Wrist Pain: Common Causes and Coping Techniques

by | May 24, 2018 | Dentist

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Pain in the wrist is a common complaint, especially in this era of near-constant use of cellphones, tablets, computers, and other devices. Wrist pain treatment is as varied as the many potential causes of the discomfort. Here is a brief guide to three of the most common causes of wrist pain – and a little bit of information on managing each!


Arthritis is one of the most common causes of wrist pain, especially in the elderly. Because arthritis is not a single condition – but rather a way of categorizing pain, swelling, numbness and lack of mobility in the joints – there can be multiple causes, triggers, and even lesser-known symptoms that family doctors may not be familiar with.

Typically, the condition is inflammatory and can be managed well with anti-inflammatory measures – such as medication, ice or heat therapies, and other at-home techniques – there are serious and even infectious types of arthritis that require intervention by a medical professional.


Although tendinitis typically manifests as pain in the knee or elbow, there are many sufferers who deal with persistent discomfort in their hands, fingers, and wrists due to this condition. Symptoms include:

  • Dull, achy pain

  • Discomfort when moving or using the affected area

  • Swelling

  • Tenderness to touch

Causes are varied, but tendinitis is often caused or aggravated by repetitive motion, overhead reaching or awkward hand and arm positions.

While the condition typically responds well to at-home treatment and self-care, some cases require intervention by a healthcare professional. Because today’s doctors are increasingly wary of prescribing pain medications for these types of conditions, many patients elect to try alternative or complementary therapies. West Chester, OH patients can find many of these wrist pain treatment options with local providers who specialize in drug-free approaches.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

While carpal tunnel syndrome is like tendinitis in that it is typically caused by repetitive motion and aggravated by the same, its symptoms are more consistently-located and are slightly different. Those suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome may deal with:

  • Shooting pain, especially during movement of the hand or thumb.

  • Numbness and tingling.

  • Limited mobility in the hands and fingers.

Treatment for carpal tunnel is also more intensive and may require surgery. Untreated, the condition may lead to permanent nerve damage and loss of feeling. If you suffer from carpal tunnel, you will need to consult a medical professional for information on what type of treatment is best for your individual case.

Whatever the cause of your wrist paint, there is a treatment option that will help you live a better, less painful and more fulfilling life. Talk to your doctor at your next office visit and ask which approach might be the right one for you.

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