I need guidance on thumb pain/RSI symptoms that I can't find info on...
December 21, 2011 7:56 AM   Subscribe

I'm getting some kind of RSI on the side of the end of my thumb (exterior, adjacent to the right side of my thumbnail.) It feels like it is burning and getting worse. It is the spot where I hit the spacebar/trackpad. I'm worried, but in reading up on thumb pain, can't find this particular injury, nor any suggested remedies.
posted by soulbarn to Health & Fitness (5 answers total)
I have a new MacBook pro through work and I've been getting this. I've found training yourself to use an index finger to depress the mousepad sorts the problem. Four days later, gone now.
posted by dmt at 9:33 AM on December 21, 2011

I had a similar problem once. I forced myself to start using both thumbs as close to 50-50 as I could manage, and the pain stopped in short order.
posted by cupcakeninja at 9:54 AM on December 21, 2011

Get a mouse instead of using the trackpad; I had a similar issue and that went a long way. Also consider a different keyboard or a wrist brace (see below).

Also be sure that your chair height and desk (or whatever) height are comfortable. When I don't jack my office chair up all the way, my desk is too tall by comparison and my wrists press against it. If I am sitting too tall, though, my wrists may fall at too much of a 90 degree angle and cause the same problem. If you cannot adjust your chair/desk for some reason -- chair isn't adjustable, or your thighs are squishes under the desk if you go high enough -- then you must buy a new chair or desk or both. There's really no way around that, unfortunately.

Finally, you can buy wrist braces for arthritis and tendonitis at the drug store that will force your hand into certain alignments that make these kinds of injuries difficult to make any worse; they usually limit the range of thumb motion as well. If you have any numbness or tingling anywhere, I highly recommend using one until the sensation stops even after you get a mouse and attend to chair/desk height. This worked for me.
posted by Nattie at 12:00 PM on December 21, 2011

Yoga got rid of all RSI related pains that I used to deal with.
posted by stratastar at 10:01 PM on December 21, 2011

I had this with an ingrown thumbnail. Check that isn't the cause.
posted by blue_wardrobe at 12:56 PM on December 22, 2011

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