What are Wrist Overuse Injuries?

22 August 2017

Do you experience pain and discomfort when you undergo your regular day-to-day activities? Are you finding it hard to perform your signature tennis serve or golf swing? It could well be that you are suffering from one of many wrist overuse injuries, which can really get in the way of living your life. Here at Wrist Supports, we have put together a small guide on the most common wrist overuse injuries.

What are Wrist Overuse Injuries?

Wrist overuse injuries are conditions that result from putting excess strain or pressure on the wrist. They usually occur when an individual causes damage to the issue and joints through repetitive motions, such as practising sports, doing assembly work or even pulling weeds from the garden. They make up for more than half of sport-related injuries, and result in a huge loss of work days year on year.

What are Common Wrist Overuse Conditions?

There are lots of different injuries that fall under wrist overuse conditions, and we have listed some of the most common ones below:

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) is a common arm, wrist and hand condition that causes numbness, tingling, pain and other sensations in the affected area. It occurs when the median nerve gets trapped, usually due to repetitive motion, such as twisting and turning or typing repetitively on a keyboard. If left untreated, sufferers of CTS will continue to experience mild to severe tingling or numbness in the thumb, index and middle fingers until the hand weakens. In more extreme cases, surgery is required to release the trapped median nerve.


Tendonitis is charactarised by the inflammation of a tendon, a thick cord that attaches a muscle to a bone. It can occur in any tendon in the body, however tendonitis of the wrist and arm is common among competitive tennis, golf and basketball players due to the demand that is placed on their wrists. Pain is usually described as a dull ache, and some may experience tenderness or mild swelling in the affected area. Self-care measures such as rest and medication usually suffice, with surgical intervention only required if the tendonitis leads to the rupture of a tendon.

De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis

De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis is an irritation of the tendons that lead from the wrist to the thumb. Repetitive movements of the thumb and wrist, such as using a screwdriver, excessive video game playing, carrying shopping bags or even frequently carrying heavy items can all contribute to the development of De Quervain's Tenosynovitis. Luckily, it is very easily treatable, with rest and painkillers significantly reducing pain and discomfort.


Bursitis is a painful condition that is defined as the swelling of a small, fluid-filled sac called a bursa. Bursas are usually found over the joints and act as a cushion between tendons and bones. Repetitive motion through work or hobbies, such as gardening, tennis, sewing and video games, can contribute to excess fluid build up, causing the bursa to swell and present a painful and unsightly lump.  Bursitis is easily treated at home with ice packs and anti-inflammatory painkillers.

How to Avoid Wrist Overuse Injuries

Depending on what specific conditions have been diagnosed for certain injuries, many doctors will advise patients certain techniques to avoid overuse injuries from happening again. Taking frequent breaks from repetitive activities, as well as doing simple wrist stretches and exercises, are some of the most recommended suggestions for prevention, as well as maybe using specialist equipment or wearing protective gear such as a wrist brace.

Here at Wrist Supports, we have a large range of wrist braces and supports to help you down the road to recovery, or to aid in prevention of wrist overuse injuries. Click the link below to browse our wide range of supports.

Have you ever had a wrist overuse injury? Reach out to us in the comments below, or let us know on Facebook or Twitter.

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