Hand surgeon Dr. Mark Ciaglia says that he is seeing more patients 40 years old and younger dealing with painful inflammation and stiffness in their joints.
It is the hours spent each day texting and gaming that are dooming our younger people to develop arthritis early, Ciaglia feels.
“With the advent of texting and video games and excessive use of computers and typing you’re wearing the joints out sooner so we’re actually seeing a shift in the demographics of patients that get arthritis because they’re just wearing their joints out so much sooner,” Ciaglia, who works at Woodlands Center for Specialty Surgery in Texas, said.
Developing arthritis from texting, emailing and playing games has to do with the continuous motion of your fingers, and what is known as repetitive stress syndrome.
Those activities put a lot of strain on joints, tendons and muscles –creating a recipe for painful inflammation and stiff joints.
“At the end of the day it’s a wear and tear how many times are you moving a joint back and forth where the cartilage that covers the bone within the joint,” said Ciaglia.
‘The more often you do this and the more aggressive you are with it the sooner you will develop arthritis-like symptoms.”
Studies have shown that the average teenager now sends some 3,340 text message a month – that is about 50 a day.
A study from the Kaiser Family Foundation found that middle-school and high-school students spend, on average, 95 minutes of the day texting.
“One of the most common places where we see arthritis from repetitive hand use is at the base of the thumb,”said Dr. Nanavat, Kaiser Family Foundations’s
“This type of injury may cause shooting pain that radiates up the forearm.”
Dr. Ciaglia understands that it is impossible for us to stop moving our fingers, but says “all good things in moderation.”
Source: Stacy Liberatore