By Terry Smith
If your work requires you to spend eight or more hours a day in front of a computer, then carpal tunnel syndrome is a very real concern. At the same time, office workers are not the only people who have to worry about developing this condition. Any occupation which involves repetitive hand or wrist motion can place you at risk, as can hobbies like knitting. Here are some things you can do to prevent this problem.
Exercise – Fortunately, there are several different things that you can do to help prevent the development of carpal tunnel syndrome. One is to maintain a healthy weight and exercise regularly – studies have linked obesity to a higher risk of developing the condition. Research conducted at the University of Kentucky, the University of Gaziosmanpasa in Istanbul and other universities worldwide have confirmed this correlation.
Smoking – You can also cut down on smoking to reduce your risk. Smoking decreases circulation, especially in the extremities and this is also a risk factor when combined with repetitive wrist and hand motions. If you smoke, you should be very careful when performing these kinds of tasks; but again, it’s better to think about giving it up entirely.
Ergonomically correct environment – Get a chair with proper support and correctly position items on your desk, such as the monitor, keyboard and even your mouse. Take the time to ensure that you are keeping proper body mechanics at all time as this will help you to offset the chance of experiencing carpal tunnel. In many cases this simply means sitting up straight and keeping your elbows close to your body.
If you’re looking for a way to offset the risk of an occupation which necessarily involves repetitive hand and wrist motions, it may be a good idea to invest in office furniture equipment which helps to encourage better posture. You can find chairs, desks, keyboards and other items which are designed with this goal in mind.
Take a Break – One of the most important techniques for preventing this condition is to take short breaks at regular intervals throughout your day. Get up from your desk, take a little walk around and do some hand and wrist stretches before you sit back down at your work station. This breaks up your day and actually helps you stay alert and focused on your work as well as reducing your risk of hand or wrist injury.
Carpal tunnel syndrome is painful and can be debilitating, but it’s also fairly easy to prevent. If your occupation or hobbies place you at an elevated risk for repetitive motion injuries, then it’s important to consider your risks and take action to minimize them. A little prevention goes a long way – and since it could save you from having to have surgery later on, it’s well worth working to avoid suffering from this type of injury.
Some carpal tunnel information came from SportsMED.Thank you to SportsMED of Alabama for their knowledge on sports medicine and surgery.
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Diseases and Conditions |
Tags: carpal tunnel, Conditions, Diseases and Conditions, hand pain, health, Medicine, surgery
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