When most people think of workplace injuries, they think of extreme circumstances, such as fires and chemical burns. However, many people sustain injuries due to repetitive motions performed while sitting at a desk for hours on end. Out of these types of workplace injuries, carpal tunnel syndrome is arguably the most common.
As with many repetitive motions, many people will not realize there is a problem until months or even years have passed. Therefore, it is critical to be aware of how your job could impact your body, so you can take action now to prevent issues in the future. In the event you develop carpal tunnel syndrome and believe it is a direct result of your work environment, then do not hesitate to file a workers’ comp claim.
To prevent this problem from taking place, you should keep your hands and wrists in comfortable positions as you work. You should avoid extending and flexing your wrists often. Finally, you should consult with your doctor about any exercises you can do to keep your hands and wrists in good shape.
Carpal tunnel symptoms will only become worse if left untreated. At first, you may notice an itching, tingling or burning sensation in your hands and fingers. At night, you may realize your fingers have fallen asleep. In extreme cases, patients will be unable to grip objects properly. Over time, this will lead to a loss of strength in the thumb, loss of feeling in multiple fingers and slower nerve impulses. This can eventually lead to permanent muscle damage.
Self-care can sometimes be the best route to take, especially if you have just noticed symptoms. Your doctor may also recommend wearing a wrist brace for a few weeks until you see an improvement in your symptoms. If no other treatments work, then you may need to undergo surgery.