Apple Watch causing slight pain in arm!

esaelias187

macrumors member
Jul 25, 2017
47
20
do you think mybe the apple watch series 5 doesn't do this? electic shock or tingly feeling even tho same to series 4 maybe they have perfected it?
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to all the doctors and scientists commenting on here giving examples how it affects nerves why do I get the tingly feeling with the apple watch but not my normal watch then
 
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jaybar

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Dec 11, 2008
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I would suggest that if anyone is experiencing medical issues that might be related to the AW, that they seek medical evaluation and do not rely on a forum.
 
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DeltaMac

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Jul 30, 2003
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its actually not medical you can actually feel it
That would still be "medical", would it not?
Just like you can feel a rash, and you can feel a broken bone, or an ulcer. (Not relating those conditions to the reports in this thread, just suggesting that a medical condition can surely be one that you physically can feel!
 

jaybar

macrumors 65816
Dec 11, 2008
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Neurological, orthopedic and muscular issues can present in strange ways. It amazes me that people come on here to diagnose medical issues and yet are resistant to seeing a health care provider.
 
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Ipadlover29

macrumors 6502a
May 28, 2011
773
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Ended up returning my Apple Watch series 5 last week. I was getting pain in my left wrist and then goes all the way up to my elbow. The pain is much better now that I no longer wear the apple watch, but my wrist, arm and elbow are still not back to 100%. Hopefully all the pain goes away completely. It’s a shame I really liked the watch and miss it. The girl who accepted my return at the apple store was very apologetic and concerned when I told her why I was returning the watch. Ive tried the Apple Watch many times in the last 2 years or so. AW3, AW4, AW5, aluminum, stainless steel, sport band, sport loop, leather loop, third party strap. I guess its just not meant for me. I am a watch person and have always worn a watch since I was younger. Love my swiss army and tissot watches.
 

esaelias187

macrumors member
Jul 25, 2017
47
20
Ended up returning my Apple Watch series 5 last week. I was getting pain in my left wrist and then goes all the way up to my elbow. The pain is much better now that I no longer wear the apple watch, but my wrist, arm and elbow are still not back to 100%. Hopefully all the pain goes away completely. It’s a shame I really liked the watch and miss it. The girl who accepted my return at the apple store was very apologetic and concerned when I told her why I was returning the watch. Ive tried the Apple Watch many times in the last 2 years or so. AW3, AW4, AW5, aluminum, stainless steel, sport band, sport loop, leather loop, third party strap. I guess its just not meant for me. I am a watch person and have always worn a watch since I was younger. Love my swiss army and tissot watches.
I think it is the ios upgrade, I used to wear apple watch series 4 last year it was fine I used to wear 3 it was fine, but why suddenly can I not wear it? I have exacutly the same stiff fingers pain upto elbow
 
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Dave Paris

macrumors newbie
Dec 27, 2019
4
1
Received a Series 2 hand-me-down from son as a gift. Experiencing tingling and numbness and sometimes prickling/mild shocking type feeling in wrist and upper hand only when watch is worn (within an hour of putting it on). I have worn watches for much of my life and have never experienced this, even with a tighter band on prior watches. I've worn the iWatch loose from day one. Have had it for about a week.

This is real folks. The comments I've read about psychosomatic, pre-existing carpal tunnel or rotator cuff issues, psychological, etc., etc., are garbage. It's definitely the watch...period. Some of the comments were actually pretty insensitive to the original poster of the concern, trying to make them feel bad or somehow defective as a person for experiencing these real symptoms.

As a society, we are so bound and determined to "fit-in" and, in this case, be cool by having an iWatch, that we downplay concerns or tell people that they're the ones with the problem. We don't want to hear the truth, especially after paying that kind of money and experiencing the conveniences of having the information on our wrist.

This is a modern-day "Sneeches on the Beaches (Dr. Suess)" story. Heck, and I'm not immune to this either. I like the watch. It was a gift from my son. I just bought a band for it that is coming in two days. I like the convenience of the snippets of information on my wrist. Yeah, I even think it's cool, just like you. So, I'm not saying I'm not affected, just like Sneeches on the Beaches. I am! But, I have to admit to myself that this is real. There are many posts about this. Let's not downplay or make unreal something that is real just because its not what we want to hear.

