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Learn About How Arthritis Pain Affects Hands and How to Treat It

arthritis pain in hands

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Take a moment to think about all the different activities you take part in every day where you’d be unable to do them without your hands. And let’s also remember that if you’re typing all day at work or are a musician of any sort you will also be relying on your hands and fingers to be doing whatever it is you need to do. Having dexterity in our hands and fingers is important, and people with rheumatoid arthritis have to deal with pain and fingers and hands that don’t work as well as they used to. Arthritis pain in hands and worsening dexterity can be addressed with a medication like Celebrex.

Is arthritis pain in hands even more distressing for ambidextrous people? Being just as good with either hand is definitely a positive no matter what you’re doing with them. Most people are right-handed, and estimates are that only 10 to 12% of the population is left-handed. Left-handed pitchers in baseball always have added value based on that fact exclusively, and there are other examples of where it’s good to be a lefty. But all that aside it is unfortunate that the hands are often where rheumatoid arthritis affects people most and it’s a problem even if you’re only strong with one of them.

All arthritis has its roots in inflammation, and the constant activity for tissues in the hands and nerve impulses being passed down to them means the inflammatory response is strengthened even further. Being an extremity just like feet and toes adds to this too, but the fact that toes are that much further away from the heart is the reason why the pain from gout – another inflammatory condition – is primarily felt in the toes and makes walking or standing up quite the ordeal.

Arthritis and swollen hands can be a reality too, and while arthritis treatment medication can help with swollen hands too, more and more sufferers are also using microwaveable arthritis gloves. They can make a difference although the more limber finger and wrist joints they create are only temporary. Still, using a pair may be a good choice for you if your arthritis pain in hands is really limiting what you’re able to do in a day.

Wrists and Digits

We’ve only talked about rheumatoid arthritis here so far, but osteoarthritis can factor into arthritis pain in hands too and often when the person has severe wrist pain and stiffness it is because of osteoarthritis. Pain in finger joints is more commonly how rheumatoid arthritis and another thing to keep in mind is that wear and tear degeneration on the soft tissues of the hands around the joints will make arthritis pain and stiffness worse.

Of course, that type of wear and tear is common in parts of the body that are often hard at work. As we suggested before, there is no part of your body that is at work as often as your hands are. There are many professions where men can find their hand strength and mobility is compromised when they retire from them, and if they develop the condition then their arthritis pain in hands. One thing that a physiotherapist may recommend for people is to work at improving grip strength. If this is advised for someone who is just beginning to develop arthritis in the hands, then it can help maintain hand dexterity. Unfortunately, it will do nothing to stem the pain of arthritis though.

Not So Good Morning

Many people who have arthritis pain in hands will also have a near equal amount of stiffness, and sometime one hand can be much stiffer than the other. We talked about ambidexterity earlier, but very few people have more than one dominant hand. If it is your dominant hand that is getting arthritis worse, it makes the situation that much more problematic. The pain will often be fairly constant and won’t increase or decrease too much, although using Celebrex will certainly reduce arthritis pain in hands.

The stiffness is a different story, as for many people with rheumatoid arthritis affecting their hands there is such a thing as morning stiffness, where the joint immobility is worse in the morning. It is not as much of an issue with osteoarthritis and that is seen in how long morning stiffness lasts for arthritis sufferers. As far as hands are concerned, people with RA may have increased stiffness and immobility for up to an hour but people with OA may only have tight wrists for 5 to 15 minutes or so.

Hot and cold therapy can be a way to add to the effectiveness of any anti-inflammatory medication you are taking for arthritis pain in hands, and there also exercises a physiotherapist can show you that can be done at home.


IMPORTANT NOTE: The above information is intended to increase awareness of health information and does not suggest treatment or diagnosis. This information is not a substitute for individual medical attention and should not be construed to indicate that use of the drug is safe, appropriate, or effective for you. See your health care professional for medical advice and treatment.


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