Do you often experience shooting pain in your wrist and hands when you try to type, drive, chop fruit, write your shopping list or play with your dog? Do your fingers sometimes go numb and tingle, making it hard to get a firm grip when you try to lift a grocery bag or briefcase? Does it hurt to bend your elbow? Do sharp wrist pains wake you up at night? If you’re losing sleep and having a hard time with daily tasks, get the relief by scheduling a free consult with our physical therapy team today. Your physical therapist can help you get natural, drug-free pain relief for most hand, wrist and elbow pains. To learn more about the potential causes of hand, wrist and elbow pain, continue reading below:
What is Elbow, Hand and Wrist Pain?
Elbow, wrist or hand pain can take several forms: from a dull, throbbing ache that immobilizes your elbow, to sharp, shooting pains in your wrist, to pins, needles and numbness in your hand and fingers. These structures are complex and intricate, and pain can happen due to a sudden injury, or from repetitive, un-ergonomic motions that gradually cause inflammation in joints and soft tissues, leading to pinched nerves. You can get a proper diagnosis from your physical therapist to pinpoint the reason behind your pain, so an individualized physical therapy treatment plan can help you get pain-free function back in your hands.
What Causes Hand, Wrist and Elbow Pain?
The following are some of the most common causes and symptoms of hand, wrist and elbow pain. If these symptoms sound familiar, visit with your physical therapist soon to get effective, lasting pain relief treatment:
- Arthritis—Your hands each have a host of joints in the fingers, not to mention the wrist and the elbow. If pain and stiffness afflict these joints, your physical therapist can teach you hand exercises to help improve motion and reduce pain.
- Bursitis—Pain and swelling in the small, fluid-filled bursa that cushion your joints and tendons is often caused by overuse and poor ergonomics. Your physical therapist can show you better ways of working to avoid overuse injuries.
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome—Swollen tendons, muscles, and other tissues pinch the median nerve inside of the bony carpal tunnel in the wrist. Symptoms include shooting pain in the wrist and hand, sometimes up to the elbow; numbness, tingling, and hand weakness are also common.
- Cubital Tunnel Syndrome—Soft tissue inflammation in the elbow’s cubital tunnel pinches the ulnar nerve, causing pain, weakness, numbness and tingling from the elbow down to the hand.
- Strains and Sprains—Sports, work and home injuries, or overuse from poor ergonomic movement, can injure your hand, wrist and elbow muscles, tendons and ligaments.
These are some of the most common causes of hand, wrist and elbow injury and pain, but there are others. A visit with your physical therapist can help you determine what the underlying problem is, so you can start a pain relief treatment regimen.
How Can Physical Therapy Relieve Elbow, Hand and Wrist Pain?
In many cases, physical therapy provides a safe, effective, non-surgical treatment option for elbow, hand and wrist pain. If surgery is needed, physical therapy can also improve surgery preparation and accelerate post-surgical recovery time.
Your physical therapist will fully examine your hand, wrist, and elbow and review your medical records. With a full understanding of your condition, your physical therapist can then design a physical therapy plan, complete with anti-inflammatory treatments, exercises, stretches and ergonomic adaptations designed to speed your recovery, improve strength and range of motion, and help you resume a normal activity level without pain, or the need for painkillers. Your physical therapist will also advise you on activities and movements to avoid to help you prevent future injury.
Your Physical Therapist Can Help with Elbow, Hand and Wrist Pain
Don’t let hand, wrist and elbow pain hamper your life any longer: contact our physical therapy team at Casper, WY and Glenrock, WY centers to schedule a free consult and get back to your active, pain-free lifestyle sooner.