7 Causes of Wrist Pain You Should Never Ignore


The prevalence of smartphones and computer-focused work has prompted more people to feel pain in the wrists. Our wrist is primarily made up of a collection of small bones and is wrapped around in very little protective tissue. It’s not a surprise that many people complain about wrist pain. If there’s one thing that you should remember is that wrist pain should not be ignored. This is because there could be an underlying issue causing it, and the more you ignore it, the more likely it might get worse. There are so many factors that can lead to wrist pain, and because of that, diagnosing the exact cause of your wrist pain can be difficult. To get relief from wrist pain, you’ll need to see your doctor and determine what is causing it and take steps to prevent it from happening again.

Not all pain in the wrist is a cause for panic and medical treatment. However, if you see swelling and the pain is unbearable, then it’s time to visit your pain specialist.

Causes of Wrist Pain You Should Never Ignore

Every day, we rely on our hands to function, and if you feel pain in the wrist, then it might impede your ability to perform daily activities. Wrist pain can happen for many reasons, from accidents to sudden injuries. It can also be because of a chronic condition. Regardless of its cause, it would be best if you took care of your wrist. Here are seven causes of wrist pain that you should never ignore.

  1. Repetitive Stress

    When you perform an activity for long periods, it can cause inflammation around the tissues of the joints and can cause stress fractures. Sports such as tennis or golf, where you have to use your wrist extensively, can cause wrist pain. To protect your wrist, you can wear wrist splints. As much as possible, you should perform wrist exercises to loosen up your joints in the wrists before you use them. Furthermore, take a break often when performing any activity that causes you to use your wrist too much.

  2. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

    According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) occurs when the median nerve runs from the forearm into the palm and becomes pressed or squeezed at the wrist. This is common for people who do much typing in their computers or laptops because they have their wrists in awkward positions. If you do a lot of computer-focused tasks that involve typing, position your hands properly on the keyboard. By doing this, you’re lessening the pressure on the nerves in your wrist, and thus preventing carpal tunnel syndrome.

  3. Rheumatoid Arthritis

    According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Rheumatoid arthritis, or RA, is an autoimmune and inflammatory disease, which means that your immune system attacks healthy cells in your body by mistake, causing inflammation (painful swelling) in the affected parts of the body. It mainly affects the joints in the hands, wrists, and knees. This condition may cause you to limit your activities. There is no cure for rheumatoid arthritis, but through medication and physiotherapy, rheumatoid arthritis can be manageable.

  4. Sudden Accidents

    Sudden accidents such as falling on your hand while it is stretched can cause fractures, strains, and sprains. A fall can cause much pain, and you might not be able to enjoy things for some time. Because accidents can happen anywhere, it’s essential always to be mindful of your surroundings.

  5. Ganglion Cysts

    The American Society for Surgery of the Hand defined ganglion cyst as a lump around the hand and wrist that occurs adjacent to joints or tendons. Most of the time, it doesn’t need treatment. However, there can be instances where having ganglion cysts can be painful. During these times, the pain that you are experiencing can restrict your ability to move your wrists. If you feel severe pain, then you should immediately seek medical attention so that the doctor can determine the course of treatment that is needed.

  6. Osteoarthritis

    According to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (ASSH), osteoarthritis is a joint disease in which the tissues in the joint break down over time. Osteoarthritis in the wrist occurs when there has been an injury to the wrist in the past. A person suffering from this condition may experience a flare-up and may be unable to complete a task. If you’re experiencing osteoarthritis, it is best to consult your physician to prescribe a medication that can help relieve the pain.

  7. Kienbock’s Disease

    The ASSH defined Kienbock’s disease as a condition in which the lunate bone, one of eight small bones in the wrist, loses its blood supply, leading to the bone’s death. This condition mostly affects the young adult population. The diagnosis of Kienbock’s disease can often be made by reviewing your history, performing a physical examination, and taking x-rays. To prevent this disorder, you need to have your wrist in the proper position when performing tasks.


Every day, we need our wrists to function properly, and if you feel pain in your wrists, it is crucial to have a doctor check it out. The earlier the doctor can determine the cause of the pain, the easier it is to deal with it. Dr. Ronak Patel is a double board-certified anesthesiologist and pain management specialist specializing in the treatment of back pain, neck pain, joint pain, facial pain, and cancer-related pain. He can help you develop a treatment plan for your wrist pain. Schedule a consultation to learn more.