3 Things You Need To Know If You Have Arthritis In Your Hands

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Your hands are important in everything you do. Having arthritis, however can make using your hands more challenging. Here are a few special considerations to keep in mind when going about your daily routine:

1. It is important to perform gentle hand exercises every day to keep the joints and muscles moving/flexible.

2. Take special precautions to protect your hands from further damage by incorporating joint protection/work simplification techniques into your daily routine.

Functional Strategies

1. Avoid any activity that involves holding joints or muscles in one position for long periods of time.

Muscles tire easily in static positions. As they tire they transfer stress to the ligaments and other joint structures.

● Take frequent breaks.

● Change positions frequently.

2. Avoid tight grasp or tasks that require great manual strength

This can increase stress on your small hand joints. Instead use tools instead of your hands as tools.

● Use a jar opener or ask someone for help.

● Use an electric can opener instead of a manual opener.

● Use larger handled items such an electric toothbrush, larger barreled pen or OXO/Good Grips cooking utensils.

● Avoid wringing out a cloth. Instead use a dishwand or similar to wash dishes.

3. Avoid fatigue

You are more vulnerable and weaker and less able to perform tasks efficiently which can lead to stress to the joints.

● Plan short rest periods throughout the day.

● Listen to your body and rest before you get tired.

● Get plenty or rest at night.

● Conserve your energy! It is important to prioritize and balance your daily routine.

Feel free to contact an OSI Hand Therapist for your free phone consultation or visit us at osipt.com to set up an appointment. We are here to get you back to what is important to you! – Kari