How To Prevent Carpal Tunnel Syndrome in the Workplace

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome in the Workplace

Every workplace has its hazards, and carpal tunnel syndrome is common in many. Learn how to prevent carpal tunnel syndrome in the workplace.

Carpal tunnel syndrome—also called CTS—occurs when the median nerve in your wrist gets compressed. It causes sharp pain, numbing, and muscle weakness around the hand and wrist area. In some serious cases, carpal tunnel syndrome leads to permanent nerve damage.

There are many actions and moments that put you at risk of developing CTS, and a large number of cases derive from work conditions. Whether your job involves typing or working with certain tools, any form of activity that involves frequent minor hand movements increases your chances of compressing your median nerve. Here are four ways to prevent carpal tunnel syndrome in the workplace.

Stretch and Exercise Wrists

Regularly stretching and exercising benefits your body in many ways. It strengthens muscles, releases tension, and improves flexibility. As a smaller component of your body, many forget to work out and stretch their wrists and hands—the same goes for ankles.

However, exercising your joint areas is crucial to a healthy and happy body. Plus, stretching and working out your wrists decreases your risks of CTS. It ensures your muscles don’t tense up and press against your nerves, expands your wrist’s flexibility, and strengthens your wrists to better withstand the strain of repetitive minor movements.

Take Regular Breaks

Taking breaks throughout your workday gives you time to rest your body and mind. It allows you to step back and refresh, so you can return to work in a healthy state. Whether you are typing, hand stitching, or playing the piano, continuously working your wrist requires regular breaks.

Use Ergonomic Equipment

Ergonomic equipment is specifically designed to aid your work performance with comfort and efficiency. This equipment caters to your body’s natural design, reducing the risk of strains and uncomfortable positions that cause unfavorable conditions such as carpal tunnel.

You should look for ergonomic equipment that allows for relaxed grips, avoids unnatural bending of your wrist, and provides hand-placement support.

Wear Wrist Braces

Wrist braces keep your wrists in a stiff, neutral position. They prevent you from bending your wrists in harmful ways, decreasing the risk of compressing your median nerve.

Although you don’t have to wear the brace all the time, putting it on every now and then ensures you give your sensitive wrists a break and some necessary care. It’s especially beneficial to put on a brace when you notice your wrists beginning to ache.

Carpal tunnel is a common workplace hazard in dentistry, office environments, and the food service industry—to name a few. Implementing these four ways to prevent carpal tunnel syndrome in the workplace ensures you look after yourself while working to maintain quality performance and efficiency.

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