Frequent mouse usage
Q: My index finger of the right hand pains severely due to frequent use of mouse. I have changed several types of mouse. Can you suggest anything to improve it?
A:You have neglected your problem for a very long time. The mouse strains the hand by forcing repetitive use of one finger and in awkward position in which users tend to grip the mouse too hard, often with wrist cocked. Unfortunately it is difficult to find a mouse that can be used for extended periods of time. Changing the mouse does not help in any way to help the strain. You could try the following:- 1. You could use ice packs on your hand. 2. At the start of each computer session, do the following exercises: a) Extend and stretch both wrists and fingers acutely as if they are in handstand position. Hold for a count of 5. b) Make a tight fist with both hands. Then bend both wrists down while keeping the fist. Hold for a count of 5. 3. Place your mouse in close proximity to your keyboard to avoid reaching up or over to use it. Avoid gripping or squeezing the mouse. 4. Your wrist angle should be in a neutral position for using the mouse, not overly flexed or extended. A wrist rest can keep the hand in a neutral position. Your elbow angle should be at a right angle (90 degrees) to your upper arm so that you don't bend your wrist sideways to use the mouse. 5. Above all, you should take care of your posture at the computer. 6. Take frequent breaks at the computer. 7. If pain is unbearable, stop immediately. 8. You can go to a physiotherapy clinic for taking ultrasound under water for about 4 to 5 sessions. If it helps you take it for another week. 9. You could try soft flex computer gloves. Measure the circumference of your wrist for size. If you cannot get them, you could ask your therapist to help you with a dynamic splint for the hand. 10. If you do not get any relief from these measures, you will have to see an orthopedist.