Who's at Risk For Developing Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?

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Everyone! The individuals who are most at risk for developing carpal tunnel syndrome or repetitive strain Injuries, are people who perform jobs that require repetitive or static flexion (no-movement) of the fingers and wrist. Sustained activities that require unidirectional (one-way) movement patterns like repetitive or static flexion, along with having the wrist positioned at extreme angles, the use of vibration tools and machinery, and/or being in extreme temperatures, will increase the likely hood of developing a repetitive strain injury like carpal tunnel syndrome.

One of the most significant reasons that there is such an increase in the number of people who are being afflicted with carpal tunnel syndrome and repetitive strain injuries is the continuous rise in the use of computers. The number of computer users has increased from 5-million to 50-million in just the past 10-years, and the young age at which children begin using them has created an even larger epidemic of carpal tunnel syndrome and repetitive strain injuries. The increased use of video games, blackberries and text messaging by youth has caused injury levels to rise even further, reaching pandemic proportions in 2007 with new disorders like texter's thumb, blackberry thumb, trigger thumb and more.

Studies have shown that using the same repetitive motion thousands of times daily, year-after-year, causes serious problems for millions of people who perform continued activities that involve the already overused, stronger and tighter flexor muscles of the hand and forearm.

To make this concept even more clear, here is an example. If an individual typed 60 words per minute and worked a six-hour day, they would type around 18,000 key-strokes per hour. Each of these keystrokes takes about 8-ounces of pressure, and at the end of the 6-hours, would have pressed about 54,000 lbs. (pounds) with their wrists and fingers. This would be an equivalent to 27-tons of pressure being applied directly to the wrist and finger flexor muscles throughout the day.

It is quite easy to see how unidirectional movement patterns cause muscle a imbalance to exist, which then results in a joint imbalance and ends in impingement of the underlying median nerve. Individuals at risk for developing these types of muscle imbalances must perform appropriate balancing exercises to ensure that carpal tunnel syndrome does not present itself. These exercises can not only prevent carpal tunnel syndrome, but also rehabilitate those already suffering from its devastating effects.

List of Occupations Most at Risk for Developing Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Here is a list of jobs where Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and Repetitive Strain Injuries are most prevalent, although they affect every industry where there is repetitive movements or static, non-moving flexion of the fingers and wrist is involved. ( i.e. Occupations that require gripping or repetitious movements with combined frequency, duration, force and cold temperatures.)

  • Computer operators
  • Meat cutters
  • Assembly line workers
  • Chefs
  • Dentists
  • Secretaries
  • Tennis players
  • Musicians
  • Construction Workers
  • Medical Professionals
  • Cyclists
  • Housewives
  • Grocery Clerks
  • Truck Drivers
  • Police Officers
  • Electricians
  • Teachers

Stop Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Before it Stops You!