Oh, how we love our smartphones. With a wealth of information available at the touch of a screen and friends, family, and colleagues a quick text, email, or phone call away, it’s like having the world in the palm of your hand. You wouldn’t expect something so wonderful to cause you pain, which just adds to the indignity of smartphone thumb.
Smartphone thumb may sound silly, but the pain that results from overuse can be text stopping. Smartphone thumb is a repetitive stress injury defined by pain or discomfort in the wrist and thumb when bending either one toward the pinkie finger. You may also experience a dull ache in the base of your thumb or pain and snapping in your thumb when you bend and straighten it.
So what exactly causes that pain? Smartphone thumb comes from typing on a little keyboard with your thumbs while holding your hands in an awkward position, answering the emails and scrolling through your music list or checking Facebook timeline . But we depend so much on these amazing gadgets that we’ll put up with a lot of pain before even thinking about setting them aside.
Tips for Avoiding Hand Injuries:
- Don't push down so hard. That puts pressure on the nerve.
- Use the nail of your thumb to scroll instead of the thumb itself.
- Write short text messages, and don't write so many at one time. After 15 or 20 minutes, get up and do something different.
- Alternate fingers. The less you move your thumb, the better. Share the work among your fingers; don't let the thumb do it all.
- Adopt a neutral grip that keeps the wrist as straight as possible, because bending the wrist can add to the strain.
- Take a break! They're called repetitive motion injuries because they result from performing the same task over and over. Allow your hands to rest, or at least switch activities frequently.
- Switch hands frequently. That way you will be distributing the stress over two hands.
- Sit up straight. You are more likely to strain your elbows and wrists when you lean or slouch while operating a handheld device.
Orthocure Clinics also recommends stretching exercises that may help stave off repetitive motion injuries or alleviate early symptoms. Hold each stretch for 10 seconds and repeat each eight times.
- Fold your hands together and turn your palms away from your body as you extend your arms forward. You should feel a gentle stretch all the way from your shoulders to your fingers.
- Fold your hands together and turn your palms away from your body, but this time extend your arms over your head. You should feel the stretch in your upper torso and from your shoulders to your hands.
- Extend an arm in front of you, making sure the elbow is completely straight. With your palm down, take the opposite hand and bend the hand on the outstretched arm down toward the floor. Then turn the palm up and stretch the hand up toward your body. This stretches the forearm and wrist muscles.
- Open the hands and spread the fingers as far as possible.
Orthocure Clinics wishes you a healthy lifestyle and as they say, always keep your thumbs up!