Wrist Pain in Happy Valley

Wrist sprains and fractures are among the most common injuries. The prevalence in sports, for example, account for an estimated 25-50% of all injuries. Another surprising fact, grip strength is now correlated to all-cause mortality (likelihood of dying)!

Classifying Wrist Pain

  • Tendonitis – Inflammation of the tendon.
  • Tendinopathy – Longstanding tendonitis that leads to degenerative changes in the tendon.
  • Tenosynovitis – Inflammation of the sheath surrounding the tendon which tendons slide through.
  • De Quervain’s Syndrome – A specific tendonitis involving the tendons on the top of the thumb.

Common Complaints (Symptoms)

Typical complaints of patients experiencing tendonitis around the wrist include:

  • Pain, aching, sore, stiffness, or sharp that can travel anywhere from elbow to wrist.
  • Pain or symptoms on either the thumb or little finger sides of wrist.
  • Pain or symptoms during or while your wrist is twisted.
  • Pain or symptoms with direct loading such as when bearing weight through hands.
  • Any observable or perceived swelling around the wrist.
  • Tenderness or symptoms experienced during massage of forearm or wrist.  

Diagnosing Wrist Pain

One of our Doctors of Physical Therapy will perform a thorough examination of the region while differentiating between possible strains, sprains, fractures, or other pathology such as carpal tunnel syndrome. During the physical examination, you can expect measurements for your: range of motion, swelling, sensation, and strength – including grip strength. Other pertinent information that will be collected include the history related to your symptoms such as:

  • When did this begin?
  • Has it gotten better or worse?
  • What do your symptoms feel like?
  • Where do you feel those symptoms?
  • And, most importantly, how has this affected your life and what are your goals?

Treatment Strategies for Wrist Pain

You will receive an individually tailored plan of care based on the examination findings with your therapist and focused toward your goals. Here are some example strategies that you can expect to be incorporated into your overall treatment plan.

Reduction of Symptoms – Acute, or recent, injuries need to be protected to prevent further damage and inflammation of injured tissues. Relative rest and ice can be great for immediate reduction in inflammatory processes. Therapeutic mobilization of the joints can assist in relaxation of tight muscles and facilitate reduction in swelling.

Restoration of Strength & Motion – A prescriptive set of exercises and targeted stretches will begin resolving any impairments that developed as a result of your symptoms. Correction of muscle imbalances, compensatory strategies, and rehabilitation of function are fundamental pillars of a successful treatment plan.

Education – Training on body mechanics, postures, and ergonomics are immensely valuable in protection of the joints and reduction of re-injury risk.

General Tips for Maintaining Excellent Wrist Health

  • Minimize time spent performing repetitive tasks (as able) or take rest breaks.
  • Perform a brief warm-up routine prior to engaging in repetitive or intensive gripping tasks.
  • Stretch your wrists from time to time to ensure good mobility.
  • Use good ergonomics whether at work or at play to minimize excessive strain in your wrists.
  • Listen to your body. If you are experiencing pain that does not resolve after resting or comes back after resuming an activity, have a provider evaluate and identify the cause and a solution.

If wrist pain or symptoms have been interfering with your life, call us today to get started on a plan of care that works for you. Ascent Physical Therapy is conveniently located off Sunnyside Road in Happy Valley. We also love treating our neighboring communities of Damascus, Gresham, Clackamas, and Sandy at our top rated physical therapy clinic!