Using smartphones does not seem like any physical activity but when we consider the tendons and muscles that are present in our hands and thumb it can be more than just scrolling that we can think of. It is not less than any workout. The tapping from our thumbs to like all those cute pet photos, Zooming in on those pictures to have a closer look. All those swiping from one Facebook post to another, one tweet after tweet, from one Instagram photo to another insta photo. It feels easy to spend those hours swiping down our mobile phones. But are we aware of the consequences?. If you notice, after all that scrolling. As a result, some of us develop severe pain in our thumbs and that condition is known as the texting thumb.
If talking about the stats, on average, it has been calculated that people in their 30s engage in almost 10 messages per day. Whereas, the teenagers or people in their 20s exchange approximately 67 messages a day, which means, approx 2k messages per month.
Types Of Texting Thumb
The texting thumb has two types, a trigger thumb, and thumb arthritis.
In this specific condition, a person is restricted to move or flex their thumb. This strain is usually caused by the constant holding of your mobile and also tapping to type a text message. This practice can cause the thumb to pop out of the place and can remain in that curled position if extended too frequently.
The thumb arthritis is a condition that is caused in our joint at the place where the wrist and thumb are joined. Once you start suffering from this condition, there is no treatment to fix the problem.
What Can Be The Possible Causes Of A Texting Thumb?
The possible cause of a texting thumb is the repetitive hand movements. These frequent hand movements cause a lot of inflammation in the tendons of the thumb. The term texting thumb might sound something new, but the category of syndromes it falls into isn’t something new.
It has been decades that orthopedic surgeons have been diagnosing versions of texting thumb.
How Would I Know If I Am The Victim?
If you are experiencing some pain in your thumb and suspecting that you might also be suffering from a texting thumb, the first question that you should ask your own self is: How many hours have I been spending on my mobile lately?.
The pain in the thumb is usually experienced when the wrist is flexed or turned as well as when we clench our fist. If you are experiencing the exact same issues, it seems like you should see a doctor before these conditions get severe.
Can We Prevent The Texting Thumb?
If you are already suffering from the texting thumb, it is quite difficult to get rid of it but if we decide to fix your routine and prevent these issues, there are some useful tips that you can follow.
According to the doctors, taking frequent breaks between the times of your lengthy smartphone sessions and using hands-free when possible can get your hand the rest that it needs.
You can also try and ease your thumb by following these tips:
- Limit your texting for a while
- Using audio/voice message options
- Leave texting for a while and giving your thumb a rest
- Take medicines which are anti-inflammatory drugs
- Start using thumb brace (in severe cases)
Which Doctor Should I See If I Am Suffering From This Condition?
If you are suffering from this condition, the best option is to see an orthopedic specialist so they can diagnose and treat your condition as soon as it is required. This condition, if not attended can get worse and also can become untreatable.
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Javeria Adil Chughtai
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