Playing video games, typing on a keyboard, driving a motorcycle, and playing a musical instrument can all make the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome worse, and anyone who has experienced it will tell you it’s serious business.
Carpal tunnel syndrome, which is a pinched nerve that results from pressure and swelling in a “tunnel” in the wrist, can be much more painful than the general public realizes.
In fact, in October Al Roker of “The Today Show” was forced to undergo emergency carpal tunnel surgery when he lost use of his thumb during rehearsals for a Broadway show.
But he is far from the only star who has experienced CTS.
- When Jessica Alba woke up to a numb arm, she worried that she had experienced a stroke. As it turns out, she was experiencing carpal tunnel syndrome, which women are three times more susceptible to than men are.
- Online gaming and video games are often the culprits when it comes to irritating existing carpal tunnel issues, as “Friends” star Matthew Perry and Boston Red Sox Pitcher David Price might possibly tell you.
- In 2015, Brooke Shields underwent carpal tunnel surgery on both of her wrists.
The exact causes of CTS are unclear, so that means it can essentially affect anyone at any time. Some activities, like those mentioned above, can exacerbate the condition, which includes pain, swelling, and numbness in the hands.
Although you might not be able to avoid CTS completely, you can be proactive by:
- Using proper posture as you’re typing and also using ergonomic keyboards
- Using wrist braces during activities like bowling
- Using protection as you’re working in the construction, automobile, and manufacturing industry.
Bending and stretching your wrists every now and then during certain activities can help as well.
In some cases, surgery may be necessary to address the issue. The surgery usually entails cutting a ligament within the carpal tunnel on the palm side of your hand.
If you’re experiencing CTS symptoms, make an appointment to see our hand surgeon for an exam.