Incurring injuries to your hand or wrists is relatively common, especially since people use it every day regardless of their line of work. For this reason, hand fractures can be extremely dangerous to have, whether it came from experiencing high force impact or gradual weakening due to disease. This means that people who engage in physically strenuous activities and people working office jobs are equally at risk of getting hand fractures.
How do Hand Fractures Occur?
Your hand can get fractured in numerous ways, but the most common cause occurs during a fall. Since your brain will instinctively try to halt your motion from heavy impact, you will naturally put your hand out to brace for impact. Because of this, your hands can suffer from the accumulated force of landing improperly. Alternatively, you could instinctively put out your arms to protect your face or other parts of your body from an incoming object.
Hand fractures occur more frequently among older adults, even if children are more vulnerable to falls and accidents due to carelessness. This is because a growing person’s body has better recovery mechanisms, while adults tend to have more brittle bones due to natural loss of bone mass as they age. Unfortunately, even athletes and physically active individuals with well-trained bodies can also suffer from hand fracture injuries.
What are the Symptoms of Hand Fractures?
Although the fractures can recover normally, there’s a risk of the bones recovering incorrectly or out of alignment. This can lead to other complications that will spread from the wrist through the forearm. Afterward, the misaligned bone can lead to having a limited range of movement, arthritis, or permanent disfigurement. For these reasons, it’s important never to underestimate hand fractures.
If you want to avoid incurring these the more severe conditions above, you need to be mindful of these symptoms:
- Bruising and swelling
- Deformity from the joint leading to the finger
- Numbness or stiffness
- Inability to move the full hand, wrist, or fingers,
- Pain when squeezing or gripping an object
If you’ve determined that you have any of the symptoms above, you need to seek treatment immediately. Although your body can naturally heal itself over time, it’s important to receive a professional opinion from a physician to evaluate the scope of your injury. Doing so will prevent any permanent disfigurement that can occur and reduce the risk of experiencing fracture again in the future.
How are Hand Fractures and Hand Sprains Different?
Unless you have professional medical training, it can be difficult to identify a hand fracture from a hand sprain. However, the key difference between the two is the source of the injury. A hand sprain’s symptoms come from a torn or stretched ligament. In contrast, fractures result from damage due to partial breaks, which can be impacted, spiral, or stress-induced. Since a hand can be dislocated and fractured simultaneously, it’s important to receive a professional diagnosis.
Since hand and wrist injuries can be a severe inconvenience to your daily routines, it’s best to recover as soon as possible. This is why receiving immediate medical care is necessary to ensure that your hand fracture isn’t just a symptom of a greater underlying condition. For this reason, you need to consult with specialists to receive a professional diagnosis and undergo proper treatment.
At North Florida Hand & Wrist, our specialists can get to the root of your injury while giving you expert treatment and care. If you need a reliable wrist doctor in Jacksonville, FL, to confirm your condition, schedule an appointment with us today!