Rules For Stitches

Posted: May 5th, 2023 under Life beyond writing.

If it itches on the stitches, do not pull or scratch.  Endure the itch.  No, it’s not ready to come loose yet.

Do not catch a stitch with your thumbnail as you turn over in your sleep, or you will wake up wishing you hadn’t.

If your medical folk told you to use just warm water and gently pat…do not decide to use hydrogen peroxide.  (I didn’t.  I have experience with hydrogen peroxide.)

They will itch and sometimes they will hurt.  It’s OK.  It’s less hurt than the injury itself was.  Keep that comparison in mind.

If you have loose, dead, dry, skin hanging down and getting entangled in a stitch, you can cut that off (better, have someone else do it if it’s your lip skin…most of us have crappy depth perception at that distance.)

Like your mother told you when you skinned your knee or something…do not pick the scabs when they start coming loose at the edges. (I always did anyway.   And made them bleed again.  And got scolded for it.  We humans learn *slowly* unless the pain is substantial.)

When you thnik you just *have* to scratch or tug or pick, remember that “It’s all material for something…”  The next time your character has that injury, a stitch in that place, that many stittches or whatever…you have firsthand experience to write it powerfully or humorously or whatever you choose.

I’m telling myself this.  At this moment.  Guess how much good it’s doing and how well I follow my own advice.


  • Comment by Annabel Smyth — May 5, 2023 @ 2:32 pm


    Oh, poor you. It’s almost impossible NOT to scratch, or to pick one’s scabs, I find….

  • Comment by gareth — May 10, 2023 @ 10:26 am


    I still scratch at scabs… and yes my mother told me not to. There was also a time when I got a reward if I went a week without a scab on my knees – she very rarely had to pay out.

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Leave a comment