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Sugar Land, TX News – Memorial Hermann Offers Advice For Arthritis Pain

Sugar Land, TX News (October 16, 2014) – Memorial Hermann Sugar Land knows that hand pain can be debilitating and prevent you from accomplishing simple tasks like opening a jar or picking up a child. The good news is, it can be easily treated.

“Osteoarthritis affects one in three people age 65 and older, probably because older joints and surrounding cartilage wear out,” says Matthew Koepplinger, D.O., a hand surgeon with UT Physicians affiliated with Memorial Hermann Sugar Land. “One of the most common places for arthritis to strike is the hands, and women are more likely to suffer than men.”

Other possible causes of hand pain include accident or injury, overuse disorders such as carpal tunnel syndrome, stroke, and osteoarthritis.

One of the most effective methods of treating hand pain is hand therapy, which can help ease the ache and restore lost abilities. This type of relief is typically provided by an occupational or physical therapist. Nonsurgical treatment options include exercises to increase flexibility, splints to prevent or correct injury, and training to perform tasks correctly and easily.

The first thing a therapist does is learn what you normally do with your hands and find ways to adapt. If you like to bake, for instance, spooning batter for cupcakes may be easier than pouring it from a bowl. Your therapist may also give tips for how to deal with hand pain throughout the day. For example, if your hands hurt most in the morning, beginning your day with a warm bath or shower may ease your pain.

It may be just as important to find out what you shouldn’t do with your hands as what you should do. To stop or change activities that cause hand pain, don’t bend or twist your hands repeatedly, avoid using tools that are too big for your hands, keep your forearms level with your keyboard to avoid flexing your wrists when you type, and take regular breaks to avoid repeating the same hand movements too frequently.

To learn more about hand pain and other orthopedic issues, visit www.memorialhermann.org/orthopedics.

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