Beware! Excessive Texting Can Lead To Smartphone Thumb – Kids Are Not Able To Hold A Pen Anymore

Termed as 'Smartphone Thumb', this condition is caused by excessive smartphone usage.

Smartphone Thumb is a serious issue among children
Smartphone Thumb is a serious issue among children

Gone are the days when people sent letters to communicate – now, its all about texting. But if you are a serial texter, beware! You might have a condition of ‘Smartphone Thumb,’ a condition where a person may not be able to use the thumb to its fullest capacity due to excessive use of smartphones, texting specifically.

What is the Smartphone Thumb?

Doctors have named this condition as a ‘Smartphone Thumb’ as this can be seen in people who use smartphones and text excessively. In medical terms, this condition is called as Tendinitis, which means inflammation or irritation of a tendon, a thick cord that attaches bone with muscle.

The number of people coming in to consult a doctor in such cases has seen a drastic increase. Children and young adults come in with complaints of inability to hold a pen at a time when exams are around the corner.

Severe pain in the wrist and tenderness in the thumb are some prominent symptoms of this.

Young Preys of Tendinitis

Siddhanth, age 15, studying in Class 10th, is set to appear for his board exams next month. But a huge problem has arisen with exams so close, and no, it’s not studies or revisions – Siddhanth is actually struggling to hold a pen in his hands!

Another case is reported by a Shambhavi Gupta, who is the mother of a Class 9 student from Mysuru. Her daughter repeatedly complaints about her hand hurting continuously and her inability to hold a pen. Also, the skin around her thumb has become numb.

On diagnosis, orthopaedic experts tracked her mobile phone usage and concluded that her complaints had risen from overuse of smartphones.

Experts’ Opinions

If a child uses a smartphone for long periods of time, there is a strong possibility that their handwriting will suffer. As per Handwriting expert, Neetu P, “The movements that one’s thumbs have to make while texting require force, and this abnormal thumb bone movement could cause pain, besides the children’s handwriting going for a toss, or posing writing difficulties.”

Easy Remedies to Cure/Prevent the Smartphone Thumb

  • Take care of your wrists by regular exercise of wrists and fingers.
  • Avoid bending your wrists for long sessions of smartphone usage.
  • Use your smartphone in limits. If you notice your child uses a smartphone excessively, try and limit the phone usage to a pre-decided timing.
  • Take regular breaks from using smartphones. Avoid using your smartphone for a long and continuous period of time.
  • Make sure you adopt the correct posture while using your smartphone.

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