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hypermobility help watch

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    (Original post by izzy.alice)
    Hi, I am in year 13 and was diagnosed with hypermobile EDS when I was really young, as my mum has it too so they knew what it was pretty much straight away. So I have had plenty of time to find different ways of my managing pain especially at school.

    The main thing that helps me is using a computer in exams which involve a lot of writing. I used to get extra time, or a stopwatch (I would have the same amount of time as everyone else but I could stop my stopwatch and turn my test paper over whenever I needed a break to rest my hands and start it again when I was ready), however neither of these things helped very much. I was still experiencing a lot of pain during exams with these two methods so I found that using a computer was the only way to go. It should be really simple to organise this with your school, just send them an email explaining it and they would probably need to see a doctors note. You will probably sit exams that you need a computer for in a different room to everyone else, but this doesn't necessarily mean you will be alone; in my exams there's usually other people who use a computer too for various reasons. The other thing my school do for me is give me two textbooks for every subject; one to keep and school and one to keep at home so I don't have to carry it to and from school because this was causing me pain as it made my bag very heavy.

    Strengthening the muscles in your hands is important to help decrease your pain. I had physiotherapy for years, (I'm supposed to still do it myself at home but I don't really) and some of the exercises for my hands included using therapeutic putty, doing things like squeezing it repeatedly, or pushing finger tips into it etc. I also learnt piano for years which really helped strengthen the muscles in my hands to support my joints.

    There are also some things you can buy to support your hands but don't rely on these. I use arthritis gloves a lot, they really help when my hands are hurting. My mum bought them so I'm not sure where to get them from but if you're interested (I really recommend them) then I can ask her for you. I was also given little finger splints from the hospital a while ago that looked like this; http://www.opchealth.com.au/content/...r-splints.jpeg (I lost them after like 2 weeks though so I don't really know how well they work), but I know that these are really expensive unless you get them on the NHS like I did. You can also get wrist splints which I use whilst at home, they help with the pain but it's quite difficult to write whilst wearing them.
    I recommend using a fat pen, this makes it easier to grip. It can be quite difficult to find them though so I usually just buy a pen grip to go over a normal pen to make it chunkier and easier to hold.
    Another thing that I've been told helps when writing but I've never actually tried, is writing on a slanted surface. You can buy these things called slant boards but I never bothered because I thought it would be a bit inconvenient carrying it around school all day, however it would be good for exams. During lessons you could use your folder as a makeshift slant board if you find that it helps.

    When I was about 10 I had a pain management course for a couple of months (but this was for my whole body, not just hands) which was where you are taught different techniques of coping with pain. I didn't really find this very helpful but that's just me, it might be something you want to ask your doctor about.

    I hope this helps, I've only talked about things specific to hands, if you ever want me to tell you about how I deal with pain everywhere else I'd be happy to share.
    That was very helpful,thank you. Could you please try and find out where those gloves are from. I will probably try that slant thing, I used to have a folder I used as one,but it was long ago and I forgot about it.

    I don't know if a computer will be a nuisance as I haven't had many tries with it and my last mocks are next week. I might get some grips, they seem to be recommended by a lot of people.
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    (Original post by Nerd_101)
    That was very helpful,thank you. Could you please try and find out where those gloves are from. I will probably try that slant thing, I used to have a folder I used as one,but it was long ago and I forgot about it.

    I don't know if a computer will be a nuisance as I haven't had many tries with it and my last mocks are next week. I might get some grips, they seem to be recommended by a lot of people.
    Honestly using a computer has helped me the most out of everything else in exams. You may not be able to get your school to organise it in time for your mocks but I really recommend you talk to them about it to sort it out before your real exams, it will help you so much.

    Yeah the grips are quite good but I don't really use these much, I mainly use the arthritis gloves and a laptop when I can.

    The gloves are made by IMAK, you can get them from a few different websites, here's one; https://www.stressnomore.co.uk/imak-...BoCrW4QAvD_BwE
    I think you can get them on amazon too.
    They aren't cheap but trust me they are so worth it. As soon as you put them on you can feel the relief. For me they're a bit loose on the wrist so they only relieve pain in my hands and fingers, so if I need to I put a wrist splint on top. I don't normally do that at school though because people ask a lot of questions.
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    I have Hypermobile Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome and from my repeat year 12 I used a laptop in class and exams as the joints in my hands were dislocating too much for me to be able to write effectively. You might want to look into that? I also had rest breaks in exams.

    University was different again, I had more adjustments for exams and more help as my health deteriorated (and continues to do so).

    I didn't find that the oval-8 splints helped though, mainly because my fingers would just get cut up by the plastic. I'm now looking into silver ring splints. You might benefit from oval-8s, my skin is just really fragile.
 
 
 
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