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How Do I Know If I Have Trigger Finger and What Can I Do?

Posted on Apr 09, 2014 at

Do you have to use your hands to straighten out or relax your fingers? If you notice that your fingers become sore or tense up then there is a good chance that you have trigger finger. This is a condition that involves the fingers or thumb to lock into place when bent. Don’t ignore it and put yourself through more pain. Do something about it and get the proper trigger finger treatment that you need to get your hands back to normal.

According to research by WebMD, trigger finger is caused by a repeated movement or strong uses of the finger or thumb. Squeezing and holding a power drill or holding a dumbbell for an extensive period of time can cause trigger finger. A physical examination of the hand and fingers will be observed by your doctor to determine what caused it. Patients with gout, diabetes and arthritis may also suffer from trigger finger.


The symptoms include locking of a thumb or finger in a bent position and when the finger straightens, it may snap and is accompanied by finger joint pain. One of the symptoms of trigger finger is soreness at the base of the finger or thumb. When the soreness progresses, another symptom develops that involves a painful clicking or snapping while bending or straightening the finger. It may force you to avoid bending it to avoid pain. In some instances, the thumb or finger can be locked in a bent position and needs to gently be straightened out with the other hand. Normally the tendons glide easily, but with trigger finger the tendon becomes inflamed which makes it difficult and painful for the finger to straighten. Trigger finger is common in women than men and typically range in people over 30 years old.

What to do

A medical surgeon may provide you with a splint or medication may be able to help relieve the pain and stress, but you need to restrict the movement of the joint in order to fully recover. In some cases a steroid injection may be needed to decrease inflammation. If there are still no signs of improvement then surgery would be the last option to consider in order to properly release the tendon and restore movement to the finger.


Depending on how bad the case is it may be anywhere from two to six weeks. In more severe cases the patient may need to rest for six to eight weeks. Only then after rest and time you will be able to get full range of motion without pain and tension.


It is best to avoid overusing your thumb and fingers. A job that requires frequent use of your hands may not allow you to stop use, but there are precautions that can be taken. Adjust your work so that it limits the use of joints. Remember, like your mind, your joints need to relax every once in a while too. Alternate your activities when possible get your other muscles in use and allow some down time to give your fingers a break. It’s also recommended to rest frequently throughout the day, give your body a chance to rebuild, stretch and relax your fingers and move your body around to keep your blood flowing.

Pay attention to what your fingers are telling you. If you’re in pain or experience unfamiliar tension while making a fist, then see your doctor. It’s unfair to limit yourself of fun or work activities when the pain is just too grueling to cope with. After you get the treatment you need, you’ll see that your hands will have regained its strength and you can go on to enjoy your life again, pain and worry free.

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