Our wrists are made up of 8 carpal bones and a intricate web of nerves and ligaments. These 8 bones support an area called the carpal tunnel. This tunnel contains tendons and the median nerve.
One of the most common sites of injury is the wrist. The wrists are used in a variety of different sports such as badminton, tennis, boxing and are also extensively used when we type and in certain occupations. This repetitive motion of certain activities makes some people more susceptible to wrist pain.
The majority of falls also result in wrist pain as we naturally outstretch our hands to cushion our fall.
A wrist sprain is stretching or tearing of the ligaments that support the wrist. Ligaments are strong bands of tissue that connect bones to each other. This often occurs due to a fall on an outstretched hand which causes ligaments to stretch which can be very painful. Pain will be present around the wrist and there may be some redness and bruising. The patient will complain of limited range of movement.
A wrist sprain can be classed in three different grades:
Rehabilation exercises and wrist braces will help speed up recovery and prevent further injury.You may need to wear a brace to immobilize your wrist. If you play sports, you may need to wear a wrist brace or tape your wrist when you return to play.
Arthritis of the hand and wrist occurs in one of two major forms: inflammatory arthritis, including conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, and the more common form of degenerative arthritis is known as osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis is the main form of arthritis and is known as the “wear and tear” disorder. It can affect any joint. The wrist is especially susceptible due to the tremendous amounts of pressure that is placed during everyday activities. Osteoarthritis causes the cartilage to erode and then causes the bone ends to rub against each other which results in stiffness and aching of the joints.
Rheumatoid Arthritis is a systemic disease, which affects the whole body. In rheumatoid arthritis, the joint lining (synovium), normally smooth and shiny, becomes inflamed, painful and swollen. Rheumatoid arthritis can affect all the joints and muscles in the wrist. It affects more women then men and can be inherited. The insides of the joints become swollen and stiff. It affects the wrist by causing stiffness, swelling, and the loss of motion. One common symptom of rheumatoid arthritis of the wrist is diminished grip strength. The fingers of the hand are able to move because of the connection of tendons within them to the muscles of the forearm.
There is another form of arthritis that you should be aware of called infectious arthritis. Infectious arthritis (septic arthritis) is infection in the fluid and tissues of a joint usually caused by bacteria, but sometimes caused by viruses or fungi. The patient will have swelling of the wrist accompanied by heat. He or she will also have fever and touching the wrist will cause extreme pain. In such as case visit your local emergency department as soon as possible. Touching the wrist will cause Extreme pain.
Osteoarthritis of Wrist
Rheumatoid Arthritis of wrist
Wrist strengthening exercises will help together with heat pads and wrist supports to reduce pain.
Carpal tunnel syndrome affects about 1 in 100 people at some point in their life. Men and women of any age can develop it, but it is most common in women in their 30s, 40s and 50s.
Sometimes carpal tunnel syndrome is triggered by a person’s occupation, and can lead to the person being unable to work. Most cases of carpal tunnel syndrome can be prevented by stopping or reducing the activity that stresses the fingers, hand, or wrist, or by changing the way in which activities are done.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a condition where there is excessive pressure on the median nerve. This can be caused by swelling in the carpal tunnel and/or thickening of the transverse carpal ligament, which forms the roof of the carpal tunnel.
Pinching or compression of this nerve by the transverse carpal ligament sets into motion a progressively crippling disorder which eventually results in wrist pain, numbness and tingling in the hand, pain consisting of a “pins and needles” feeling at night, weakness in grip and a feeling of in coordination.
Patients with carpal tunnel syndrome initially feel numbness and tingling of the hand in the distribution of the median nerve (the thumb, index, middle, and part of the fourth fingers). These sensations are often more pronounced at night and can awaken patients from sleep. The reason symptoms are worse at night may be related to the flexed-wrist sleeping position and/or fluid accumulating around the wrist and hand while lying flat. Carpal tunnel syndrome may be a temporary condition that completely resolves or it can persist and progress.
As the disease progresses, patients can develop a burning sensation, cramping and weakness of the hand. Decreased grip strength can lead to frequent dropping of objects from the hand. Occasionally, sharp shooting pains can be felt in the forearm. Chronic carpal tunnel syndrome can also lead to wasting (atrophy) of the hand muscles, particularly those near the base of the thumb in the palm of the hand.
Carpal tunnel syndrome treatment usually begins conservatively, and moves to more aggressive and invasive techniques if the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome persist.
The initial carpal tunnel syndrome treatment steps include some medications and splints.
Doctor at A+ clinic may ask you to rest your wrist or change how you use your hand. Doctor may also ask you to wear a splint on your wrist. The splint keeps your wrist from moving but lets your hand do most of what it normally does. A splint can help ease the pain of carpal tunnel syndrome, especially at night.
Putting ice on your wrist, massaging the area and doing stretching exercises may help too.
Cotisone injecions provide temporary relief as is it injected directly into the affectd area to decrease inflammation around the nerve.
Surgical treatments are available and effective in the treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome. The most common procedure is the carpal tunnel release. A carpal tunnel release involves making an incision in the fibrous sheath around the carpal tunnel. By releasing tension in the carpal tunnel, the pressure is removed from the nerve.
Tips for relieving carpal tunnel syndrome
Wrist Tendonitis (DeQuervains Tendonitis) can be defined as an irritation and swelling of the sheath or tunnel which surrounds the tendons of the thumb. Typically the pain will be present at the front of the wrist. Pain will be initiated when grasping an object or pinching the fingers, Some patients present with a lump in the wrist directly above the carpal tunnel. This indicates that the condition has advanced as there may also be a balloon of joint fluid formed in that area. Localized swelling may be present and making a fist or bending the wrist will initiate pain.
The exercises above will help to strengthen the wrist. Please note that these should only be attempted when the initial tendonitis has subsided and you wish to strengthen the wrist. If any pain is initiated from these exercises then you should immediately cease the exercises. Wrist supports will also help to speed up recovery and prevent further injury.
The Ultimate Hand Helper was desinged to be comfortable, effective and versatile. The ultimate hand helper helps to strengthen the hand and wrist muscles.