We tend to take all the many and varied daily tasks – large and small – so much for granted.
It is only when the pains arrive that we realize how even the most simple tasks become difficult.
Beneath the skin, your hands are an intricate maze of tendons, joints, ligaments, nerves, and bones. Injury and illness can disrupt any one of their functions.
Persistent joint problems are by far the most common cause of hand pain and disability. Another common cause of hand pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, affects an estimated 2% to 3% of Americans. Contrary to conventional wisdom, this nerve disorder rarely results from repetitive work-related tasks, as a growing body of research reveals. True work-related musculoskeletal disorders are known as repetitive stress injuries and can be quite debilitating. But there are steps you can take to prevent them.
If you work in an office, it's a good idea to have an ergonomic evaluation of your workspace to avoid habits that may put you at risk for repetitive strain injuries. The following tips may help:
Ergonomics specialists who design strategies to improve the fit between workers and their jobs suggest the following arrangement for computer workstations: