Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by K-Mo, Aug 21, 2004.

  1. K-Mo


    Aug 21, 2004
    i havent played my bass in a while, and a few days ago, my friend called me up and said if we wanna start up the band again, we got a gig to do. i said hell yea. So after a few jamming practices, i have a huge blister on my thumb, its really annoying. So i'm asking you experianced bassists, who have probably had many blisters before, should i wait for it to heal (my gig is in 8 days), or pop it and put a bandaid on????
  2. mnadelin


    Apr 6, 2003
    Kalamazoo, MI
    Happened to me a little while ago. I would recommend just letting it heal on its own, since it takes about a week. Only thing is, when I had mine, I did that, and it ended up peeling off and I lost all the callous I had built up. So sorry not to give you definitive advice. For what it's worth, my mother who's a nurse told me to let it heal, so that means it's either good to let them heal or you're a wuss if you don't pop them.
  3. Ozzyman


    Jul 21, 2004
    I just play through them and if they begin to really hurt then I won't play as hard but if you have a gig in 8 days then let it heal.
    Actually I don't remember having a blister since last year!
  4. Maurice Carr

    Maurice Carr

    Aug 7, 2004
    Mt Wellington, Auckland, NZ
    Authorised BFM and fEARful cab builder: New Zealand
    That must be real awkward to play with a thumb blister. Perhaps you already know this but if you are going to pop the blister, then make sure you use a sterile needle and don't prick directly over the blister but put the needle under the skin about 4 - 5mm away (1/4"). Go just underneath the skin into the blister area, that way the blister top remains intact and you minimise the risk of getting infections, plus it heals much quicker - that's what I would do anyhow for what it's worth.
  5. wulf


    Apr 11, 2002
    Oxford, UK
    Which thumb? Fretting or plucking hand?

    At my gig with Lovesjones last week the monitoring wasn't particularly clear and so I ended up playing much harder than I normally do. Towards the end of our second set I could see a blister beginning to form on the first finger of my plucking hand. To make it through to the end of the gig, I played a bit lighter and also made use of other playing techniques (eg. playing slower passages with the side of my thumb or alternating the second and third rather than first and second fingers). It never actually became a full blown blister but probably would have done so if I'd tried to play on regardless.

    There are enough ways of striking the strings that you can probably let the thumb have a few days rest to recover naturally. However, make sure you do plenty of practise to get the other fingers toughened up and, when it comes to the gig, try to ensure that you're loud enough so that you can play quite lightly. Look after your fingers and they'll look after you :D

  6. I had a badass blister on my middle finger once, that was hell, and I popped it - never pop a blister. Never ever ever ever ever. Let it heal - push comes to shove, you whack a bandaid on it.

    Never ever ever pop a blister. Never ever.

    Never. :scowl:

  7. cowsgomoo

    cowsgomoo gone to Longstanton Spice Museum

    Feb 8, 2003
    there's no miracle cure... superglue can help reinforce youur skin a bit if your fingers are on the verge of blistering, but once they've blistered I tend to puncture them with a (clean)needle and press the water out...

    try and avoid tearing or peeling the skin and the dead skin on top should set you on your way to a nice callus

    don't bite them!!!

    i've tried a product called Germolene 'New Skin' (dunno if it's only a British brand or what) which covers your skin and seals it, a bit like superglue, but I found it wears off your fingertips as you play, and I'm not sure whether your fingers wouldn't be better healing in fresh air...maybe good for open cuts and scraped-open blisters but not much else
  8. wulf


    Apr 11, 2002
    Oxford, UK
    The advice from NHSDirect (the online service of the British National Health Authority) is to leave them alone unless they are infected, keep the area clean and to cover them if they burst of their own accord. Further information (including what to do if you get blisters that aren't the result of an obvious cause like pounding away on the strings of your bass) can be found on their blisters page.

    Wulf (NHS Webmaster, although not involved in the NHSDirect site)
  9. +1 - I bit my last one, man, blister juice taste gross! :pukes: