What are the Different Types of Wrist Treatment?

Erin J. Hill
Erin J. Hill
A woman wearing a wrist brace.
A woman wearing a wrist brace.

There are many different types of wrist treatment that may be available to patients for an array of conditions or injuries. The type of treatment needed will likely depend on the issues at hand. For instance, an arthritis patient will likely need some sort of medication to alleviate inflammation and pain, while someone with an injury may do better with a combination of pain reliever and a wrist brace or wrap. Other different types of wrist treatment include physical therapy, surgery, and wrist exercises.

Wrapping a wrist is a type of treatment that might be best for some injuries.
Wrapping a wrist is a type of treatment that might be best for some injuries.

One of the most common of the different types of wrist treatment is the use of prescription or over the counter medications. Most wrist injuries or conditions cause some level of pain, so medication may be given to alleviate enough discomfort to make the healing process easier. This is especially important if physical therapy or exercises will be needed. To maintain some use of the wrist for these activities, a milder pain reliever may be used.

X-rays might be needed to rule out serious injuries of the wrist.
X-rays might be needed to rule out serious injuries of the wrist.

Physical therapy is generally reserved for extreme cases in which the wrist has become severely injured or in those with conditions which require surgery. The process of therapy is meant to help patients learn or re-learn ways to move the joint and to strengthen the area so prevent further damage. Patients may undergo physical therapy after surgery or after an injury has been given sufficient time to heal.

Most wrist injuries cause some level of pain or discomfort.
Most wrist injuries cause some level of pain or discomfort.

In most cases, the different types of wrist treatment used will be mild and can be done at home or as an outpatient procedure. Often, a wrist brace or bandage will be applied after an injury or when a painful condition flares up to prevent the joint from being moved excessively. This will allow the area to heal more completely and may help prevent a recurrence of injury later on. Bandages and mild pain relievers can be purchased at most pharmacies for injuries that are mild.

Acupuncture may be useful in treating wrist pain.
Acupuncture may be useful in treating wrist pain.

Patients should keep in mind that most mild injuries heal within a few days. If the wrist remains painful to move, swollen, or stiff for longer than this, it may be best to see a physician to rule out a more severe injury. In cases where the wrist cannot be moved at all or in a certain direction or if it becomes red, blue, or painful to the touch, a doctor should be notified and x-rays should be taken to rule out a break or other serious injury.

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    • A woman wearing a wrist brace.
      A woman wearing a wrist brace.
    • Wrapping a wrist is a type of treatment that might be best for some injuries.
      Wrapping a wrist is a type of treatment that might be best for some injuries.
    • X-rays might be needed to rule out serious injuries of the wrist.
      X-rays might be needed to rule out serious injuries of the wrist.
    • Most wrist injuries cause some level of pain or discomfort.
      Most wrist injuries cause some level of pain or discomfort.
    • Acupuncture may be useful in treating wrist pain.
      Acupuncture may be useful in treating wrist pain.