Saturday, November 28, 2009


OK, another "Who Knew?" (and do you really care?) post.....
My index fingertip is completely numb. Livable, but super annoying. I thought it would just go away, but here it is a week later, and it's just as numb as day 1. My first thought was carpel tunnel ...but this is the hand that had surgery so that didn't make a lot of sense. I went to assorted medical websites and saw a zillion possible causes. Hmmm. I really didn't have any of the other symptoms listed. So I thought back to when it happened and what I was doing...
I had been spray painting beads....
i put "fingertip numb from spray can" into google...
....and sure enough, there it was! Read this BLOG for great information, and read the comments posted, for more tales about this sucko affliction.
Apparently this is a common side effect from putting too much pressure for too long on a nerve in the fingertip when spraying the paint. Unlike spray bottles that have you pull, ease up and then pull again, spray cans require you to press straight down and hold, and that is where the pressure happens that does the damage. The numb sensation MAY ease up over time - or NOT....and there is nothing you can do about it. .. apparently dead nerves take a while to regenerate, if you are lucky.
BUT I really really think ALL SPRAY CANS (are you listening Krylon?) should carry a warning about this! (maybe they do...I don't think I ever looked....I thought I was being safe by spraying outside and wearing a mask....)
oh well, lesson learned.
There IS A DEVICE made to avoid this malady ever happening, it works sort of like a spray bottle trigger and attaches easily to the spray can...HERE is one, I'm sure there are others
....... as it turns out, when I told my DH what was wrong with my finger, he casually commented...oh yeah, I have one of those in the garage.....
Guess I'll be using it from now on. sigh.


Sherry Goodloe said...

Happy Holidays Connie!

Yes, I've had a few numb fingers in my lifetime from spray cans. However, nothing that lasted as long as yours *no smiles* eeeeeeeeeeee!

I guess I'll be taking your DH's advice and using one of those trigger attachments the next time I need to spray for longer periods of times.

Hope everything clears up soon!

Emme Toaye said...

Hope your thumb gets better quick, magnets are supposed to help blood flow (but not the refrigerator kind).

Marilyn J. Rock said...

Happy Holidays Connie! Oh; this hits home with me! Last summer I spray painted some porch wicker furniture; a loveseat two chairs and a rocker! By the time I was done - my finger was completely numb for days and days - I had to go to a doctor. I had to spray two coats to the furniture. I still have weakness in my index finger to this day! Good post with great advice!

Hope you had a nice Thanksgiving! xxoo Marilyn

Ree said...

OMGosh you have got to be kidding me? I have never heard of that. Wow, that's a bit scary! I so hope you get your feeling back.

I will never look at a spray can the same again LOL

Xoxoxxx Ree

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thudzina said...

I just had this happen yesterday! Thank you for posting this. When things like this happen, it's not hard to let your imagination run away and imagine the worst (whatever that is defined as - laugh). This dreaded spray can finger numbness possibility should indeed be on a warning label. Blessings, and thanks again.

Anonymous said...

Jos from Holland,

I had the same (numb) experience, but listen first l thougt
also that I damaged the nerv in my finger, but later I found
out that my finger was FROZEN by the expanding gas coming out of the nozzle !!!!! So watch out, you can FREEZE !!!!!

Unknown said...

Connie, thnx for posting this! This just happened to me today! Its crazy!

Nikki said...

This just happened to me 2 days ago. Still numb 😩

Anonymous said...

It is now 20 hours after using dashboard shine (spray-can type) and my right index finger still feels numb at the tip though it appears to have somewhat improved last night,but entire finger still feels a bit odd.

I never expected to have this type of reaction as I've always shunned other makes of dashboard shines, I go for Turtle Wax believing these guys really make cool stuff!. Thus I concur with other posts that warning notice be placed on cans about this type of side effect.
I was really worried it might turn out to be a sign of something worse but I'm quite relieved I just might have fiddled with some nerve endings so it will go away soon.

Benson-(Nairobi Kenya)

Unknown said...

I know!! I just sprayed this giant cage for my iguana. I re sprayed the entire cage it's 9ft high 4ft wide 5 ft long and I spent like 2 hrs out in the heat sweating my ass off spaying this thing! When I went in my freaking pointer finger I was spraying with was killing me!!! It is so numb right now it's the next morning! OMG!! It's awful!!! Will this never go away????

Anonymous said...

Well thank you cause you answered my worry I spray painted tonight for about an hour or so myself and now have this as a problem and it's really annoying me

Anonymous said...

The same thing happened to me just yesterday (may 31st). I was using Rustoleum's "comfortable - any angle spray nozzle". Guess it's not so comfortable after all. I need to invest into an air compressor.

Anonymous said...

Literally in day 2 of the numbness, Only in the inside part of my pointer finger. been searching this on the web constantly because this may be one of the most annoying things ever, have not lost any function but have very little feeling. I believe it is Neuropraxia, and I believe it should be resolved in a few days. worst case scenario 6 to 8 weeks.

fingers crossed, as this would suck if it is permanent.

Trish H said...

This happened to me yesterday. After about 15 hours, it's still as numb as when it happened. I can't even type on my phone or ipad because it's a touch screen and my finger is just weird from it.

Unknown said...

I spray painted some Halloween decorations 2 1/2 weeks ago & my index fingertip is still numb. ☹️

視訊聊天室 said...


Unknown said...

I just spray painted this morning. Very numb finger. Great info guys thanks!

TexasDawn1 said...

What the Heck, who knew! I've painted with spray paint years ago and never had this happen!
Today, after 4 cans of Rust-Oleum and a pretty bench, my doggone pointer finger tip is numb! 8 hours later. Yikes.

TexasDawn1 said...

How's your finger? Hope it's getting better.

Unknown said...

It's been a month now since my Index finger went numb from spraying furniture. I thought this is crazy until I Googled it and so many.posta on it. At least I am not a lone. I have hope now that one day it will go back to normal feeling