Planning on doing some shopping for the holiday season? Black Friday and Cyber Monday are upon us. Here are some shopping suggestions to help you choose the perfect gift of health for family, friends or co-workers who suffer from the pain of carpal tunnel syndrome, tendinitis, or arthritic hand joints. Or maybe you deserve to treat yourself??
(Please note: I have no financial interest in or reimbursement received from promoting any of the following products. They are items that I just truly believe can be helpful.)
As computers and portable devices have become smaller so have keyboards. This makes it more difficult to maintain a good, neutral wrist posture while typing. Those keyboards that have the inverted “V” down the middle help align the fingers with the forearm easing tension on the sides of the wrist and preventing wrist pain and tendinitis.
A Vertical Mouse
Using a mouse that is turned onto its side places the forearm in a more neutral position and can ease mousing pain.
A Laptop Stand with a Free-Standing Keyboard
Although the portability of laptops make them a wonderful choice for those on-the-go, inherently the design will place either stress on the arms or stress on the neck. When at home, turn your laptop into a more ergonomically friendly desktop device by using a stand with an accessory keyboard.
A Large-Barreled Pen or Ergonomically Designed Pen
Many people write with tension. Using a larger barreled pen such as the Dr. Grip, a felt-tip pen that writes smoothly, or an ergonomically designed pen such as the PenAgain can ease thumb pain and hand cramping.
For an at-home-spa treat, a paraffin bath is not only good for relaxation but can help ease the deep ache caused by many hand injuries. Also, heat is good for increasing the flexibility of joints, easing joint pain caused by arthritis, and enhancing the softness of a thick scar.
Seen on many athletes, therapeutic tape does not bind the joints for support the way athletic tape does but rather lies on the muscle belly. The oscillating pattern of the adhesive, as well as mild stretch, lifts the surface of the skin, increases lymphatic and blood flow to the area, and relaxes the tissues around the superficial free nerve endings – providing some instant pain relief for most people! Instructions for application are usually provided in the box. There are also multiple online videos that show proper application.
An Electric Can-Opener
Or, for that matter, any electronic gadgets that can ease the work that the hands do….electric can-opener, electric jar opener, electric knife. Often these products can be found at discounted prices during this time of year.
Gadgets and Gizmos
The OXO brand is a good example of a company that has designed products specifically for arthritic joints and those with hand pain. The handles are larger and softer. Bed, Bath and Beyond usually has a large display of the various kitchen tools. WhateverWorks.com is a website with a paper catalog that offers functionally based produces.
I’m really liking this new product that provides a sure grip while easing the tension of holding larger smart phones.
A Good Book
Dr. Pascarelli, one of the leading experts on repetitive strain injuries, has written several easy-to-read but informative books including the Complete Guide to Repetitive Strain Injury: What You Need to Know About RSI and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome or Repetitive Strain Injury: A Computer User’s Guide
And a Few Bonus Gift Suggestions:
A Good Hot or Cold Pack
Both heat and cold can temporarily change the way that pain signals travel along the neural pathway to be recognized by the brain. Cold is great for acute inflammation while heat can be good for more chronic pain, particularly a nervy type of pain.
Download an App or Subscribe to a Program
Head Space, Breathe 2 Relax, Desk-Yogi, Stretch Break programs – there are many free and paid apps and subscriptions that can provide guidance in relaxation techniques, meditation and mindfulness programs, deep breathing techniques and stretching programs and stretches that will help reduce muscular stress and tension.
Enjoy your Thanksgiving break. Happy shopping! Marji