June 23, 2021 1 min read 0 Comments

What is Hair Cutters Cramp also known as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome or CTS?

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a condition where the median nerve which controls the thumb, index finger, traffic finger and the thumb side of the ring finger is pinched. The pinky finger is not affected since it is controlled by a different nerve. If in a hair salon a stylist suddenly drops their shears because their fingers and thumb go numb this could be cause by CTS. Often stylists, barbers and groomers will be seen shaking out their fingers and stretching their hands between haircuts. Often they find relief through icing their wrists or wear splints.

What causes carpal tunnel syndrome in hair stylists?

It is not truly known what actually causes carpal tunnel syndrome. However two factors related to hair styling are what doctors and scientists say contribute to the development of this.

  • It is more common in women (stylists are majority female in the United States and many countries) It can be flare up due to weight gain such as in pregnancy and monthly bloating.
  • Inflammation due to repetitive motion as in hair cutting can contribute to carpal tunnel syndrome.

Written by Bonnie Megowan. Bonnie is a shear sharpener trainer and teaches sharpening through her Youtube channel and in person. Her company Bonika Shears produces the Bonika Shear line of shears. She is available for consultation about shears and sharpening.