Excessive Texting May Lead to 'Smartphone Thumb' or Thumb Arthritis

   |  Updated: May 31, 2017 12:52 IST

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Excessive Texting May Lead to 'Smartphone Thumb' or Thumb Arthritis
Highlights
  • Smartphone thumb is a painful condition caused by repetitive texting
  • It may lead to arthritis in the thumb
  • Formally known as tendinitis, the condition was earlier seen in workers

The times we live in, a smartphone is of utmost importance. Sure, it helps us stay connected with a large network of people, but too much of it could also start showing negative implications of one's health and well-being. Ever heard of 'Smartphone Thumb'? Well, it is real, and it is one of the consequences of excessive texting. Doctors have warned that people who spend too much time texting may be at increased risk of having "smartphone thumb", a painful condition caused by repetitive movements of typing that may lead to arthritis in the thumb.



Formally known as tendinitis, the condition was earlier only seen in factory workers. It causes the tendon that bends and flexes the thumb to become inflamed. But with increased use of smartphone for our daily activities, this type of pain has become more common over the years in the US, according to a CBSNews.com report.



"One of the hypotheses is that, you know, the joints get loose and lax, and because of that the bones kind of move differently than they would in a normal situation," Kristin Zhao, a biomedical engineer at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester was quoted as saying by CBS Minnesota.

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"The movements we require our thumbs to make as we hold our phones are awkward. It's also a movement that requires some force through the thumbs. It's not just free movement in space," she explained. "Our hypothesis is that abnormal motion of bones in the thumb could be causing pain onset and eventual osteoarthritis."



The ways to prevent the problem include giving your thumbs a break, using your forefinger sometimes, and doing daily stretching exercises to keep your tendons limber, among others.

Inputs from IANS



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