Too Much Texting Causing Real Pain in the Thumb

DES MOINES, Iowa – “Texting thumb” is a term people use when he or she believes pain in the area is caused by excessive use of a cellular phone.

Unity Point Occupational Therapist Amy Hegvik said to compare it to “writer’s cramp.”

“With our hands, we use them all day long. So, when you start using something like your thumb, you start using it over and over in a specific pattern it can cause pain. We have different structures in our hands, tenants, ligaments, muscles, even like writers cramp. When we did a lot of writing when we were in school people complained of writers cramp and the muscles kind of tightening up,” Hegvik said.

Hegvik said the pain is caused by repetitive use from the ligaments and muscles, which create the pain.

However, texting is not the sole cause from the pain.

“I’ve heard about people talk about texting thumb, but I think that is just what people say. There really is no diagnosis. I’ve never had a doctor send me a patient with texting thumb. So sometimes we will just get hand or rest pain,” Hegvik said.

Hegvik said if people are experiencing pain to put heat on the spot, massage the area and rest it.