I haven't decided what I'm going to do yet. I eat organic. I'm mostly vegan. I eat tons of fruit and vegetables every day. I exercise regularly. I perceive my physical body as a "gift" and don't want to intentionally hurt it. So, I'm going to have to give this iWatch thing some deep thought. To everyone who is in this same dilemma, I wish you well in making a good decision for you.
 
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Cyberpower678

macrumors 6502
Apr 28, 2015
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Speaking from a purely analytical standpoint, it’s possible some, not all, watches are grounded with the case and that current might be leaking into it, and thus into the body.

It’s also possible that some humans are more conductive than others and thus more sensitive to current and voltage than others.
It’s possible you routinely use moisturizing Creme on your hands and arms thus increasing the conductivity of your arms and allowing the current to travel into your nerves.

It could be a combination of the above.

Try putting on a rubber case or something non-conductive and start wearing it again and see what happens.
Try avoiding using moisturizer on the area the watch makes contact with including around it, or stop using it entirely.

If you apply to any of the above theories, try it out and report back.
 
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xraydoc

macrumors demi-god
Oct 9, 2005
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After reading several posts, I’ve come to suspect that some people are sensitive to the convex shape of the back of the Apple Watch. May be pressing down on a nerve that a flat-backed watch wouldn’t normally press on.
 

PugMaster

macrumors regular
Nov 5, 2019
173
143
I agree on this. I think if the watch is worn tightly in a specific position, the concave back can press on some nerves. Vibrating etc. can make the fingers feel tingly. I can replicate it with my watches and I am sure it is not grounded and not leaking current.
 

Dave Paris

macrumors newbie
Dec 27, 2019
4
1
Speaking from a purely analytical standpoint, it’s possible some, not all, watches are grounded with the case and that current might be leaking into it, and thus into the body.

It’s also possible that some humans are more conductive than others and thus more sensitive to current and voltage than others.
It’s possible you routinely use moisturizing Creme on your hands and arms thus increasing the conductivity of your arms and allowing the current to travel into your nerves.

It could be a combination of the above.

Try putting on a rubber case or something non-conductive and start wearing it again and see what happens.
Try avoiding using moisturizer on the area the watch makes contact with including around it, or stop using it entirely.

If you apply to any of the above theories, try it out and report back.
Thank you. I will try that.
 

Dave Paris

macrumors newbie
Dec 27, 2019
4
1
I appreciate the responses and insights. I do believe some people may be more sensitive than others. My wife's mother can't even wear any watch because it will stop working due to the conductivity of her body to the watch. She's experienced this over many years with many watches.

Well, I have made the difficult decision today to not wear the watch. I didn't wear it all weekend and then put it on today with my new band and just for the short period of time that I had it on, literally two minutes, I had the sensations come back. I think the concave discussion has merit as well. If I press down on my skin in that area of my wrist without the watch being warn I can "tweak" some nerves in that area. So, thank you for that.

I don't know if you've done a search on fitbit burns or iWatch burns you'll see tons of pictures of folks with burn marks. So, I'm not sure if its the sensors or what. As an avid Apple product owner, I pray Apple looks into this further.

I just want us to be kind to the people experiencing these things.

Thank you for your insights and your kindness.
 

jaybar

macrumors 65816
Dec 11, 2008
1,167
207
The OP might also want to consider medical evaluation as well. It might very well be the watch, but it also might be medical issues that should be looked into.
 

Otflyer

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Nov 14, 2017
1,225
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SF Bay Area
Just wondering if your wearing the watch on the wrist joint and possibly too tight. This might cause binding when the wrist is moved up and down.
 

xraydoc

macrumors demi-god
Oct 9, 2005
7,434
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I appreciate the responses and insights. I do believe some people may be more sensitive than others. My wife's mother can't even wear any watch because it will stop working due to the conductivity of her body to the watch. She's experienced this over many years with many watches.

