The Kitchen and the Trigger Finger

You would think a salad artist’s job is easy but it’s not.

I had my hands checked for what I thought could be carpal tunnel. I’ve been experiencing stiffness and pain from both my hands since I shifted roles from sole salad server to both salad server and salad tosser (which meant more hours inside the kitchen). I was able to read an article that carpal tunnels aren’t limited to people working hours using the computer. People who work in the kitchen also get it. The thought of possibly getting surgery as treatment for this pain urged me to get my hands checked by the specialist before the pain gets worse. Thank God it’s not as serious.

Every morning, the left side of my left hand (palm down) is numb and my ring finger and pinky locks when I try to open and close my hand.  There’s pain in my knuckles from both hands. There’s pain from the base of my left ring finger.

The specialist did a physical exam and diagnosed I had the trigger finger which is very common for people who do repititive actions.

Trigger finger, also known as stenosing tenosynovitis (stuh-NO-sing ten-o-sin-o-VIE-tis), is a condition in which one of your fingers gets stuck in a bent position. Your finger may straighten with a snap — like a trigger being pulled and released.

Trigger finger occurs when inflammation narrows the space within the sheath that surrounds the tendon in the affected finger. If trigger finger is severe, your finger may become locked in a bent position.
People whose work or hobbies require repetitive gripping actions are at higher risk of developing trigger finger. The condition is also more common in women.

The specialist said that for some people, an injection of steroid into the area around the tendon and the pulley is effective in relieving the trigger finger. He said I’m not in that stage yet. For now, he’s prescribed me oral anti-inflammatory medication twice a day for a week and a gel to use for my hands thrice a day for a week. If there’s still pain after that, i need to come back. Hopefully it doesn’t get worse.

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