Ergonomics, which is the science of workplace design to maximize employee productivity by reducing fatigue, discomfort, and worker injury, plays an important role in preventing and managing carpal tunnel syndrome. Numerous studies, like this one published in International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health, reveal the benefits of workplace ergonomics in reducing worker pain.
Because an office worker’s workstation is often the source of hand and wrist pain, steps should be taken to modify the workstation equipment setup and provide instruction on the proper positioning of hands, wrists, and chair in order to avoid a visit to our Florida hand surgery specialists.
Computer and Workstation Setup
Since computer workers often sit in the same position for extended periods of time, it is essential that their entire body is in proper alignment. This means that there should not be undue straining, awkward bending or long reaching in order to type or perform other work duties.
The keyboard and monitor should be situated directly in front of the worker, and the shoulders should be aligned with the neck. If they are not, adjust both the monitor and chair so they are.
In order to have your fingers rest ever so lightly on the keyboard, the keyboard is best elevated approximately two inches. Having a padded or gel-based wrist rest is ideal carpel-tunnel treatment to relieve pain and take the stress off your wrists.
Another frequently overlooked tip is to take note that the arm is moving the mouse rather than the risk.
If you work in an air-conditioned environment, consider wearing fingerless gloves to keep fingers from getting stiff.
Other Carpal Tunnel Office Worker Tips
Carpal tunnel syndrome, along with other conditions such as tendinitis may develop as a result of repetitive motion. If your office position requires you to work long hours at the computer, it is essential to take frequent breaks from typing. If your job permits, alternate your typing duties with other activities such as talking to customers or clients on the phone. Be sure to stretch and get up out of your chair periodically.
If you are particularly prone to carpal tunnel, see one of our hand specialists for a wrist splint that you can wear at night.
Further, learn keyboard shortcuts and use them as often as possible to reduce keystrokes.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Early Warning Signs
Carpal tunnel syndrome presents early warning signs, which are numbness and tingling in the hands, a burning feeling in the fingers, or pain that shoots up from the wrist into the arm. If you are experiencing these symptoms, see our hand surgeon specialists right away as carpal tunnel is easier to treat the sooner it is detected.
At the Florida Hand Center, Dr. Stephen L. Helgemo, Jr. and Dr. Ivan G. Olarte are Port Charlotte Hand Surgeons that not only provide carpel-tunnel treatment, but arthritis treatment and other specialized hand treatments.