Lady's arm

Why Does Arm Hurt? 12 Possible Causes of Arm Pain

Any sort of discomfort or pain experienced in the arm through its length is defined as arm pain. The pain may or may not include the elbow, wrist, and shoulder area. It can happen due to different reasons, most common ones being overuse and some sort of injury. Depending on the cause, the pain may suddenly start at times or gradually go away. This article will tell you all about the pain in the right hand and arm, its causes, its treatment along with the medication.

12 Possible Causes of Arm Pain

Pain In Hand and Arm 

The pain in right hand differs from the pain in right arm as it may have several different causes related to it. For example, one may develop a gradual pain in the right hand while making a fist or while grasping and holding objects. However, one may have pain while lifting things or while folding one’s arms due to some old injury, structural abnormalities overuse.

It is usually accompanied by some form of numbness or tingling in the arms, hands, and fingers. The affected arm’s pain may range from mild to severe, depending on the cause and location of the pain. The pain and hand can also occur due to some nerve ending disorders which lead to a tingling sensation in the fingers. Arthritis, whiplash, tennis elbow and carpel tunnel syndrome are some of the reasons for the pain of the arm and can be treated with a set of medicines.

 Arm pain causes 

The causes varied, mostly based upon overuse, injuries, and nerve ending disorders. The most common ones are arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, tennis elbow, dislocations, and sprains. The most common right and left arm pain causes are given below:

  • Arthritis: The inflammation of joints of different body parts is known as arthritis and can be of various types. Arthritis is one of the major reasons for pain for elder people as it affects the elbow and wrist joints the most.
  • Sprains and strains: Sprains and strains usually happen due to stretching of a certain muscle of the body or some injury due to a physical activity. Sprains and strains are usually minor and don’t need much of medical attention but do need so when the problem grows severe and the pain is too much.
  • Dislocation: When one’s bone is no longer where it should be, that is known as the dislocation of the bone. The problem is quite severe and requires immediate medical attention. The person suffers from a lot of pain and needs to be given a set of painkillers to suppress it.
  • Frozen shoulder: When the movement of shoulder is restricted due to some sort of muscular strain, that condition is known as frozen shoulder. A frozen shoulder usually causes mild pain in the arm and can be treated with a set of exercises.
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome: The compression of the median nerve from the arm to the hand is known as carpal tunnel syndrome. The person with this syndrome gets severe pain in their hands, tingling sensation, numbness, and more often, loses the grip of the hand as well. The condition needs medical attention and a treatment cycle. Usual causes for carpal tunnel syndrome are poor positioning of the wrist while using the computer keyboard and mouse, excessive use of vibrating tools such as power drills, etc.
  • Tennis elbow: Tennis elbow refers to the damage in the muscle of the forearm due to some sort of physical activity. This causes the joint to lock leading to pain in the patient’s forearm and can be treated with physiotherapy.
  • Radial tunnel syndrome: Radial tunnel syndrome happens due to the blockage of the radial nerve and has symptoms similar to that of carpal tunnel syndrome. The patients face extreme difficulty with their grip.
  • Fracture: Fracture refers to a broken bone. When any bone is broken in the right arm, the person has a fracture and consequently, will be under severe pain. The pain is usually curbed with a cycle of painkillers along with the treatment for the fracture itself.
  • Tendonitis: The thick cords that join one’s muscles to their bones are known as tendons. The inflammation or the injury of the tendons is known as tendonitis. It causes acute pain in one’s joints and has a specific treatment for the same.
  • Syringomyelia: It involves a formation of a cyst like substance in the spinal cord which may later grow and cause damage to the nerves in the arm. If untreated, the syringomyelia can become worse and the pain can grow severe.
  • Thoracic outlet syndrome: The compression of the muscles of arm, neck and shoulder lead to thoracic outlet syndrome which can cause tingling sensation in the arm, and numbness. The possible causes of the syndrome include a severe injury or trauma.
  • Cubital tunnel syndrome: Excessive pressure on the ulnar nerve of the arm can cause severe pain, which is also known as cubital tunnel syndrome. Holding the elbow in the bent position for longer periods of time is one of the major causes of cubital tunnel syndrome.
  • Injured arm

Arm Pain Treatment 

Pain in the arm and hand depends upon the underlying cause of the pain. If the pain is related to some sort of muscle pull or strain due to overuse, a set of physical exercises is advised to curb the same.

However, if the pain is due to an injury which leads to a fracture, dislocation, or tennis elbow, the doctors might prescribe a set of painkillers for the same to suppress the arm pain and hand. Arthritis has a different approach altogether where the treatment includes a set of medication meant to strengthen the bones which resultantly reduce the pain in the joints.

Nerve disorders like carpal tunnel syndrome and radial tunnel syndrome need to be treated medically with some sorts of surgery on the nerves. On the other hand, tendonitis can be treated by a set of physical exercise which will help one move their joints properly and reduce the pain.

We’ll look at the basic treatments for the common causes of pain in the arm:

Sprains and Strains: The doctors usually prescribe treatment involving restricting movement using crepe bandages and application of ointments for relief. These take about 3-4 days to heal.

Dislocations: Dislocations are a little tricky to deal with and need the attention of an expert medical professional who will physically move the joint back in its place. Rest and restriction of movement is advised following a dislocation.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: The treatment for carpal tunnel Syndrome usually requires medical attention in order to relieve the pressure on the median nerve. This can be in the form of a surgery, or injection of a corticosteroid to relieve the pressure on the median nerve.

Tennis Elbow: Tennis elbow is treated by means of physiotherapy and ultrasound therapy. An elbow brace or support usually accompanies the treatment. The treatment can go on for up to a month.

Radial Tunnel Syndrome: Radial tunnel syndrome usually requires a surgical intervention, where a part of the muscle is removed to relieve the pressure on the radial nerve. The post-surgical rest is followed by extensive physiotherapy.

Fracture: The treatment for fractures involves complete restriction of movement of the right arm usually accompanied by a set of painkillers. Fractures can take about a month to heal completely and physiotherapy is sometimes recommended for the patients.

Tendonitis: Tendonitis is a common injury and is dealt with by using the RICE approach: Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation of the injured right arm. Since it is caused by overuse of the muscles surrounding the concerned tendons, exercises for strengthening the surrounding muscles are often recommended.

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