May 27, 2024
Home » Relieve Wrist and Hand Pain: Try These Stretches

Can various stretches be beneficial for individuals dealing with wrist and hand pain by reducing pain and discomfort to the extremities?

Introduction

In a technological-driven world, it is common for people to experience wrist and hand pain at some point in their lives. The hands are part of the body’s upper extremities and are used for various tasks and chores throughout the entire day. The forearms provide a causal relationship with the hands and wrists for the upper extremities since they offer very important motor functions to the body. The hands support the body when carrying something; the various muscles, ligaments, tendons, and joints help the wrist with mobility and flexibility. However, when injuries or everyday movements begin to affect the forearms and cause issues with the hands and wrist, it can be difficult to do simple tasks and negatively impact a person’s way of life. Fortunately, numerous ways exist to reduce the pain and discomfort of the wrist and hands. Today’s article focuses on what causes wrist and hand pain, how to prevent wrist and hand pain from returning, and how incorporating various can help reduce the pain-like effects. We discuss with certified medical providers who consolidate our patients’ information to assess the multiple causes that lead to the development of wrist and hand pain. We also inform and guide patients on how various stretches and techniques can help reduce the chances of wrist and hand pain from returning. We also encourage our patients to ask their associated medical providers many intricate and important questions about incorporating these stretches and techniques into their daily routines to live healthier lives. Dr. Jimenez, D.C., includes this information as an academic service. Disclaimer.

 

What Causes Hand and Wrist Pain?

Do you often feel pain or stiffness in your wrist after typing all day on the computer or phone? Do you have trouble gripping items in your hands? Or how often do your hands ache that massaging them causes temporary relief? Many people, including older adults, have experienced pain at some point, and most of the time, it affects the hands and wrists. Since everyone uses their hands and wrists when performing various tasks, when injuries or repetitive movements start to affect the hands and wrists, it can have a huge impact on simple tasks. When dealing with wrist and hand pain, it can make life unbearable for the person. Since pain is a normal protective response to any injuries and potentially harmful stimuli in its acute form, when prolonged or dysfunctional neuromuscular issues start to affect the body, it may contribute to disability and pain. (Merkle et al., 2020) For wrist and hand pain, many occurrences that lead to its development result from micro-stress or repetitive tear usage. 

 

 

This is because since the world is technological-driven, many people are using computers or smartphones to communicate with each other, which can be one of the causes of the development of wrist and hand pain. When many people frequently use electronic devices, the frequent movements and uses of the thumbs will increase their load and become a higher prevalence of musculoskeletal disorders. (Baabdullah et al., 2020) Other studies stated that when many individuals begin to do repetitive movements constantly and have different positions of their wrist joints while using their electronic devices continually, it can cause pain to their wrist joints and affect the structure. (Amjad et al., 2020) Additionally, when repetitive vibration exposures or forceful angular motions affect the hands and wrists, it can lead to carpal tunnel syndrome and affect the hands. (Osiak et al., 2022) The various joints, tendons, and muscles also become affected in the hands and wrist as trigger points in the forearm. Fortunately, there are multiple ways that many people can reduce the pain-like effects of wrist and hand pain.

 


The Benefits of Stretching-Video


How To Prevent Wrist & Hand Pain From Returning

There are numerous ways to reduce wrist and hand pain, and many people try to find therapeutic solutions to mitigate the pain. Non-surgical treatments like manual therapy can help with wrist and hand pain by using mobilization forces to allow wrist flexion and extension to improve motor function. (Gutierrez-Espinoza et al., 2022) Another non-surgical treatment that can help with wrist and hand pain is acupuncture. Acupuncture utilizes small, solid, thin needles to be placed in various acupoints in the forearm to reduce the pain intensity and bring back the mobility function to the hands and wrist. (Trinh et al., 2022)

 

Various Stretches For Wrist & Hand Pain

 

Fortunately, there’s a simple and accessible way for many individuals to reduce the effects of wrist and hand pain-stretching and incorporating yoga into their routine. Yoga stretches for the hands and wrists can help decompress and reduce stiffness, and these stretches can be done for just a few minutes, providing beneficial results. (Gandolfi et al., 2023Below are some of these stretches that can be easily incorporated into anyone’s routine, making it easier for you to take control of your wrist and hand health.

