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5 Symptoms in Your Hand or Wrist That You Shouldn’t Ignore

5 Symptoms in Your Hand or Wrist That You Shouldn’t Ignore

Your hands and wrists are in constant motion throughout the day, and there’s very little that doesn’t somehow involve these appendages. So, when you develop an issue, you’re probably aware of it, but you have a lot to do and are hesitant to seek help.

When it comes to many hand and wrist issues, you ignore them at your peril. All too often, people wait until the pain and/or disability is so great that using the hand is out of the question.

Instead of waiting so long, it’s a much better idea to have our team of experts step in sooner and address the issue. At Western Orthopaedics, we handle musculoskeletal issues from head to toe, which includes the all-important hands and wrists.

So, if you’ve developed an issue in your hand or wrist, we want you to review the following list of symptoms — symptoms that signal an issue that warrants our help.

Leading drivers of hand and wrist pain

Before we get into the symptoms in your hands and wrists that can benefit from our help, let’s quickly review some of the more common culprits behind the problem.

There are more than 100 different types of arthritis, which explains why 1 in 5 Americans is affected. The most common types of arthritis to strike your hands and wrists are rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.

Next up are nerve entrapment issues like carpal tunnel syndrome, which affects between 1% and 5% of the general population, with women outpacing men by 3 to 1.

Fractures and sprains in your fingers, hands, and wrists are also common drivers of symptoms.

Of course, there are other issues that can develop in your hands and wrists, but we want to focus more on symptoms, rather than trying to diagnose the problem from afar.

Take action with these hand and wrist symptoms

Now, let’s get to the heart of our discussion — symptoms in your hands and wrists that you shouldn't ignore, which include:

1. Pain

Let’s start with an obvious symptom that’s hard to ignore. While many of us encounter pain on a daily basis, we’re talking about nagging and lingering pain. If the pain in your hand or wrist doesn’t go away, gets worse with certain movements, gets worse in general, and/or flares at night, it’s time to get to the bottom of it.

Pain in all its many forms is your body’s way of getting your attention, so heed the call if the pain is ongoing and progressive.

2. Swelling

When there’s swelling in your body, it means that there’s damage and your body is trying to respond. Like pain, if the swelling in your fingers, hand, or wrist doesn’t go away after a few days of icing, or it gets worse, it means the damage is likely extensive and can benefit from outside intervention.

3. Loss of function

If you're unable to perform simple tasks — your wrist gives out when you lift something or your fingers are too stiff to type — this loss of function is a strong signal that something is wrong.

4. Visible changes

If you notice small lumps around the joints in your fingers or there are areas that are redder and warmer, these surface developments could be signs of something much larger going on below.

5. Extra mobility in your fingers

In advanced states of thumb arthritis, your other fingers can become more mobile to make up for the deficit. This increased mobility can be problematic for these fingers, not to mention you’re likely losing function in your thumb at the same time. 

There are other signs of problems in your hands and wrists that we didn’t cover, such as numbness and tingling or bruising, so add these to our growing list.

The bottom line is that if you’re finding it difficult to use your hand or wrist and the issue isn’t going away or it’s getting worse, it’s time to get our help. For expert diagnosis and treatment of hand and wrist issues, please contact one of our offices in Arvada or Denver, Colorado, to schedule an appointment.

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