It may seem hard to believe, considering that you use your hands and wrists to do almost everything, but some of the most common wrist injuries are caused by overuse and repetitive motion. Dr. Sanj Kakar, a Mayo Clinic orthopedic hand and wrist surgeon, says you have to get creative to avoid overuse injuries from activities that are hard to avoid.

It can happen while doing the simplest of activities.

“Holding a laptop, typing, texting, things like that,” Dr. Kakar says.

It’s an injury from overuse, and Dr. Kakar sees it all the time.

Overuse injuries are very common in the hand and wrist, and what we’re talking about primarily are tendon problems,” he says.

The tendons are like ropes that help you move your fingers.

“So every time they move their wrist, going into what we call ‘ulnar deviation’ or pointing their thumb down, they get exquisite pain in this area,” Dr. Kakar says.

You should try to cut back on doing the repetitive activity.

“Therapy helps,” Dr. Kakar says. “Therapies can [include] ultrasound to calm this area down, and sometimes a splint can help.”

If things still get worse …

“… sometimes we need to do a corticosteroid injection to decrease inflammation,” Dr. Kakar says. “And most of the times, it gets better. But sometimes we need to do surgery.”

But as tough as it can be, Dr. Kakar says the best thing to do is to try and prevent these injuries.

“When we have to think creatively of using, for example, voice-activated software to decrease the amount of texting, for example, or typing, [things can improve,]” Dr. Kakar says.