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Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and Risky Jobs

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) is one of many repetitive strain injuries (RSIs) and it’s also one of the most common present day workplace injuries, second only to low back pain! The term “Carpal Tunnel Syndrome” was first used in 1939 and since the 1950s, this disabling overuse injury to the hand has been one of the most frequent work injuries reported. So, what jobs carry the greatest risk for developing CTS?

Basically, any job that requires fast, repetitive movements of the hands with little rest can be considered a potential “risky job.” A partial list of the causes of RSIs, including CTS, are: stress, tension/tightness of the arm muscles, inflammation of the wrist tendons, repetitive movements like keyboard/mouse work, poorly designed workstations, poor posture including awkward wrist/hand positions required on the job, heavy lift/carry workloads, vitamin deficiencies, and neck / spine complaints. Couple these jobs with age > 50, and being female – especially if she takes oral contraceptives (as they retain fluids) or is pregnant or going through menopause.

Here’s a list of jobs we can consider “risky”:

The bottom line is: 1. Take multiple breaks. 2. Work at your own pace. 3. Wear a wrist brace at night (if recommended) 4. See a chiropractor to loosen up those tight hand, forearm, shoulder, and neck joints and muscles to relieve nerve pressure. DON’T jump right to surgery – it’s the “last resort.”

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