We all know the hazard of doing something over and over – perhaps to excess. Jogger’s knee, tennis elbow – and now, “blackberry thumb”.
Just what is Blackberry Thumb? It’s a repetative stress injury (“RSI”) of the thumb, brought on by using the thumb too much, too often, for things such as thumb typing (typing, for example, on small – even tiny – keyboards such as are found on PDAs like the Blackberry, and the Sidekick).
“It affects business because I can’t whack away at my Blackberry like I used to,” complained one sufferer of Blackberry thumb.
Said another, “It can get sore and tender, but I’m learning to live with it.”
Of course, tiny keyboards, coupled with our society’s drive to be online at all hours, is to blame, but still, a user shouldn’t “learn to live” with Blackberry thumb, and common sense should apply.
Don’t use your PDA to type long documents, and if you find that you are having to type a lot on your PDA, consider getting a folding bluetooth keyboard which can be connected to any PDA or other device which has bluetooth (costing about $80.00, they are far less expensive than time lost, doctors visits, and other expenses associated with being sidelined by Blackberry thumb, not to mention avoiding the pain!)
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If you already have Blackberry thumb, medical treatment can include splinting the thumbs, complete rest for the thumbs, and even injections into the thumbs (ouch!)
And it’s not just the medical establishment which is getting hip to Blackberry thumbs. Some places, such as the Hyatt hotel chain, are now offering thumb massages to help reduce stress on our poor thumbs!
Statistics indicate that the sort of injury which includes RSI now accounts for at least 30% of all work-related injuries. And more and more people now carry some form of Internet-connected communications with them (even if it’s just their cell phone).
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It’s no wonder that our poor fifth digit is overworked, and stressed!
This is, of course, why we refer to Blackberry thumb as the plague of the digital age.
So be good to your thumbs, and your thumbs will be good to you. And if you must use your handheld device to do a great deal of text work, consider getting one of those foldable bluetooth keyboards. You can get more information about them, and how to order one, by clicking on the picture below.
No Paywall Here!
The Internet Patrol is and always has been free. We don't hide our articles behind a paywall, or restrict the number of articles you can read in a month if you don't give us money. That said, it does cost us money to run the site, so if something you read here was helpful or useful, won't you consider donating something to help keep the Internet Patrol free? Thank you!
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