lip problem

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by satchmo shaz, Oct 23, 2010.

  1. satchmo shaz

    satchmo shaz Active Member

    I have an adult pupil who has been playing the trumpet almost a year and he has just started to have problems with his lip swelling, he isnt using undue pressure. I changed him to a bigger plastic mouthpiece to help and also rule out allergies. heres what he says
    "I bought the Kelly 1C mouthpiece and have been using it for a few days. I cannot say it has made any difference. I have reduced my practice to once a day only and do not do more than 30 minutes of little more than a warm –up and gentle exercises. Despite this, the lip problem persists. The swelling appears almost immediately I begin playing but disappears just as quickly once I stop. It becomes more prominent very quickly if higher notes are attempted. Tuning appears alright but the erratic pitching persists and I feel the lip may be the cause. It does not hurt, it is not tender and is virtually imperceptible once the swelling quickly subsides but immediately I resume playing it re-appears !"
    I have told him to rest completely for a few days then gradually start gentle playing long low notes etc. Has anyone come across this before?
    Any thought?

  2. Bones

    Bones Member

    I wonder if his embouchure angle is pushing against the line of his teeth...
  3. satchmo shaz

    satchmo shaz Active Member

    mm dont think so...., its his bottom lip that swells up too


    You could swap it for a saxophone :D
  5. astreet83

    astreet83 Member

    Hi Shaz

    I used to get this problem when I first started playing. If they have the same, its to do with a compound used to make the mouthpiece. I would advise some good lip balm and boiling the mouthpiece with the eggs in the morning for breakfast :)

  6. davidquinlan

    davidquinlan Member

    What happens when just buzzing on Mouthpiece?
    Difficult to say without seeing, could it be anything to do with the angle they hold their instrument. Could be holding too straight for their base teeth formation. ?

    If that makes sense?
  7. T'Psych

    T'Psych New Member

    I am unclear on his m/p history. Was he using a plastic m/p before the recnt change to the Kelly? It makes a difference to the possibility of allergy

  8. grantyg

    grantyg New Member

    Lip balm allergy? they contain lots of nasties!
  9. satchmo shaz

    satchmo shaz Active Member

    was playing on a bog standard 7c , mouthpiece seems ok plating wise
    I suggested bigger plaggy one to help with pressure and allergies
    I dont think its allergies, perhaps over use, have told him to rest a few days and then slowly start playing again
  10. T'Psych

    T'Psych New Member

    If the lips swell immediately on playing and resolved immediately as your first post suggests then I would have thought it is unlikely to be a solely mechanical cause such as pressure. I can't help wondering if this urticarial swelling that does respond so quickly. A doctor would recognise it immediately - but whether they would appreciate having him play a few minutes in surgery is another matter!!!

    I personally might try a antihistamine such as a hay fever tablet before a practice and see if there was still a response.
  11. GordonH

    GordonH Member

    Dehydration may be an issue here.

    If you are not properly hydrated the body can respond to the buzzing and minor pressure by sending fluid to the lips which causes them to swell. Ensuring adequate hydration stops this effect.

    Reduce caffeine intake (or drink equal amounts of water to coffee or coke). Avoid fizzy drinks containign artificial sweetners as they can affect fluid retention.

    I went through a phase of this and found this to resolve it for me.
  12. Di B

    Di B Member

    Sounds odd, but maybe they could record themselves and you can forward the reaction to others to look at?
    Wonders of technology....
    I have no idea - did have an attractive constant rash from my first wick thanks to their 'gold' plating.
  13. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

  14. still learnin

    still learnin Member

    Maybe it's a sign!!!!!! Tell him gardening can be fun. ;)
  15. satchmo shaz

    satchmo shaz Active Member

    quick update, the problem still persists, not quite as bad due to shorter practice sessions and long notes, low notes easy lip slurs etc as warm up
  16. GordonH

    GordonH Member

    I am not a teacher but if it were me I would be tempted to switch them to baritone or euphonium as an interim measure to allow them to improve their musical skill. Then they could consider a switch back to cornet.
  17. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

    - only if that person has fantastic flexibility to support swapping between huge mouthpiece variation! Different groups of facial muscles are used to help maintain embouchure.
  18. GordonH

    GordonH Member

    I didn't say it was easy to do, but it is possible.

    I played french horn from 10 to 14, Euphonium from 14 to 19 (switched because of dental issues), Euphonium and trumpet from 19 to 21 and trumpet/cornet/flugel since 21.
  19. TrumpetTom

    TrumpetTom Member

    Perhaps it's somthing medical a doctor may need to look at

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