Well, we went to Beppu to see the doctor again, and it was a bit better this time. Still no help except 'gambaru' and 'shoganai'. Japanese speakers will appreciate the bucketloads of nuance embodied in those short words! 'Gambaru' means do your best, but it's used a lot more extensively in Japan, with quite a moral undertone. So that's why it can seem like he's saying I'm not trying hard enough.
'Shonganai' is a very short sentence with no pronoun. It means 'can't be helped'. I tried to listen very carefully this time to the words and nuances. I think what he means is that there really is, nothing else that can be done. This is it.
I've spent a lot of time on the computer this week reading as much as I can find about burns, scars, grafts and splints. While I feel he could be doing more for us, for example, finding us a physical therapist, teaching us how to massage or stretch the scar, the splint about all there is to treat it.
But for burn scars, splints, and pressure bandages are what are usually used. Splints especially are used over joints. And the biggest problem with them is patient non-compliance. THAT I can understand! It also reflects what Mum told me about them not using them anymore at the Rest Home - it's easy for a doctor who sees you once a week or month to just say 'Here, wear this 24 hours a day' but Mum's in the front line, treating people on a daily basis, which gives you a much better understanding of how difficult it really is.
So, it's up to me I suppose. Actually even after just two days, the scar is already softening. I've been putting the cream on six or seven times a day, instead of just two, although that'll go back to two or three now that the splint is on all the time. Hopefully with my renewed efforts we will be back to nights only next month.
We will also take it off her at various times during the day. It was off her from after her nap this morning, until after lunch. And it's off now, has been since dinner, and I will put it back on again before we sleep. So she's getting a good chance right now to play and use it.
Here's how the scar looks. This is as far back as her thumb will go, try it yourself and you'll see how limited her range of movement has become in that thumb.
Her skin is reacting to the material in the splint in places, and the straps dig in a bit too, so we are tyring it with tubigrip underneath. HINT HINT NEED MORE TUBIGRIP!
The wicked straps. They were the devil to get on and off the first day, as the leather was new, but they are softening up now. She cannot get it off, but she does chew the thumb. I've been advised to rub vinegar on it - thanks Oonagh!