10 Things That May Have Helped Me Not Have Wrist Pain
Published on October 9, 2023 by Noah Bradley
I used to struggle with wrist pain. My right wrist was inflexible, weak, and prone to overuse pain.
But now it’s a lot better. There are a number of things I do for good wrist-health. I don’t know which of these helps the most and which are completely useless, but here you go:
- I never sleep with a clenched fist. I think I saw a thing online for drummers when I was very young that suggested sleeping with straight-ish fingers. So I’ve done that. To this day I will make a point of always keeping my fingers fairly straight. I just googled this and couldn’t find much about it, but I did see that a lot of people sell hand braces to sleep in to prevent you from clenching into a fist. So maybe it’s a thing.
- I stretch. Pretty much anytime I feel like fidgeting, I’ll stretch my forearms. Sometimes people will ask me what’s wrong with my wrist. Nothing. Totally fine. I just do these stretches throughout the day, without thinking about it. I found an image of basically the stretches I do and attached it below.
- Strengthen it. Weak things are easily injured. Strong things are fairly durable. One of the things that cured some persistent wrist pain a few years back was not resting it or heat or compression or anything. It was actually doing more with it. Building the muscles in the forearm to better support it.
- Being careful with how I lift. A lot of people lift (benching, for instance) with their wrists totally extended. I can’t do that at all, it hurts. So I’m sure to keep my wrists aligned with my arm. Think of how you’d punch someone. Keep that alignment strong and you’ll probably be safer.
- Stop deathgripping things. Too many people grip their pen/stylus/brush like their life depends on it. Chill. Relax a bit. If you just can’t seem to do that, try some of the weird alternate grips that are out there. Variety is good.
- Lots of breaks. ADD is great for encouraging this.
- Compression sleeve. I don’t know if it’s a complete placebo, but I like wearing it sometimes. I use it when I paint sometimes and it serves a similar purpose to those weird two-finger gloves that you see artists wear. That is, keeping my wrist from sticking to the screen.
- Cold therapy. This one is rare but if it really does feel painful I’ll dunk my hand/wrist in a bowl of ice water for a few minutes.
- Fish oil. Every day. Supposed to help with joints. Probably one of the better researched supplements you can take.
- If your computer setup is causing discomfort, fix it. Get a good chair, an ergonomic keyboard, a better mouse. If you’re going to spend significant time at a computer, don’t actively hurt yourself.