In keeping ourselves physically fit, we tend to focus on specific parts of our body like the core muscles and quads, but we hardly pay attention to the areas that support these muscles. One of the most significant parts of our body is the wrist.

The wrist plays an important role in our daily life. It provides the range of motion needed to perform daily activities like eating, dressing, writing, typing, playing an instrument, or playing sports. Even though the wrist is a small part of the body, it’s made up of eight bones, as well as ligaments and tendons, making it a delicate area and if you don’t pay attention to it you could run the risk of damaging your wrists and forearms.

Wrist pain can be classified as any discomfort felt in the wrist. It can be caused by a variety of issues, including acute injury, arthritis, gout, and carpal tunnel syndrome. Treatment for wrist injuries depends on the cause of the pain and its severity. But not all wrist injuries require medical care. At home, you can treat minor wrist sprains and strains with the following method:

Take a rest. Often, simply resting the wrist as much as possible to allow it time to heal is effective. Doctors may also recommend pain-relieving medication. Minimize wrist motion to prevent further injury.

Use an ice pack. Ice the area for 20 minutes at a time, 4 to 8 times the first day. You may apply a compression wrap such as The Coldest Wrist Ice Pack which is specifically formulated for various wrist injuries.

Apply compression. Wrap a compression bandage around your wrist to minimize swelling.

Wear a splint. In some cases, wearing a wrist splint can help. Splinting may prevent certain wrist movements that cause irritation. A splint might also reduce the squeezing of the nerve.

Elevate the wrist. Keeping your wrist above heart level will also help prevent swelling. Gravity can help move fluid back toward the heart.

Get Immediate Help If there is an obvious deformity, severe pain, persistent loss of sensation or numbness, or the person cannot move the wrist or maintain a grip, consult a physician immediately or go to a hospital emergency department. A delay in diagnosis and treatment for some types of wrist injuries, such as a torn ligament or bone fracture, can lead to poor healing, reduced range of motion, and long-term disability.

While damage to the wrist is not always avoidable, managing underlying health conditions such as arthritis, practicing proper form when gripping or lifting objects, and performing muscle strengthening exercises can reduce a person’s risk of a wrist injury. You can minimize or even avoid pain in your hands with a few simple stretches. Don’t hesitate to take some time each day to perform these stretches, especially if you have a job that requires hours of writing or typing or an athlete who is always training. Your hands will thank you for it!