Many of us use computers in our day-to-day lives. Given how much time we spend on them, both professionally and casually, it's no surprise that hand and wrist pain is commonplace. If you're not careful, carpal tunnel or tendonitis could come calling and make your life difficult.
If you're looking to form good habits early and prevent such a thing from happening, you've come to the right place. Read on to find out what you can do to prevent or diminish wrist pain.
To start--relax! You may not always realize it, but your body carries a lot of tension. Take a moment to check yourself. Breathe deeply. Relax your shoulders, unclench your jaw, and soften your brow.
Now apply that release of tension to your work station. Use a softer touch when typing on your keyboard. Don't grip your mouse so tightly in your hand. Small adjustments such as this can make a big difference in the long run.
Aim for perfect posture. Sit tall with your back against your chair, shoulders back, looking straight ahead. Poor posture can affect not just your back, but your entire body. Slouching can crunch your vertebrae together, put strain on your nerves, and send shockwaves of pain all the way down to your wrists. If you have trouble remembering to sit up straight, set little reminders on your phone to gently nudge you into the correct position.
Take breaks to stretch. Stretching your hands can be just as important as stretching your legs, especially if your hands have been poised over a keyboard all day long, or wielding a pen.
Try different techniques to keep your hands in good shape. Slowly roll your wrists in circular motions. Stretch your fingers as far as you can, then clench your hand into a fist, and repeat. Press each of your fingers against your thumb. Then, give your hands a nice massage--they've been working hard!
Keep your wrist in a neutral position. When working for long periods of time, keep your wrist straight and avoid bending it. This means having your desk and chair at a height that is comfortable for you. If you're finding this difficult, or maybe you can't help but bend your wrist into odd positions while sleeping at night, you can always wear a brace to help keep it straightened.
Embrace ergonomics! The definition for ergonomic is "designed for efficiency and comfort in the working environment." There's a wide array of ergonomic, adjustable keyboards on the market. With minor adjustments to keyboard shape and a place to rest your hands, an ergonomic keyboard can go a long way to prevent wrist pain.
Wrist supports are also a huge lifesaver! There are options for both keyboard rests or smaller supports to put in front of your mouse. If you want to add some pizzazz to your office, there are fun options like this galactic pig or a delicious baguette.
As always, make sure to read the reviews and find the best option for you!
Keep clear of the cold. If you feel pain creeping in, your best bet is to apply heat. Cold exacerbates pain and stiffness. If your office is always cold or your desk is stuck under a fan, fingerless gloves might be a wise (and stylish) decision.
Try to keep all of this in mind as you go about your day. And if you ever feel hand or wrist pain starting to set in, it's never too late to start applying these tips!
Did we miss anything? Let us know in the comments!