Carpal Tunnel Prevention Tips during the Pandemic

During this unprecedented time, as many of us are working from home and spending more of our time on our computers and phones, we need to be aware of common overuse injuries and aim to reduce the risk of carpal tunnel syndrome.

Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by compression of a nerve in the wrist. When compressed, the nerve produces feelings of tingling, numbness, and weakness. It’s commonly associated with repetitive hand and wrist movements.

Here are some easy steps that you can take to reduce your risk:

  1. Pay attention to your posture.

Improve your posture and body mechanics at your workstation. Sit up straight and avoid slouching.

  1. Be mindful of your hands and wrists.

Pay attention to your use of the computer monitor, chair, keyboard, and mouse, or other equipment and tools. Maintain a neutral position with your elbows close to your sides.

  1. Step away every now and then.

Take a 10-15 minute break every hour from your work to bend or stretch your entire body.

  1. Stretch.

Stretch your hands and wrists often, every 20 to 60 minutes. An easy stretch is: make a fist, release your fingers, and fan them out. Stretch your fingers as far as you can. Repeat 5-10 times

  1. Take breaks.

Alternate typing and cell phone usage with other activities that allow your hands and wrists to rest.

  1. Schedule a virtual visit.

If you develop pain, we are now able to thoroughly evaluate you through a virtual visit by video. There is no reason to delay treatment, especially with the uncertainty of how long restrictions will continue. If necessary, imaging studies can be ordered, medication prescribed, and physical therapy ordered, just like an in-person visit. Many physical therapy offices are also performing telemedicine treatment, which can be very effective. Surgery can also be scheduled for certain urgent conditions. 

We hope that you and your family stay safe and healthy during these challenging times. Remember that we are here to care for you when needed! To learn more about our virtual visits or to schedule an appointment, please click here.

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