Experts warn, WhatsApp and Facebook addiction can damage your fingers and hands

Experts warn, WhatsApp and Facebook addiction can damage your fingers and hands

New Delhi (ISJ) -�� From teenagers to office-goers to older people are all now addicted to WhatsApp or Facebook on smart phones. But experts warn, excessive use of these smart mobile applications could lead to wrist and finger joint pain, arthritis and repetitive stress injuries to your hands, arms and back, warn orthopaedic experts.

?Now a days, young people are constantly using smart phones and tablets for texting, which has led to an increase over the past few years in the number of people complaining of aches and pains in their fingers, thumbs and hands. This pain and stiffness may be the result of a Repetitive Stress Injury (RSI), which occurs when the same motion is repeated over and over again, for a long period of time, causing inflammation in the ligaments and tendons of joints,? warned Dr. Raju Vaishya, President of Arthritis Care Foundation (AFC) and Senior Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at Indraprastha Apollo Hospitals, New Delhi.

Those who indulge in too much texting on social media gamming on smart phones and tablets can suffer from wrist and finger joint pain and sometimes crippling arthritis of fingers. Longer duration of gamming and texting can cause wrist and finger joint pain. In the age group of young children, longer use of gaming devices is associated with more pain, said Dr. Ashwani Maichand, Senior Consultant� and Director of �Institute of Bone & Joint (MGS Hospital), New Delhi.

According to Dr. Rahul Gupta, Senior Neuro and Spine Surgeon, Fortis Hospital, Repetitive Stress Injuries can result from recurrent large or small movements that affect joints, muscles, tendons, and nerves. For example, people who frequently use their thumbs to type text messages on cell phones sometimes develop radial styloid tenosynovitis (also called De Quervain syndrome, BlackBerry thumb or texting thumb), a painful affliction that involves the tendons that move the thumb. Although the causal link isn't as well established as in patients who suffer from pain from prolonged desktop keyboard use, there's little doubt that overzealous texting can cause debilitating pain.

Dr. Vaishya said most people use touch screen in unnatural and wrong postures. Stress related injuries can also occur when people use their bodies in ways that induce physical stress, such as tilting their hands too far inward or outward while tapping or putting force on their wrists while typing. Carpal tunnel syndrome, perhaps the best-known disease in this category, results from pressure on the median nerve in the wrist.

Dr. Rahul Gupta said your neck and the cervical spine that supports it are highly susceptible to poor posture, which can compress or stretch on the nerves that exit the spinal cord. Resist the temptation to bend your neck forward or backward and especially avoid turning your head or tilting it to one side or another for prolonged periods. Take frequent breaks, and if you feel any pain, numbness, or tingling, stop what you're doing immediately and find a more comfortable position.

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