Well, I have made the difficult decision today to not wear the watch. I didn't wear it all weekend and then put it on today with my new band and just for the short period of time that I had it on, literally two minutes, I had the sensations come back. I think the concave discussion has merit as well. If I press down on my skin in that area of my wrist without the watch being warn I can "tweak" some nerves in that area. So, thank you for that.

I don't know if you've done a search on fitbit burns or iWatch burns you'll see tons of pictures of folks with burn marks. So, I'm not sure if its the sensors or what. As an avid Apple product owner, I pray Apple looks into this further.

I just want us to be kind to the people experiencing these things.

Thank you for your insights and your kindness.
The “burns” are contact dermatitis from irritation — trapped sweat, rubbing/abrasions or allergic sensitivity to the plastic backing (fewer reactions, but can still occur, with the ceramic back on the watches that have them) or nickel in the sport band pin.
 
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Dave Paris

macrumors newbie
Dec 27, 2019
4
1
Thanks again for the recommendations and concerns. You are all so kind!

Purchased a leather cuff (also known, I think, as "Bundy" or "Enforcement" or "Military" or "Aviation") watch band and installed 3M leather adhesive-backed patch kit to the sensor hole (two pieces, a circular one in the sensor hole and a larger piece on the other side, adhesive mating). By the way, had to go through three watch band purchases on Amazon to find one that wasn't chemically stinky. Found a black one (EloBeth Watch Band Compatible with Apple Watch Bands 42mm 44mm Series 5 4 3 2 1 Leather iWatch Band Men (Black Cuff, 42 mm/44 mm). i like it.

You could also just get practically any leather cuff watch band and get the $8 Apple Watch lug kit on Amazon to install it to an Apple Watch and then you wouldn't have to use the leather patch kit from 3M.

So, yes, you do lose the sensor function on the watch. No heart rate, etc.

Note: To use the watch in this mode you have to go into the Apple Watch settings on your iPhone and turn off the sensor function and mess with the security settings so that you don't have the iWatch constantly going into sleep/security mode requiring you to constantly type in your password. Plugging up the sensor hole on my watch band makes the iWatch application think it's not on a wrist. Also, you have to manually reset the security (I guess). I noticed that the security does come back by itself from time to time. So, anyway, this is a less secure way of wearing your watch, if you're concerned about that.

Well, I've had the watch on all week this week at work and so far so good.

I'm going to be really honest here because I think I came down a little like "I know what's going on here and it's definitely real" in my prior message. I really don't know if there is anything mysterious going on with RFs, EMFs, Nickle, other allergies, whatever. My experience may, in fact, be because I haven't worn a watch in many years and the addition of something on the wrist is just hitting a nerve just right. I'm not sure. I did wear it loose with the Apple band. I never have liked a tight watch band. I'm saying this because with my new set-up with the new cuff leather watch band, while it does feel like I am experiencing quite a bit of relief from what I was feeling before, I am also not 100% sure. Again, so far so good, but I don't want to give anyone false hope. It seems to be working for me so far. I will continue to wear the watch over the next month or so and see what I think.

I have enjoyed the iWatch throughout this week. I used the calling function many times this week and have enjoyed having the weather there as well. So, for now, I'm a happy camper.

One last tidbit. If you're a side sleeper at night with your arm extended up over your head, under your face or under your pillow all night, this, I just learned, is a bad posture for sleeping as it pinches all kinds of things in the peck/deltoid tie-in region (nerves, arteries, veins, tendons, etc.). I took the advice because I was experiencing some shoulder pain in the mornings. It took me three days to learn how to sleep on my side with my arms below my head (like in a side prayer type of posture). I do sleep with a pillow between my knees and two pillows on my side. Why am I mentioning this? I'm just sharing the things I have done to try to rule-out any other possible reasons for nerve sensations/deadness in my left hand during that week of wearing the Apple watch directly on my skin (to make sure it wasn't just the watch). What have I noticed thus far after a week of sleeping like this? I have far less shoulder pain in the morning when I wake up. And, again, the new watch set-up seems to be working really well! Fingers crossed!

Thanks all.

Okay, that's it. Sorry for the book!
 
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