does heal them up quickly. Something that does help them from starting is wearing surgical gloves as much as you can when you are getting your hands wet. Even at the barn when you are doing tack. I think the constant wet/drying syndrome is what aggravates the skin.

              Hell hath no fury like the chestnut thoroughbred mare


              • #8
                I also use neosporin but use the PLUS with the analgesic in it. I really primarily use the generic triple antibiotic ointment PLUS. It does have to be the ointment, not the cream.
                Producing horses with gentle minds & brilliant movement!


                • #9
                  I have found that if I can keep my thumb nails a bit on the long side ("long" for me is even with the top of my thumb) it helps defeat the cracks. If I succumb to my habit of picking and peeling my nails, I'm doomed with cracks until they grow out again.

                  Ditto the bandaids and Neosporin if things get bad... Good Luck!
                  Riding: The art of keeping a horse between you and the ground.


                  • #10
                    All of the above!
                    Preventative: Neutrogena Hand Cream, or the CVS version
                    In the cracks: clean out with mosturizing soap, and fill with bag balm
                    Trim the nails back in the corners, and ditto for the skin on either side of the crack itself.
                    On the farm: wear latex gloves whenever handling water; wear gloves all winter
                    If your SO can stand it: before bed, cream or lotion condition your hands, apply bag balm to the cracks and on top of the lotion to seal it in, put on either latex or white cotton gloves and go to sleep for the night.
                    "The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits." Albert Einstein



                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Chief2 View Post
                      before bed, cream or lotion condition your hands, apply bag balm to the cracks and on top of the lotion to seal it in, put on either latex or white cotton gloves and go to sleep for the night.
                      Agree with this! I use the super thick Vaseline lotion (forget the exact name right now) and white cotton gloves. It's not as much of a problem for me now that I'm in school and not working, but when I was working in a vet hospital and washing my hands ALL the time, I used to have the same problem and the lotion + gloves really helped. Sometimes I would take them off in my sleep, though, and I always found one inside the other like I would remove a pair of latex gloves!

                      I've also been known to put Super Glue on the cracks. It's the same thing as tissue glue, more or less.

                      Adams Equine Wellness


                      • #12
                        Working Hands Cream. It's made for hands that crack and bleed.


                        • #13
                          Put bag balm all over your hands, put some cotton gloves on and have sweet dreams.

                          The Vermont Country Store is a good resource for many needs: http://www.vermontcountrystore.com/b...8?evar3=SEARCH
                          "The best thing for the inside of a man is the outside of a horse" Lord Palmerston


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by easyrider View Post
                            Every winter, I get deep cracks in the skin on my thumbs, at the inside corner of my thumbnails. This year, they've come very early. It got so bad last week that my thumb was throbbing.

                            I've tried Newskin, heavy duty moisturizer, Vaseline with bandaids over it, and nothing makes it go away. I'm lucky if it get a little better. I'm careful to moisturize my hands and always wear gloves when it's cold, and if my gloves get wet, I change them (the delight of frostnip taught me that), but it looks like it's going to be a tough winter for my thumbs.

                            Does anyone else have this problem, and any solutions?
                            yeah i used to get that dont any more its due to circulation so keep the hands warm
                            ie buy finger less gloves they like gloves with the tipof thefinger missing so you can do your jobs and ride but not have the gloves interfere with anything you do
                            problem goes then its cause your hands are cold

                            you want these ones http://www.google.co.uk/products?hl=...num=1&ct=title

                            prefeable the thermal ones


                            • #15
                              Bag balm might help. Also try to keep bandaids on.
                              I realize that I'm generalizing here, but as is often the case when I generalize, I don't care. ~ Dave Barry


                              • #16
                                Ditto the gloves at night - I started doing this last year and it REALLY helped. And use super glue. I also found a product at Wal Mart that you put on like nail polish - it helped as well.

                                But the clincher was using a good shea butter cream and sleeping with cotton gloves on. Very geeky but useful


                                • #17
                                  I have had better luck with the Bickmore Gall Salve than the Neosporin, it seems to work quicker and toughen up the thumb corners a little. My thumb cracks are usually much better after one night.


                                  • #18
                                    Start with an ounce of prevention, after you wash your hands, take an emery board to the skin, keeping the dry skin down will help prevent the cracks. Do glue them shut, after you clean them well, this will help them heal and keep infection out. Keep the skin in good shape, bag balm is excellent. Most dermatologists recomend Polysporin over Neosporin.

                                    As soon as that skin starts to get thick, file it down, and keep it moisturised, I know this can be a chore in and of itself, but it pays off in spades.
                                    FMO:OMG I almost put my eye out hunting clique.


                                    • #19
                                      For a quick fix while out and about, fill in the crack with ChapStick
                                      Founder of the I LOFF my worrywart TB clique!
                                      Official member of the "I Sing Silly Songs to My Animals!" Clique


                                      • #20
                                        Bag balm

                                        You may have some luck wearing gloves at night. Those spa glove thingies. Goop up your hands with whatever potion you like and then put the gloves on. A dab of bag balm and bandaid may help in the daytime, as will wearing gloves or mittens at all times while working outdoors.
                                        Brothers and sisters, I bid you beware
                                        Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.
                                        -Rudyard Kipling