Hand pain that prevents you from using it can bring your busy day to a screeching halt. Unfortunately, there are many reasons why your hand may be hurting. Some causes are minor, resolving on their own with rest, while others are more serious, requiring specialist care and treatment.
If you are experiencing hand pain, it can be difficult to make a judgment call on when to see a doctor. Most patients attempt to self-treat first. Here are some tips on what to do if you experience hand pain:
The first thing you should do if your hand is hurting is to stop what you are doing. Are you typing? Texting? Scrubbing dishes? Think about what you use your hands for and try to determine which activity may be causing the symptoms. Pain is a signal from your body that an activity is disrupting it and should be stopped. Don’t try to work through the pain. In most cases, hand pain will get worse if you ignore it. Therefore, take some time to rest and see if your pain goes away. Anti-inflammatories can provide temporary relief. If the pain returns frequently, you should seek medical help.
Hand Pain is Tricky
Diagnosing hand pain is tricky because the hand is a complex structure made up of many tiny components. The pain can come and go, making it easy to ignore. Your hand may hurt with specific activities and not hurt while doing others. When you start feeling better, you may resume activities and then experience a recurrence. So how do you know when you’ve truly recovered? For an accurate diagnosis and a customized treatment plan, it’s best to ask for a referral to a hand specialist.
When To See A Doctor
When it comes to hand pain, do you treat it at home or see a doctor for it? Hand pain is best treated by a specialist if:
- The pain is severe or occurs frequently
- The symptoms interfere with your daily activities, such as household chores or work
- You have to request absences from work and other activities due to symptoms
- Simple activities such as brushing teeth and turning doorknobs become challenging due to symptoms
- There is an obvious deformity in the hand or fingers
- A finger is locked in a bent position
Who To See For Hand Pain
For chronic or persistent hand pain, you are best treated by a specialist of the musculoskeletal system or an orthopedic doctor. Orthopedic doctors can specialize in the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of hand conditions. Most hand conditions may be treated with conservative methods of treatment, however, it’s better to choose a hand surgeon for your care should you need surgery.
Hand Surgeon in San Antonio, TX
Dr. Michael L. Jones is our hand surgeon at the Center for Orthopaedic Surgery and Sports Medicine. He can quickly diagnose the root cause of your symptoms and prescribe treatment that will give you immediate relief from hand pain. Dr. Jones can perform the most advanced, minimally invasive hand surgeries to restore hand function in chronic and complex cases.