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General Chat Thread, Bad wrists in General; A year or so ago, my right hand and wrist (I am right handed) started to hurt when using a ...
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    Jawloms's Avatar
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    Bad wrists

    A year or so ago, my right hand and wrist (I am right handed) started to hurt when using a mouse. I now cannot use one for more than a couple of minutes without being in a massive amount of pain. I'd heard trackballs helped so I bought one. I have absolutely no idea why, but I use it left handed - it just felt easier from the beginning. I am now getting pain in my left wrist and the joint is clicking a lot. Two things;
    1. What do other people do to help themselves?
    2. Is there an official route I should go down to get help with it with my school? I've obviously been to the GP and he has referred me to a joint specialist. I'm now waiting for that appointment.

    Thank you

    Stuart

  2. #2
    EvLPhenom's Avatar
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    You should speak to your H+S person. They should then be looking at your work area as a result of this. We had a couple of people here who had similar problems but with back and arm issues and they have since had ergonmic mice and keyboard, mounted monitor brackets so the monitors move easier and different chairs.

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    Jawloms (29th June 2011)

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    arwen's Avatar
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    To me it sounds like its more to do with how you use the mouse/trackball than the actually device. Do you use a wrist rest? Do you move only your wrist when using them or do you let you whole arm move? How far away from your body is the mouse/trackball?

    I suffer from sore wrists from time to time. I find using an erognomic keyboard and keeping the mouse relativley close to my body helps. Wrist rests give me a sore wrists within mintues of using them. A trick I was told (and seems to work) was to keep your elbow off the desk while using the mouse, not sure how this would work for a trackball however. Could the hight of the track ball be causing your pain?


    Lucky you at getting referd to a specialist! I've been waiting for nearly 4 years...
    Last edited by arwen; 29th June 2011 at 02:14 PM. Reason: spelling

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    Jawloms (29th June 2011)

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    Have you tried a vertical mouse ? It's not a natural way for the wrists to lay when using a normal mouse, your wrist is twisted when using. A vertical mouse corrects this.

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    Jawloms (29th June 2011)

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    36Degrees's Avatar
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    Is there nobody there who can carry out a formal desk assessment? This should look at the height and positioning of your chair, height and positioning of your monitor, whether you need a footrest, desk space, etc. Also the Local Council should have an Occupational Therapist that can advise about mice, wrist supports, etc.

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    Jawloms (29th June 2011)

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    nephilim's Avatar
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    Sounds like Carpel Tunnel...I have it (and awaiting surgery), quite painful stuff.

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    CESIL's Avatar
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    I have been having trouble with my right wrist/arm.shoulder for about 10 years...when it first started I went to the doctor and he said the only way to improve thing was to rest the arm. At the time I was working for an off-shoot of BT coding websites 8 hours a day (well maybe not all day ) so I started working left-handed and this has improved my right arm a lot.

    It does throw people here though when they see my desk as I have a mouse on the left for my desktop machine that is set left handed and a mouse the other side set right handed for use with the intranet server at the other end of my desk...

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    I used to have exactly your symptoms until I switched to a track-ball 10 years ago and just like you, I use it left handed, but with right hand buttons. I'm right handed and I figured my right hand was being overworked. Since the switch to track-ball and the use of more keyboard shortcuts, I've had no more problems. I sometimes spread a folded towel in front of the keyboard, mostly in the hot weather. The desk always seems harder when the temperature is higher. I don't find a wrist rest to be of any use.

    When I first had the problems, the doctor suggested I use a set of grippers to build wrist strength. I don't know if it did. I keep grippers in the car and use them while waiting for traffic lights to change.

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    Jawloms (29th June 2011)

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    I found buying a good chair with arm rests you can adjust to the height of the desk really helps remove the strain on your wrists.

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    Jawloms (29th June 2011)

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    Office Ergonomics | Discover Workstation Ergonomics with Fellowes

    Fellows offer a free online assesment of your working environment, also lots of into on there about how your desk should be set up. might be worth a look.

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    Jawloms (29th June 2011)

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    Your site should have some one that can perform DSE assessments, or at lease your LA should be able to help.

    The official line when enouncing these problems is that you should visit your GP and have it checked out (mainly to rule out any underlying medical conditions) but you may find that a simple wrist rest for your mouse and keyboard could resolve your problems. Also making sure you take the appropriate brakes can help (10 mins in every hour is the current guideline) this can be any other work away from the computer, I know very unlikely to happen but they be the current guidelines.

    My understanding (may be wrong or it might have changed, please correct me if I'm wrong) is that workstation assessments were required by H&S every year or when a major change to a workstation had occurred, assuming that you use the computer for more than 2 hours per day.

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    Jawloms (29th June 2011)

  20. #12

    Jawloms's Avatar
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    Thank you very much for all the responses. I've now spoken to my H&S person and he's going to do a desk assessment tomorrow. He said he knows pretty much no-one has anything which meets any requirements, but I'm the first person to raise it! I'll try some of the other suggestions in here too.

    I've tried a wrist rest in the past and that aggravated my wrist. I know something needs to be done as a while ago my shoulders started hurting a lot. I realised it was because I'd lowered my chair and was simply leaning on the desk a lot more!

    We'll see where this goes....... The school might have to spend some money! There'll be so many sharp intakes of breath around here, Suffolk could end up as a vacuum!

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    Press-ups.

    (not kidding, even just 10 a day really helped when my wrists were twinging a bit).

    And obviously, fix your environment as suggested above.

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    Jawloms (29th June 2011)

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    I find using a graphics tablet with a pen-type stylus helps relieve wrist pain as the wrist is in a more neutral position.

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