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ErgonomicChair.org


5 Surprising Careers That Can Cause Carpal Tunnel

Posted on 3rd Sep 2011 @ 4:53 PM

When you hear about carpal tunnel syndrome, you probably think of office workers: people who type all day long, in cubicles, while sitting in ergonomic chairs, palming special mice, crouched over their keyboard trays and hoping for the best. But apparently, cubicle jockeys aren't the only folks who need to worry about carpal tunnel and other repetitive stress injuries (RSI). Here are five of the most surprising careers that can lead to carpal tunnel.

1. Musician.

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What do musicians have in common with athletes? According to Toronto-based audiologist Dr. Marshall Chasin, they're macho:

"In many ways musicians are as macho — and I mean that in the most negative sense — as baseball players and football players," said Chasin. "They may not be six-foot-eight, but they certainly have that same attitude, that I'm immortal and I can play through an injury."

In practical terms, this means a lot of untreated carpal tunnel and RSI. How do musicians get carpal tunnel? Think of a violinist holding her instrument, and try not to get a twinge in your wrist and neck.

 

2. Gymnast.

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Gymnasts, particularly ones who do handstands, get carpal tunnel like there’s no tomorrow. Weak wrists are often the culprit. Strengthening exercises can help, although in some cases, corticosteroid injections are required. As a last resort, surgery offers relief, but it involves cutting the ligament that compresses the nerve. Ouch!

 

3. Newspaper Delivery Boy/Girl.

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Maybe it's a good thing print is dying, at least if you're in charge of delivering papers. The repetitive motion of flinging all those papers under the porch or onto the roof comes at a price. And unwrapping bundles of papers and loading up delivery vans aren't so great on the wrists, either.

 

4. Hairdresser.

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Doing your hair isn't just wearing out your stylist's patience. It might also be wearing out his wrists. Awkward grips on scissors and styling tools, plus the repetitive act of cutting tiny little snippets of hair over and over again, can add up to wrist pain.

 

5. Housewife/husband.

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Stay-at-home spouses of the world: The next time someone acts like you don't work for a living, point them to this article. It turns out that your occupation is right up there with assembly line workers and computer operators in the list of professions most likely to cause carpal tunnel.


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