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More and more young people suffer from osteoarthritis in their hands

More and more young people suffer from osteoarthritis in their hands


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Generation smartphone: Thumbs under pressure: IKK Südwest: More and more young insured people suffer from osteoarthritis in their hands

Osteoarthritis comes in old age, so far this thesis has been consistent. Current figures from the IKK Südwest show that an increasing number of younger people are affected by osteoarthritis in the wrists and fingers. The diagnosis among 21 to 30-year-olds has quintupled at the IKK within four years. One reason may be excessive smartphone use. The ligaments and tendons in the hand are extremely stressed and cause unstable joints.

Swiping, pushing, clicking, typing - the typical hand movements of the "generation smartphone" are usually perfectly mastered even by small children. In adulthood, the strenuous combination of movements often leads to joint diseases in the hand, primarily in the thumb.

Within four years, the total number of IKK-Südwest insured persons between 16 and 65 years with the diagnosis "arthrosis in hand" has doubled (2013 to 2017). A look at the age groups shows that 21 to 30 year olds are particularly affected. Here, the number experts at IKK Südwest have noticed a five-fold increase. The 31- to 45-year-olds also suffer more frequently than four years ago: the corresponding diagnoses increased by two and a half times in this age group.

A detailed overview of the figures can be found in the press release in the appendix. Even if the number of cases seems trivial at first glance, the growth rates already point to a problem that will pick up speed in the coming years.

“Tennis arm and mouse hand were yesterday. Today it is the mobile phone thumb, ”confirms Frank Laubscher, project manager for health promotion at the IKK Südwest. A cramped hand position, combined with filigree wiping tip technology, in which one finger rotates freely and the rest must remain stable, demands a lot from ligaments and tendons. They loosen and the joints lose their hold. "Many people nowadays also work on the go and are not only privately accessible with their smartphones. The usage time increases - and with it the load, ”says Laubscher. For him, the fact that the number of cases has increased so significantly within four years is an alarm signal. "This development should make you think."

And to get used to it: if you feel a slight pull in your thumb from time to time, you should take care of the overwrought smartphone hand and pick up the phone more often.

Author and source information



Video: Osteoarthritis of the hands (September 2022).


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