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CDT507-3 Safety Talks! a Safety Smart!

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S AFETY T ALKS! Ergonomics

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Is Painful But Preventable


Repeating the same motion over and
over can cause injuries. These
injuries may not be apparent at first,
but in time they can become
disabling.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is one such


repetitive strain injury. It is caused by
repeated motions of the hand and
wrist. Occupations ranging from
computer operator to carpenter are
prone to this type of injury. Take regular short breaks to rest devices are made of leather, plastic
your hands. If possible, organize your and fabric. They also keep you from
Symptoms progress from slight work so you can vary your tasks bending your wrists. For instance,
discomfort to severe pain and inability throughout the shift. keyboard operators wear them to
to use your hands. prevent Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Avoid placing force on your hands, from becoming worse.
The Carpal Tunnel is a passageway particularly when your wrist is bent.
through the wrist which contains a Check with a medical person
nerve. When the bones and tendons Do not allow impact on the palm of promptly if you develop any of the
surrounding this nerve become your hand. A tool such as a symptoms of Carpal Tunnel
damaged, dislocated or swollen, the screwdriver should be long enough so Syndrome. These include numbness
nerve is compressed. This causes it extends beyond the palm of the to the hand or fingers, a burning or
symptoms of tingling, numbness, pain hand. Make sure any impact is tingling sensation and pain.
and weakness in the fingers and distributed through a large part of
hands. your hand, not just the center of your In treating Carpal Tunnel
hand. Syndrome, it is important to eliminate
Often the symptoms are first the action or hand position which is
noticeable because they awaken you Never pound with your hands causing it. The wrist needs rest. A
during the night. They can progress use an appropriate tool instead. doctor may prescribe anti-
until you are unable to continue with inflammatory drugs to reduce the
your work. Make use of devices which help swelling in the tissues surrounding the
you keep your wrists in the correct nerve. Surgery is an option in some
Here are some tips for preventing position. For computer work, wrist severe cases.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: rests and specially shaped keyboards
are available. Certain power and hand Carpal Tunnel Syndrome can cripple
Work with your wrist in a relaxed, tools are made to keep your hands in permanently. Prevent it now rather
straight, neutral position. Try not to the correct position while working. than having to live with it later.
bend your wrist when doing repetitive
tasks. Wrist supports are available. These

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