Do you know you can get a painful disorder because of using smartphone? The condition is known as 'smartphone thumb' which is caused due to repetitive typing movements which can trigger arthritis or tendinitis in the thumb.
Doctors say arthritis and tendinitis result from inflammation of the tissues at joints, causing pain and hampering the ability of the joints to move smoothly and easily. Earlier, this condition was detected only in factory workers. But over the years, more people have started complaining about pain in their thumb.
"One of the hypotheses is that the joints get loose and lax, and because of that the bones move differently than they would in a normal situation," says Kristin Zhao from the Mayo Clinic in the US.
The 'smartphone thumb' has been analysed by researchers for the last seven years.
Zhao explains that the movements made by our thumb while we hold the phone are awkward. "It's also a movement that requires some force through the thumbs. It's not just free movement in space," she added.
In 2010, researchers had started using a dynamic imaging technique to observe and understand the normal bone movement of healthy patients. They use the recorded data to compare it with movements that are not normal.
"Our hypothesis is that abnormal motion of bones in the thumb could be causing pain onset and eventual osteoarthritis," Zhao was quoted as saying by CBS Minnesota.
Excessive texting could also lead to thumb arthritis. Doctors advise that to keep this problem at bay, one should text using the forefinger or use voice to dictate the text message.
They also advise carrying out stretching exercises with fingers and wrist to prevent this agonising condition.