From employees doing their nine-to-five jobs in front of desktops and laptops to the local consumer browsing the web, it’s undeniable that technology has become a vital aspect of our lives. Our dependence on technology has made us more prone to wrist-related injuries by overusing our devices. Although they have made our lives simpler, they have also made us more exposed to having fragile hand and wrist health.
Overuse of digital devices
The act of texting, swiping, scrolling, and typing creates a series of repetitive stress on your hands and wrists, similar to sports, such as baseball and golf. Although these actions put less stress and require less force, the consistency of motion adds up the wear and tear to the joints and the tendons. That can lead to swelling, pain, and reduced mobility due to inflammation.
In this article, we will analyze three common hand and wrist injuries and what you can do to treat them.
1. Carpal and cubital tunnel syndrome
One of the more common wrist conditions, carpal tunnel syndrome is diagnosed as the build-up of pressure on the wrist’s median nerve, which is connected to the thumb, index, ring, and middle fingers. It’s typically associated with excessive texting and typing. A similar condition, known as the cubital tunnel syndrome, affects the remaining fingers of the hand, namely, the ring and pinky fingers.
If you’re diagnosed with either syndrome, you have different options for alleviating the prickling tingling and numbness. For instance, splinting is a viable solution to relieve the stress of the nerves. However, surgery is also possible to rearrange the nerves’ positioning and relieve pressure.
2. Texting thumb
Texting thumb, or medically classified as De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis, is a swelling on the tendons around the base of the thumb. The thumbs’ tendons are covered with a slippery layer of tissue, which can be agitated through repetitive strains. After enduring enough stresses, the inflamed layer causes friction and pain for thumb and wrist movements.
Treatment for De Quervain’s syndrome can be surgical or non-surgical, depending on your preference. The non-surgical solution is performed by immobilizing the wrist with a splint along with physical therapy and pain medication. On the other hand, the surgical solution results in cutting open the tendon sheaths to reduce friction between them and to give it space to heal.
3. Trigger finger
A trigger finger occurs when a person’s finger becomes locked. A distinct click or pop signifies this with every bend or movement. It’s a condition that commonly occurs to the ring finger and thumb. It’s a sign of inflammation around the fingers’ tendons, leading to the creation of small lumps that prevent fluid motion. That results in the clicking sound and pain emanating from the fingers’ joints.
Similar to the texting thumb, attaching a splint and frequent stretches and medication can help manage a diagnosis of a trigger finger. A person can also be injected with steroids to reduce the inflammation of the lump. If these methods don’t work, however, a surgical option of cutting the affected pulley of the tendons can be done to promote better finger movement.
Besides the injuries listed above, your body may be more prone to joint problems, such as arthritis and tendonitis, as you get older. The key to avoiding these physical complications is by making sure that you receive a decent amount of rest to prevent overstressing your hands and wrists.
Although prevention is the best way to avoid hand and wrist injuries, you should learn where to receive reliable treatments in case you’re already facing a physical condition.
If you require a hand doctor in Jacksonville to diagnose and treat your injuries, our trained physicians are ready to give your hand a look. Get in touch with us today to receive expert diagnosis and professional care for your injuries.