How Does A Physical Therapist Treat Hand Pain?

Hand and wrist pain can make even the most basic everyday tasks difficult to do. It can be tough to do important tasks at work or physical activity when you have discomfort from arthritis, a jammed finger, or numbness from carpal tunnel syndrome. Skilled therapy can often mean the difference between a nagging hand injury that lasts months and being pain-free.

There are a lot of structures in the hand and wrist to hurt, with 27 bones and 20 muscles, plus all of their related ligaments, joints, and tendons. A physical therapist, occupational therapist, or trained hand therapist from PT Solutions will be able to identify the source of your pain and treat it appropriately.


Arthritis in the hand is prevalent, and it’s linked to a loss of grip strength, discomfort, and range of motion in the hand and wrist. 

Carpal tunnel syndrome, like sprains/strains and arthritis, is a prevalent cause of hand and wrist dysfunction. Many different sources of pain can refer to pain in a carpal tunnel-like pattern. A physical therapist from PT Solutions will be able to conduct a thorough examination and search for other possible causes of symptoms (nerve entrapment, active trigger points, cervical dysfunction). They will employ manual therapy techniques designed particularly for the treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome, as well as assist in the correction of any postural issues that may be contributing to the symptoms.

Hand Therapy

Hand treatment is an important part of this procedure. It is critical to exercise your joints on a daily basis. Arthritis pain, function, happiness, and quality of life can all be improved by engaging in joint-friendly physical activity. 4 A hand therapist will devise a treatment plan that is unique to the patient. They will analyze your joint condition, muscle strength, balance, and endurance in order to assist you in developing an activity program to help you cope with your arthritis.

  • Wrist Exercises – These exercises can be done at any time and will help you increase your flexibility. Light weights can also be used to build strength, but consult with your hand therapist first. It is also worth noting that the exercises indicated here should not be used in place of consulting with a hand therapist, who will carefully select activities based on your general health and physical condition.
  • Finger Exercises – Finger exercises are necessary for building strength and flexibility as well as pain relief.
  • Grip Exercises – Grip strength can be affected by some conditions, such as arthritis. Simple daily workouts will aid you with your movements and re-establish your hand strength.

Therapeutic Exercises Programs

Therapeutic exercise programs are created and adjusted to the individual illness of the patient. These long-term treatments are intended to alleviate pain and restrictions while also increasing the chances of injury avoidance in the future. Therapeutic exercise teaches patients appropriate movement patterns and increases strength and endurance, all of which are required for full recovery from current dysfunction.

How do therapists assist in the improvement of function?

  • Exercises – Active hand and finger exercises, in which the patient uses his or her own muscle strength, are one example. When a patient or therapist pushes a stiff joint to move without the patient’s own tendons/muscles, this is referred to as passive exercises.
  • Pain Management – Fluidotherapy, ionotophoresis, therapeutic ultrasound, desensitization, mirror treatment, and guided visualization are all options for pain relief.
  • Edema Management – External compression garments and wraps, as well as retrograde massage, elevation, and active motion, are all recommended.
  • Scar Treatment – Massage with friction, tape, and silicone putty/sleeves/sheets.
  • Strengthening – This may include the use of various types of putty, grippers, weights, TheraBands, and other aids.

Are You Looking for Relief From Elbow, Wrist, and Hand Pain? 

Pace Physical Therapy in San Jose, California specializes in non-surgical neck pain relief and recovery therapies.  We pride ourselves on offering the best possible physical therapy available and going above and beyond for our patients. Our highly experienced physical therapist will work with you to improve your function and relieve your pain. We start by assessing the body as a whole. Oftentimes the cause of pain or an injury extends far beyond just the body part or muscle hurting. Without taking a comprehensive look at your entire self, we would be doing you a disservice in fully helping you heal and preventing future limitations. We then move on to fixing your areas of limitation.  Don’t let your quality of life be diminished by elbow, wrist, or hand pain any longer! If you are looking for a San Jose, CA physical therapist, contact Pace Physical Therapy today to make an appointment and meet with one of our committed team members. We would be delighted to get you back to the safe and physically active life that you deserve! Contact us today to schedule your appointment!