If you are finding that when you are at your computer typing away you experience pain
or discomfort in your hands, wrist, and shoulders, you are not alone. You, like many,
could be experiencing symptoms of Carpel Tunnel Syndrome. Carpel Tunnel Syndrome
results in the highest number of days lost among all work-related injuries. How many
days? Almost half of all Carpel Tunnel Syndrome cases result in 31 days or more of work
loss. What’s even more surprising is that surgery for Carpel Tunnel Syndrome is the
second most common type of surgery in the United States. It was also found that the
failure rate of CTS surgery after one year was 72.6%.
What can you begin to do if you are experiencing Carpel Tunnel Syndrome symptoms?
Implementing small changes can make a big difference. Examine your office
environment and evaluate your ergonomics:
Mind your posture at the computer
Keep your eyes level with the screen.
Ideally your screen should be two feet away from you and the top of your
document should be at eye level. Set up your keyboard so that it is flat or slightly
Limit use of mouse
Hold mouse without bending wrist. Keep mouse as close
to the keyboard as possible and move it with your arm, not wrist. Wrists should
not bend side to side. Hold the mouse lightly, don’t grip it hard or squeeze it.
When typing it is recommended not to let your wrist rest on anything.
Take short breaks every 15-20 minutes
Taking breaks away from the
computer can be helpful. Pace and plan your computer work.
Keep elbows bent at a 90-degree angle while using your keyboard or writing
Ears, hips and shoulders should line up vertically
Do not slouch in your seat
or hunch over to read the font. Consider enlarging the font size so you don’t need
to strain to see the screen.
There are also many non-surgerical methods to help Carpel Tunnel such as Muscle
Activation Techniques, acupuncture, and supplements such as B6. Researching
alternatives and correcting the cause of the Carpel Tunnel can provide the best long