3 factors that can cause a worker’s carpal tunnel syndrome

On Behalf of | Feb 7, 2024 | Workplace Injuries

Despite being one of the most common occupational conditions in the U.S., carpal tunnel syndrome does not receive the respect it should. People often fail to understand how debilitating carpal tunnel syndrome can be until they develop it personally.

Workers who cannot comfortably use their arms, hands and wrists may find that they can’t perform very many job functions at all. Certain job responsibilities have a stronger association with carpal tunnel syndrome than others.

Depending on the type of job someone performs and how long they keep a particular role, their daily job responsibilities could drastically increase the likelihood of them developing carpal tunnel syndrome. What factors influence the risk of carpal tunnel syndrome and the severity of the condition?

How long someone must work with their hands

The more time someone spends performing repetitive job tasks, the greater their overall chances of developing carpal tunnel syndrome. If someone only types sporadically throughout a standard workday, their chance of developing carpal tunnel syndrome is not particularly high. However, if someone must spend their entire shift typing, gripping a phone or handling a tool, then their chances of carpal tunnel syndrome developing increase. The longer someone remains in a role that puts hours of pressure on their hands, wrists and forearms, the greater the potential of them developing carpal tunnel syndrome.

How much pressure job responsibilities require

It is far more demanding for someone to press keys firmly or grip tools securely than it is for them to lightly tap. The more pressure someone applies while repetitively using their hands and arms, the greater the chances of them eventually developing carpal tunnel syndrome. Workers who reduce the amount of pressure used can sometimes protect themselves from developing symptoms or having their symptoms worsen.

Whether someone frequently experiences vibration

Vibration exposure is a serious job safety risk that people overlook. Holding on to a shaking steering wheel or a vibrating tool puts a lot more pressure on the hands and forearms than just gripping a pencil or typing.

Those who experience frequent and intense vibration in their hands and forearms may suffer an elevated risk of eventually developing carpal tunnel syndrome. Carpal tunnel syndrome could force someone to change professions and necessitate regular medical intervention. Ultimately, connecting certain job functions to work-acquired medical conditions may help people pursue the benefits they need for a job-related health condition.