Proper Steps for Wrapping an Injured Wrist and Hand

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Your wrists and hands are susceptible to injury and are quite vulnerable to pain. A wrist injury can range from a minor sprain to a medical condition such as carpal tunnel or arthritis. The best way to treat one of these injuries is to wrap the wrist and hand to prevent them from further damage and to get pressure on the wound in order to reduce swelling. Compression also acts as a pain reliever and aids in the healing process. Here are 4 proper steps to take to wrap your hand and wrist properly:

Step 1: Start From The Hand - Your first wrap should be around the hand. Start just below the knuckles, and begin wrapping around your palm so that the wrap goes completely around the hand and meets back at the starting point. Ensure that you've created a tight first wrap that provides compression without restricting blood flow. If you start the wrap sloppy, the rest will likely be messed up and inefficient.

Step 2: Securing the Wrist - Each overlaying wrap should cover the previous one by about 50%. After you've completed a couple secure wraps around the palm, do a wrap below the thumb that covers the wrist. Make sure you do a couple secure wraps around the wrist before coming back up to the hand for an extra layer.

Step 3: Stabilizing - You should now have a secure wrap around the hand and wrist and can begin stabilizing the compression. Complete several wraps below the wrist as you go a few inches down your arm. This will prevent the wrist from being able to move. This is an important step because our forearm muscles can still move the wrist if it hasn't been stabilized.

Step 4: Secure the Wrap - Some wraps will come with a clip or velcro ends that makes it simple to secure the wrap. If these aren't available, you can also tuck the end of the wrap into itself to hold it tightly in place. Movement can cause your compression wrap to become loose, so it's essential that you only use this as a temporary solution until you find something more secure.

The amount of time it takes to heal will vary depending on the severity of the injury. A typical sprain takes two to three days to heal up, and if it takes any longer, be sure to call your doctor. Putting ice on an injury is another way you can prevent swelling to help speed up the process.


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