Wrist tendinitis, medically known as tenosynovitis, is the inflammation of the flexor and extensor tendons surrounding the joint. Tendinitis is more common in people over 40. It often occurs where the tendons come in contact with bony protuberances. Tendinitis can be painful. One must take a systematic approach to curing it.
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Identifying The Cause
The first step in curing tendinitis is to find out what is causing it. Often, it can stem from repetitive motion such as typing on a computer all day. People who work with their hands on labour jobs can also be susceptible to wrist tendinitis. Bodybuilders perform wrist curls to build massive forearms. They can develop tendinitis at times, as can baseball and tennis players.
Stop The Activity
Tendinitis flare-ups require rest. People who work out need to take time off until the pain and inflammation subside. This may be not be so easy if one's injury is work-related. However, people who have tendinitis are eligible for workman's compensation.
Those with tendinitis can also use wrist braces and wraps to support the wrist, and limit its movement. This will hasten the healing process.
Ice can help reduce swelling and inflammation. It should be applied for 20 minutes, then repeated every hour or two as needed. The ice should never come in direct contact with the skin. Ice packs are highly effective in treating wrist tendinitis. Whenever possible, try elevating the affected area when icing or resting it. This will limit the swelling.
Once the swelling goes down, heat and Epsom salts can help increase blood flow to the area and promote healing.
Anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen can be used to reduce inflammation and pain. For those that have severe pain, a cortisone injection may be needed. Surgery is usually not required for wrist tendinitis.
Once the swelling and pain have subsided, stretching exercises can help restore flexibility and strength to the wrist. Simply bending the wrist up and down and from left to right can loosen up tight muscles. Squeezing a tennis ball can help build back wrist strength. Building a flexible and strong wrist is the best way to prevent future wrist tendinitis. These simple exercises can be done every day.
After stretching the muscles for a few days, try doing some light dumbbell exercises for the wrist. While seated on a bench, with one hand over the edge, do wrist curls with the palms facing up. Simply lower the weight and raise it back up. This builds the flexor muscles of the forearm, the larger muscle on the little finger side. Reverse curls, with the palms facing down, builds the extensor muscles. The stronger these muscles, the more support they will provide for the wrist. Limit these exercises to twice per week.
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