Posts Tagged ‘broken thumb’:

Don’t Let a Thumb Injury Keep You on the Sidelines!

Thumb Injury Sidelines

Thumb Injury Have You on the Sidelines?

It’s so easy to feel sidelined after sustaining a thumb injury – sidelined from your daily tasks and your favorite activities. A thumb injury can impact many things you normally do each day.

The good news is that there are ways to minimize the impact of a thumb injury. Take the necessary steps to recover so that you can get off the sidelines and back to your life.

Get Rest – How Long Does a Thumb Injury Take to Heal?

  • The hardest thing, but easily the most important thing for you to do when you’re recovering from any hand or wrist injury, is to let the injured area rest. Like with any injury, the healing time will vary depending on which thumb injury you have and how severe the injury is.
  • A mild thumb sprain may only need a few weeks to recuperate while a broken thumb may take up to a few months to heal properly.
  • The good news is that many of the mild to moderate thumb injuries no longer call for a cast in order to heal, but most patients find that using a wrist brace is enough to keep their thumb immobile while they heal without the inconvenience and bulk of a standard plaster cast.

Get Moving Sooner – What Can You Do to Heal Faster?

  • Give yourself at least 2 weeks to let the injury rest, applying cold compresses as needed to help with the swelling and discomfort.
  • This should give you a huge head start on healing: letting your tendons, ligaments, bones, and nerve endings heal and get ready to let you do all the activities you have been waiting to do.
  • It may seem frustrating at times, but after these two weeks are up, you should be able to resume doing small tasks, and over the course of another two to three weeks, you should be able to get back to nearly all of the things you’ve been sidelined from doing.

Get the Best Results – How Important is the Healing Time?

  • While it’s common for my patients to get frustrated while healing, this time is needed to let the bones properly align, let the tendons and ligaments mend, and just give the area the time it needs to recover.
  • After all, the last thing you want is to have the area not heal properly and require more down time from you to facilitate the healing process.

So take these simple tips and get off the sidelines and back to your life as quickly as possible.

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Thumb Injury Making You All Thumbs?

Thumb Injury 101

A thumb injury is difficult to recover from. It is interesting to not how much we use our hands/thumbs each day. From tasks big to small, we don’t even think about the role our thumbs play. Our thumbs give us the ability to grasp objects. They allow us to drive a car. Our thumbs help us sign our name. The list of tasks we do thanks to our thumbs is virtually endless.

Did you know?

  • Did you know that 1 in 6 injuries treated in the E.R. are injuries to the hand or wrist including the thumb?
  • Thumb injuries can and do vary.
  • No one is really immune to this injury. Athletes and active people can sustain a thumb injury.
  • A jammed thumb or a thumb sprain happens when the thumb is bent back. This can happen when you brace yourself from a fall. It can also occur when the thumb is struck by a solid object.
  • A thumb strain is more often found in people that do repetitive motion. This occurs over an extended period of time.
  • A broken thumb is often caused by a closed fist striking a hard, immovable object.
  • Gamekeeper’s Thumb is an injury where the UCL is torn. This happens at the base of the thumb. This injury is named for a common sport’s injury. The gamekeepers often suffered from this injury at the time it was medically discovered. Now, it is very common among skiers. This is due to how they use/grip their hands.
  • Virtually anyone can suffer from a thumb injury. The bones in the wrist and hand are so fragile. It’s a wonder there aren’t injuries to the thumb more often.

Did You Know – Part 2?

A few basic steps can have you feeling better after a thumb injury. Much of the healing is basic common sense. Still, it never hurts to brush up on basic first aid. This will help you manage a thumb injury.

  • First – Swelling will be the most noticeable and problematic issue to deal with. If you have any type of thumb injury, treating the swelling should be your first priority. Ice the swollen area for 15-20 minutes every hour, until you can see the swelling go down.
  • Second – Take an over-the-counter pain reliever to help manage the pain.
  • Third – See a doctor. This will ensure that there aren’t any broken bones or fractures.
  • Fourth and final tip – Get a good wrist brace with thumb support (thumb spica), to help speed the healing.

If not properly treated, thumb injuries can often lead to early onset arthritis. It’s best to treat any thumb injury as soon as possible. Follow all of the treatment options prescribed by your physician. Now, you aren’t all thumbs but you are thumb injury savvy!

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Broken Thumb & A-Rod: How Athletes Cope

Broken Thumb

ARod's Broken ThumbFor a baseball player, your arms and hands are essential tools. In fact, a broken thumb injury can be a game stopper. This is exactly what happened to New York Yankees’ star, Alex Rodriquez. His thumb was so sore that it was hurting his performance. He had to have an MRI done to see if it was broken.

Lucky for him, the test result was negative. He did not have a broken bone. Instead, he was diagnosed with a sprained thumb. However, it  may still require constant monitoring and regular trips to the doctor’s clinic.

During all this time, A-Rod was out of the lineup for their games agains Oakland and maybe longer. This thumb injury meant lost play time for A-Rod. It also meant a change in the team’s lineup. I am sure that the coaches had questions.

How Common is a Broken Thumb?

  • Athletes who regularly use their arms, especially their fingers, usually suffer a sprained thumb from time-to-time. This is mainly due to constant wear and tear on the area.
  • In some cases, it happens with a high-impact crash on something hard.

How is a Thumb Injury Diagnosed?

  • Diagnosing a sprained thumb is easy.
  • Imaging studies, such as an X-ray and MRI, can also be done to identify other problems in the area such as a broken bone.
  • With this done, treatment can begin.

How is a Thumb Injury Treated?

  • The ligament that supports the grasp and pinch mechanism of the arms becomes torn which causes severe pain and temporary disability.
  • If a partial tear is present, immobilizing the thumb joint using a splint or a bandage is the best option until the thumb heals.
  • Recovery will probably take about four-to-five weeks for complete recovery.
  • If the ligament is found wholly torn, surgery is the only option for treatment.
  • Surgery will involve the ligament being positioned back or removed according to the degree of injury.
  • After surgery, a cast or a splint is applied to the arm that may take about eight weeks to recover.

How Can a Thumb Injury be Prevented?

  • There is not much you can do to prevent thumb sprains, especially for baseball stars who constantly use the same arm to pitch or hit a bat.
  • Nevertheless, one proven effective way to reduce swelling and avoid sprain is to apply ice to the thumb after a training or game.
  • In addition, strength of the hand muscles must be increased while maintaining the flexibility of the joints to stay away from breaking the thumb.
  • You can prevent recurrence of the injury by allowing the sprained thumb to heal thoroughly before returning to a game or practice.
  • Hand exercises should be performed regularly to maintain the strength and stability of the injured thumb.

For the weeks to follow, the Yankees may have to put up a good game without A-Rod. The injury may be something minor but a broken thumb can be incapacitating to an athlete who depends so much on his arms and hands.

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