Sometimes you know exactly why your wrist hurts, you fell and used your hand to brace for impact, and sometimes you don’t. If your wrist pain came on more gradually, you may be wondering what is causing it? There are several potential reasons why you may be experiencing pain in your wrist, but before we discuss the five most common causes of wrist pain, let’s take a quick look at the anatomy of your wrist.
The wrist is formed where the two bones of the forearm – the radius (the larger bone on the thumb side of the arm) and the ulna (the smaller bone on the pinky side) – meet the carpal(wrist) bones. Rather than a single joint, the wrist is a complex joint of eight small bones, with ligaments, tendons and muscles. The unique formation of bones and ligaments is what gives your wrist a wide range of movements: up and down; side to side, and around in a circle. Damage to any of the components can cause wrist pain.
Check out our video “Relieve TFCC & Wrist Pain with the Wrist POP Splint” – View Video
5 Common Causes of Wrist Pain
1. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is the most common cause of wrist pain. Carpal Tunnel develops when the median nerve that runs from the forearm through the wrist gets mashed and inflamed. Because the nerve is damaged, sensory impulses aren’t transmitted the way they should be. You may initially feel itchiness, numbness, or burning in your fingers and hand.
2. Repetitive Stress Injuries – (Also known as Overuse Injuries) are caused by activities and sports requiring the same motion over and over. This repetitive motion can irritate your nerves and tendons resulting in wrist pain, swelling, and loss of muscle strength. Activities ranging from hammering to playing tennis to typing – all done repetitively can cause stress. Even light activities such as cleaning, painting. playing cornhole or gardening can cause wrist pain. One example of a common overuse condition is de Quervain’s Tenosynovitis. This repetitive stress injury causes inflammation and swelling in the tendons on the thumb side of your wrist and up the side of your wrist and forearm.
3. Arthritis – Can cause swelling, loss of mobility, and stiffness, and can occur in any joint, including the wrist. Arthritis may begin with mild symptoms but can progress causing pain and loss of movement.
4. Tendinitis – When repetitive stress injuries cause swelling or irritation of a tendon, this is called tendinitis. In the early stages, tendinitis may create burning feelings, shooting pains, fatigue or weakness, but continued stress causes the tissues around the joint to become inflamed, causing even more pain.
5. Injury, Sprain or Fractures – falling onto an outstretched hand can cause injury, sprain or fractures to your wrist. Pain, swelling, decreased range of motion, and tenderness in your wrist are all common symptoms. A TFCC injury or tear (triangular fibro-cartilage complex) can occur during an accident, such as falling on your hand and can cause chronic wrist pain. Sometimes called a wrist sprain, TFCC can be very painful and cause loss of motion.
What You Can Do For Your Wrist Pain
The best treatments for wrist pain are prevention, rest and support to your wrist. Wrist splints and braces that support, stabilize and protect can be worn to give your wrist time to heal.
Splints that can help include the WS6 Compression Wrist Sleeve for light support and pain relief for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Arthritis, Wrist Strain or Tendinitis.
The 3pp Ez FIT ThumSpica Splint immobilizes your thumb and supports your wrist to help reduce pain from de Quervain’s Tenosynovitis
The 3pp® Wrist Wrap NP for moderate support for Arthritis, Tendinitis, or Wrist Sprains
The 3pp Wrist POP Splint to reduce the pain from TFCC injuries and other causes of wrist pain.
As with any health concern, if your pain and swelling continues, it’s important to consult with your health care provider to find out why your wrist hurts and the recommended treatment.Like what you’ve read? Click here to subscribe to the blog!
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Our blogs are educational in nature and are not intended as a substitute for medical advice. Because your condition is unique to you, it is recommended that you consult with your health care provider before attempting any medical or therapeutic treatments. We are always happy to answer questions about products mentioned in our blogs, however, we cannot provide a diagnosis or medical advice.