It's been several days you're noticing something with your hands. After several hours of typing on your keyboard and using your mouse, you need to pause for some moments because you can feel excruciating pain in your wrist. The pain seemed to vanish after taking a break in the past days, but now the pain persists, and numbness also occurs. It's time for you to take a closer look because some serious health conditions can cause wrist pain. Indeed, you do not want that this wrist pain worsens. You need to find relief or the ways to prevent it.
According to Medicine.net, wrist pain can be caused by injuries and diseases, with related symptoms including finger pain, hand pain, and swollen joints.
"Wrist pain can be caused by disease or injury affecting any aspect of the wrist joint, including the bones, ligaments, and connective tissue surrounding the area."
Other causes of wrist pains including but are not limited to the bone tumour, bacterial infection, dermatitis, soft tissue tumour, and Kienböck's Disease (a condition wherein the lunate bone, one of eight small bones in the wrist, dies due to the lack of its blood supply.)
Symptoms of Wrist Pain
There are various symptoms related to wrist pain. Medical News Today mentioned the following on one of its published articles:
"Wrist pain symptoms can vary depending on the cause. Some people may have pain that they describe as achy or dull; others may have sharp pain. The location of the pain can also vary. In addition to pain, other symptoms may develop. Symptoms of an injury, such as a wrist sprain, can include swelling and bruising. Numbness, tingling, and hand weakness might also occur when pain is due to carpal tunnel syndrome."
The article also added that some individuals might develop other signs and symptoms, including trouble gripping objects, stiffness, and hearing a clicking sound when moving the wrist.
Common Types and Reasons for Wrist Pains
Wrist pains are identified based on the conditions that cause it. Below are some of the common causes of wrist pain:
#1 Wrist tendonitis
This condition usually occurs when the tendons of the wrist create small tears or become inflamed and irritated. Wrist tendonitis commonly occurs due to repetitive movement using the wrist.
#2 Repetitive motion syndrome
When a person's work requires repeating the task over and over again, developing repetitive motion syndrome will be of high risk. Activities like knitting, typing, and other similar jobs can overwork the joints, causing them to swell and pressure the nerves. This can affect various joints in the body, as well as the wrist.
# Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Carpal tunnel syndrome is one of the most common conditions that develop when pressure is put on the median nerve. Symptoms may include tingling, pain, weakness in the arm and hand, and numbness. Individuals who have diabetes and are obese are more prone to develop Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. This is often experienced by people whose work is repetitive in nature, such as typing, lifting, and using equipment that produces vibration.
# Wrist sprain
A wrist sprain is often caused when the wrist is bent backwards or when it hits the ground. Such movements can overstretch the ligament and lead to pain and discomfort.
# Osteoarthritis in the wrist
Osteoarthritis in the wrist leads to the inflammation of the joints. It happens when the cartilage covering the bones wears away. Osteoarthritis can affect various types of joints and the wrist, as well. Individuals who are middle age or even older are more at risk to experience osteoarthritis in the wrist.
# Ganglion cyst
This type of cysts are fluid-filled soft tissue cysts usually develop on the wrist opposite the palm, but rather develop on the wrist's palmar area. It is observed that smaller cysts tend to be more painful than large cysts.
# Triangular fibrocartilage complex injury
The triangular fibrocartilage can be found on the pinky side of the wrist. It serves as a cushion and acts as a support for the small bones. The cartilage can tear over time or wear because of an injury.
# De Quervain's disease
When a person has De Quervain's disease, the tendons and their coverings on the wrist's thumb area become swollen and inflamed. The primary cause of this disease is unknown; however, it is often related to an injury to the area or overusing them. Some signs and symptoms include swelling, a grating feeling on the wrist, and weakness in the thumb, forearm, and wrist.
# Rheumatoid arthritis
Another common condition is rheumatoid arthritis. It is an autoimmune disease wherein the body's immune system tears healthy tissues. This results in wrist pain when the joints are being affected.
# Wrist bursitis
Bursa is described as small sacs filled with fluids that aid cushion joints. When these sacs become inflamed, the condition is referred to as bursitis. Bursitis can develop in various parts of the body, including the wrists. The common signs of this condition include redness, inflammation, swelling, and tenderness on the wrist's tendons.
Who are Commonly at Risk of Wrist Pain?
Anyone can experience wrist pain. It can happen to people who are living both an active and sedentary lifestyle. However, individuals who are engaged in the following activities are more at risk of developing wrist pain:
- People whose jobs are repetitive
- Individuals who are active in sports participation
- Other health conditions and diseases (include obesity, diabetes, pregnancy, gout, and arthritis)
Healthline.com shared in one of its articles a list of exercises that can help relieve aching wrists. Here are some of them:
- Wrist flexes and extensions
- Wrist supination and pronation
- Wrist deviation
For working individuals, it is also important to use the right materials. For instance, office workers should consider using ergonomic equipment and accessories. An ergonomic vertical mouse can help prevent Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and Repetitive Strain Injuries.
It is also essential to take breaks at work to not overuse your hands and wrists. Always apply work ergonomics to ensure safety and comfort while at work.
A delay in getting treatment for wrist pain due to an injury can make the condition worse. Make sure to get emergency care for that. However, there are instances when wrist pain has no obvious damage. It's best to see a doctor when you are experiencing tingling, numbness, and pain even if you're not using your hands.