 

Wrist Flexor Stretch

  • How to Do It:
    • Extend your arm in front of you with your palm up.
    • Use your other hand to gently pull the fingers back toward the body until you feel a stretch in your forearm.
    • Hold this position for about 15 to 30 seconds.
    • Repeat 2-3 times with each wrist.

 

Wrist Extensor Stretch

  • How to Do It:
    • Extend your arm in front of your body with your palm facing down.
    • Gently pull the fingers towards your body with your other hand until you feel a stretch on the outside of your forearm.
    • Hold for 15 to 30 seconds.
    • Do this 2-3 times per wrist.

 

Prayer Stretch

  • How to Do It:
    • Put the palms together in a prayer position in front of the chest, below the chin.
    • Slowly lower the conjoined hands towards the waistline, keeping the hands close to your stomach and your palms together until you feel a stretch under your forearms.
    • Hold for at least 30 seconds and repeat a few times.

 

Tendon Glides

  • How to Do It:
    • Start with your fingers extended straight out.
    • Then, bend your fingers to form a hook fist; you should feel a stretch but no pain.
    • Return to the starting position and bend your fingers to touch the top of your palm, keeping your fingers straight.
    • Finally, bend your fingers into a full fist.
    • Repeat the sequence ten times.

 

Thumb Stretch

  • How to Do It:
    • Extend your hand with your fingers together.
    • Pull your thumb away from your fingers as far as comfortable.
    • Hold for 15 to 30 seconds.
    • Repeat 2-3 times with each thumb.

 

Shake It Out

  • How to Do It:
    • After stretching, shake your hands lightly as if trying to dry them off. This helps reduce tension and promote circulation.

References

Amjad, F., Farooq, M. N., Batool, R., & Irshad, A. (2020). Frequency of wrist pain and its associated risk factors in students using mobile phones. Pak J Med Sci, 36(4), 746-749. doi.org/10.12669/pjms.36.4.1797

Baabdullah, A., Bokhary, D., Kabli, Y., Saggaf, O., Daiwali, M., & Hamdi, A. (2020). The association between smartphone addiction and thumb/wrist pain: A cross-sectional study. Medicine (Baltimore), 99(10), e19124. doi.org/10.1097/MD.0000000000019124

Gandolfi, M. G., Zamparini, F., Spinelli, A., & Prati, C. (2023). Asana for Neck, Shoulders, and Wrists to Prevent Musculoskeletal Disorders among Dental Professionals: In-Office Yoga Protocol. J Funct Morphol Kinesiol, 8(1). doi.org/10.3390/jfmk8010026

Gutierrez-Espinoza, H., Araya-Quintanilla, F., Olguin-Huerta, C., Valenzuela-Fuenzalida, J., Gutierrez-Monclus, R., & Moncada-Ramirez, V. (2022). Effectiveness of manual therapy in patients with distal radius fracture: a systematic review and meta-analysis. J Man Manip Ther, 30(1), 33-45. doi.org/10.1080/10669817.2021.1992090

Merkle, S. L., Sluka, K. A., & Frey-Law, L. A. (2020). The interaction between pain and movement. J Hand Ther, 33(1), 60-66. doi.org/10.1016/j.jht.2018.05.001

Osiak, K., Elnazir, P., Walocha, J. A., & Pasternak, A. (2022). Carpal tunnel syndrome: state-of-the-art review. Folia Morphol (Warsz), 81(4), 851-862. doi.org/10.5603/FM.a2021.0121

Trinh, K., Zhou, F., Belski, N., Deng, J., & Wong, C. Y. (2022). The Effect of Acupuncture on Hand and Wrist Pain Intensity, Functional Status, and Quality of Life in Adults: A Systematic Review. Med Acupunct, 34(1), 34-48. doi.org/10.1089/acu.2021.0046

 

Disclaimer

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The information herein on "Relieve Wrist and Hand Pain: Try These Stretches" is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional or licensed physician and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make healthcare decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified healthcare professional.

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