Reduced grip strength and ability to use your hand effectively; any tips to help?


I’ve read that certain drugs help, but are there any exercises, stretches etc. I could do to help alleviate symptoms?

My left hand is turning into a sort of ‘stiff claw’ and seems to naturally curl up into a fist. Shoe-laces, ties, holding heavyish plates; utter nightmare!

Many thanks in advance of any suggestions or thoughts.

I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (Primary Progressive) in 2007 and take Baclofen (prescription) for muscle spasms. Community Physiotherapist visited me at home in 2009 and sugggested a few exercises I do every morning. Occupational Therapist should visit you at home (Social Services can arrange for this) to do an assessment and see what mobility aids you can use. I use a four wheeled walking frame outdoors (Social Services provided this free of charge) and hold onto a trolley indoors (which I bought on Amazon but Social Services can provide one free of charge). As for footwear, I now wear velcro shoes (without laces, which I bought on Amazon) as I had problems tying up shoelaces in the past - Cosy Feet website also sell footwear suitable for people with disabilities.


It’s worth exploring kitchen aids such as jar openers. If you have an MS nurse they should be able to point you in the right direction. If you can put up with being a little bit over fastidious it would help to make a note of the day to day things you find difficulty with in order to clarify what you need help with.Velcro is good!

Good wishes, Steve

Hya, link below is good site for all sorts of gadgets for the disabled. If you put ‘disabled kitchen aids’ in google you’ll find a bunch more:

Hope that helps. My latest thing is throwing things in the air… fork and lamb cutlet went flying in restaurant recently…

Oh well… ‘I am what I am’…

Pat x

Hi Clucker Pigeon,

Have you had dx yet. Do you think the cause is spasticity or weakness? If it is spasticity then baclofen or tizanidine may help. Stretching fingers etc will also help and a magnesium supplement.

I had this 4 years ago and it went away. I now have spasticity in my right leg. Still no dx yet as only have one cervical lesion and clear LP. I take baclofen and magnesium which helps a bit.

Another idea would be to squeeze a stress ball to exercise muscles in hand.

Take Care

Moyna x

Thanks guys.

No Moyna, no official dx as yet but should receive a neuro apt some time very soon, I sincerely hope! (First cervical MRI in Dec showed 2 lesions, had brain and brain contrast mri in early March and LP a week later plus two blood tests).

My symptoms are so classically ppms that I’d put the mortgage on this being the outcome. I’m 43, have been having serious drop-foot, muscle spasms and balance/coordination issues for the past 6 years, with problems with my left arm and hand starting about 2 years ago and getting progressively worse. I have not been able to run, quite literally, for the past 4 years , can only perform two sets of 25kg on the bicep curl on my left but easily manage 3 sets of 45kg on the right.

Heck, it might be “nothing” and I’ll get patted on the back and sent off to physio, oh joy.

Apologies for innapropriate Easter sarcasm, but dropped some more plates this evening much to the annoyance of my kids, who had to help me sweep the cake off the floor. Hey ho: we’ve all had enough chocolate today anyways.

As you’ve dropped plates on the floor Clucker, would using a trolley indoors help? Contact Social Services, see if they can supply one for free. Or you can buy one on Amazon. I’ve been using one indoors since 2009, mainly to hold onto when I walk and to hold onto when I get up from my chair. But it’s also for carrying food and drink.

Have you thought of buying plastic cups and plates just for you to use?

I have the same problem Pigeon. I’ve been clencing my hand to make a fist and then stretching out my hand and fingers 10 x 3 each day for over a month now and it’s seems to have helped. Somebody mentioned a stress ball, this is what I was looking to buy, I think it’ll help a great deal.

All the best.

Hi hopes all well with you

My right hand is the same as yours l have lost a lot of my grip l am right handed so very hard. Gp sent me to see Dr at the hosptial he is going to operate on it to remove a small lump on the little finger thats the one that curls in to the fist he said it will not get better but will not get worse so fingers Xed just waiting for letter to go in he said may be able to have physo on it, l have a soft ball that l try to squash does not help it just one more ms thing

regards Jan