Been pounding away at the computer keyboard?
It's more than a cliche.
U. S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) researchers in the 1990s realized that most people wham the computer keyboard with more force than necessary. A person's fingers, they suspected, must take a real beating, exerting hundreds of pounds of force daily.
OSHA's study results surprised the researchers. It found that a typist's fingers may exert 25 tons of force at the keyboard each day.
Incorrect keyboard use is one of the leading causes of computer-associated repetitive stress injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome. The condition involves numbness and pain in the hands.
These injuries usually involve damage to tendons, ligaments, and other structures in the hands, wrists, and arms. They result from overuse, doing the same movements - banging away at the keyboard, for instance - for long periods day after day.
Keyboard injuries can cause pain in the elbows, shoulders, or neck, areas that most people don't even associate with typing. They take years to develop. Once symptoms appear, you've often got them for life.
Prevention with proper keyboard use is the best approach.
Tips from OSHA and other sources:
Finally, rest often. When fatigue sets in during typing, the wrists bend into an unhealthy position. Rest and stretch to relieve fatigue.
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