With the amount of typing most people do at work, it’s not a surprise that many experience wrist and hand injuries and fatigue. While using the keyboard and mouse are not particularly stressful activities, using them incorrectly over time can cause pain and damage. In this article, we discuss why you experience wrist pain from typing, how to relieve it, and the tips and tools you can use to prevent it.
Why Wrists Hurt From Typing
Wrist pain is mainly caused by incorrect hand positioning and posture during typing. While many are taught how to properly use the computer, not all workstations are ergonomically set up to make this happen, especially for those who are working remotely. In addition, inattention and fatigue from hours of repetitive work can sometimes prompt bad typing habits to creep back in.
If you’re working in an unideal computer setup, expect to start feeling back pain, shoulder pain, and arm stiffness over time. This will eventually radiate to the shoulders, arms, wrists, and hands. When your fingers and wrists start to hurt from typing, you should consult a physician right away.
How to Relieve Wrist Pain From Typing
If you’re experiencing wrist pain, your doctor might prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs or pain relievers so you can continue performing your daily activities. Healthcare professionals recommend that you rest your wrists for a certain amount of time to allow them to heal before you start typing again. Beyond seeing the doctor (most important!), here are other tips on relieving wrist pain:
Going cold turkey on computer use does not solve the problem. The real ticket is body mechanics; that is, ensuring that your elbow is bent at a 90-degree angle, your wrists are resting on the table or wrist pad, and that you are seated with your back straight. Correcting your posture now can provide immediate relief from wrist pain.
Apply cold or warm compress on the pain site several times until the discomfort subsides. Wrist pain is mostly associated with muscle or joint inflammation, which can be addressed by applying ice or heat, whichever works for you.
You can use a wrist splint to immobilize your wrist and enable it to heal. When this happens, you will need to reduce your typing time or take a full break from it entirely so you can recover.
If the pain becomes unbearable or if you aren’t able to move your hand, see a doctor or occupational therapist right way. Your physician can prescribe the right pain medications and recommend physical therapy for relief and recovery when your wrists hurt from typing.
5 Ways to Prevent Wrist Pain and Injury
As the cliche goes, “prevention is better than cure.” You can deal with your wrist pain with the tips given above or choose not to experience the pain at all through preventive techniques. We list five tips that ensure you won’t have to deal with wrist pain from typing.
1. Maintain proper posture.
Just as the right posture can relieve wrist pain, it also can prevent the problem from even happening in the first place. By adopting the right posture while using the computer at all times, you protect not just your wrists but your entire body from having to suffer through typing-related pain.
2. Use ergonomic tools.
There are keyboards, keypads, tables, and office chairs that are ergonomically designed. If the majority of your workday involves typing, it makes sense to invest in ergonomic accessories to ensure your safety and comfort.
3. Keep your wrists in shape.
Keep your hands and wrists in optimal shape by including them in your targeted workouts. Great exercise routines for the wrists include simple wrist stretches and exercises using resistance bands. Incorporating these into your usual workout can help a lot in ensuring that your hands and wrists are strong and ready to work.
4. Take frequent micro-breaks.
When your entire day involves just being at the computer and typing, rewarding yourself with quick 10 to 30-minute breaks is very helpful in keeping your hands and wrists healthy and capable.
5. Use efficient typing software.
Text prediction software can reduce your typing activity by forecasting your words depending on your typing patterns. Lightkey is one such software that c