With everyone using computers today — coupled with busy work schedules — it’s not surprising people suffer from repetitive-use injuries from typing too much. Though carpal tunnel has never been proven to be associated with typing, tendinitis or bursitis can be caused and can cause carpal tunnel-like symptoms. If you’re experiencing soreness, a burning sensation, or numbness when typing, here are some ways you can assuage your symptoms.
Ask your boss for a couple vacation days to rest your wrist(s) if your symptoms get worse. Rest is almost always the first course of action for any repetitive-stress injury. It stops the motion that causes the irritation and gives your tendons and ligaments time to heal. Refrain from using smartphones and computer mice for a few days.
Take an anti-inflammatory medication like ibuprofen or naproxen, which reduces swelling and inflammation. In most cases, you can take these over-the-counter medications several times per day. But read the label for the maximum number of pills you can take in a 24-hour period.
Ice and Heat
Ice is usually recommended for most inflammatory conditions during the first 72 hours. Ice reduces swelling by limiting the flow of blood and lymphatic fluid to the injured area. It also helps to elevate your injured wrist when icing it to limit blood flow. Apply ice for 15 or 20 minutes at a time. After the swelling subsides, use heat to promote the flow of blood along with its healing properties.
Use a Wrist Brace
Braces stabilize your wrist and muscles, limiting the movements that cause soreness and inflammation and allowing them to heal without being exerted. The wrist brace fits around your hand and forearm to ensure support to the injured area. You can purchase wrist braces at most discount or drug stores.
Another way to foster healing and prevent repetitive-use injuries is to avoid resting your hand on a pad when typing. It puts undue stress on your muscles and ligaments. Also, keep your wrists and hands in straight alignment when typing and take periodic breaks from long typing sessions. You can also stretch your wrist and forearm muscles to build strength and loosen the tension. If you think you might need further treatment, call a family medical clinic. They have medical professionals who can offer advice or arrange an appointment for you.
Treatments for repetitive-use injuries from typing should be used in conjunction with one another. And in most cases, if you start treatments right away, the injury will heal on its own.