Who Gets Wrist Pain?
Wrist pain & discomfort is an increasingly common workplace and at home complaint. In today’s work environment there are more and more computer related jobs which can be a leading cause of wrist pain & inflammation. The wrist pain can be caused with a sudden onset from a fracture after a fall or trauma. Wrist pain can also be caused from a repetitive stress injury (such as with typing on a keyboard) leading to arthritis or carpal tunnel syndrome.
If your pain has been going on for a long time, diagnosing the exact cause is something your therapist at Kauai Therapy & Wellness can help you with your wrist pain. We get to the root of the problem with one of our wrist and hand specialists. This means you will get the proper treatment to get you better faster.
Wrist Pain Symptoms
Wrist pain symptoms can differ. For instance, Osteoarthritis pain is usually referred to as “dull achy pain”. Osteoarthritis pain is usually thought of as a chronic painful condition. Tendinitis may be a “sharp or knife-like pain”. Wrist tendinitis is usually thought of as an acute pain. Paresthesia is a fancy word which refers to tickling, prickling, tingling, burning or “pins-and-needles” type of sensation. Wrist pain and paresthesia may indicate nerve involvement, which is often present with carpal tunnel syndrome. With carpal tunnel syndrome, irritation of the median nerve in the carpal tunnel can cause paresthesia in the thumb, index and middle fingers.
The exact location and type of wrist pain will help your therapist reach an accurate diagnosis. Make sure you are prepared to give your therapist at Kauai Therapy & Wellness an accurate history of your wrist pain. What fingers does it effect? When do you get the pain? What makes it get better? Is it a dull achy pain or a sharp stabbing pain? This will allow your physical therapist to design a treatment plan to help you on a fast and effective road to recovery. We will soon discuss: 4 Easy Tips to Prevent Wrist Pain but for now, let’s look at some common causes of wrist pain.
Two major causes of wrist pain:
Sudden impacts: Falls are the most common cause of injury, especially falling with your hand stretched out straight in front of you. This is typically referred to in the medical community as a “FOOSA”. This is the abbreviation for Fall On Out Stretched Arm. This can cause sprains, strains and even fractures. To find out more about wrist pain after a fall, read this: Wrist Injury After a Fall
Repetitive stress: Any activity that requires repetitive wrist motion such as typing or “keyboarding”, hitting a tennis ball, golf ball, bowling, painting, cooking, gripping weights at the gym or lawn/garden care. These are just a few of the many common causes of wrist pain. These every day common activities can also inflame the wrist tissue.
I have wrist pain, now what……
First time hurting your wrist? Then you may want to try applying ice for approximately 20 minutes. Make sure to use adequate padding such as a folded towel between the ice and your skin. Taking some over-the-counter medicine for pain and inflammation may also be indicated but be sure to follow the instructions carefully. If the pain is severe, an over-the-counter wrist brace to reduce abnormal stress of the wrist joint is also a good idea. You can typically find these at your big box stores or your local pharmacy. We also have them in stock a Kauai Therapy & Wellness and will be happy to fit you for an appropriate wrist brace (& appropriate size). Let one of our experienced staff members at Kauai Therapy & Wellness help you (most insurance plans will pay for these).
Is this a re-injury? Then you may want to ice it for approximately 20 minutes & avoid any movements or activity which may make it worse. NO PAIN NO GAIN is NOT a rule to follow in this case. If you had occupational therapy or physical therapy on Kauai in the past at a different Physical Therapy clinic (for the same condition), call us today to get a fresh set of eyes on your problem and let us get to the root of your wrist pain to eliminate it forever.
When your pain persist for up to 48 hours, you may need to schedule therapy. When your treatment for wrist pain is left untreated, it can lead to diminished healing. Delayed treatment of wrist pain can leave you with less flexibility in the wrist and fingers. It can also lead to weakness which can contribute to difficulty with everyday activity.
4 Tips to Prevent Wrist Pain
You can’t stop unforeseen injuries from happening. But by reading below about 4 easy steps to prevent wrist pain, you will reduce your risk of injury (or re-injury) in the wrist:
Remember to use protective wrist guards for high risk activities: Wear wrist guards for high-risk activities such as football, rollerblading or any activity in which a FOOSA (fall on outstretched arm) may occur.
- Learn to prevent falls. A forward fall onto an outstretched arm or hand is the cause of most wrist fractures, strains & sprains. Minimize fall risk by wearing well-fitted shoes. Make pathways clear at home and minimize clutter in pathways. Have a well lit home with lamps and lighting. Installing grab bars in your bathroom may be a good idea as bathrooms and the kitchen are the 2 most common areas in the home for falls to occur. Check out how to prevent a fall at home for more ideas on how to minimize falls at home.
- Building density & strength of your bones: It is important to get adequate nutrients and vitamins in our daily intake of food. Getting appropriate calcium (at least 1,500 mgs/day day for adults) & adequate amounts of vitamin D is very important to build strong and dense bones. Talk to you doctor and ask for advice on which supplement is best for you. Your Doctor can perform a simple blood test to check your individual Calcium & Vitamin D levels.
- Ergonomics. Retail now offers many products to assist with the improvement of your workstation setup in your work office or home office. Specially designed keypads & keyboards will minimize the stress from your wrists when you’re keyboarding & typing. It is also very important that the height of your chair and the position of the computer monitor relative to your head, neck, & shoulders will affect the angle of your wrist and entire upper body.
- Strengthening upper body: By building strength in the muscles of the arms, shoulders, and upper back, you can help prevent poor form when typing, pushing, bearing weight in the hands (like a pushup or yoga stretches), or getting out of a chair. Stronger shoulders, back, and arms will take the pressure out of the wrist joint. As always, talk to your doctor before starting an exercise routine. A simple way to start building arm strength is to take a water bottle or can of food in each hand when going on your daily walk and using the weight resistance to bicep curl as you walk. For other easy and helpful tips, talk to one of our Physical Therapists or Certified Personal Trainers here at Back In Motion to design a safe and manageable strengthening routine.
Physical Therapy in Hawaii is now direct access meaning in most cases NO DOCTOR’S PRESCRIPTION IS REQUIRED. Most of our new clients are coming to Kauai Therapy & Wellness through the coconut wireless: through word of mouth referrals. Our current clients are our #1 method for getting new clients to walk through our door. We take pride in getting you better quicker. Our goal is for our clients to say: The team at Kauai Therapy & Wellness got me better in only 3 visits and did what the other outpatient physical therapy clinics couldn’t get done after 12 (or more) visits!