So I’ve been following up on my wrist because I certainly wasn’t going to continue to feel as badly as I did on Monday. A few things I learned that could maybe help you if you have an injury like this (a bizarre one that springs up out of “nowhere”):

1) Call you insurance company. You may not need a referal to see a specialist, even if your doctor wants you to. They’re the ones paying so call them.

2) Compare available health care providers. The hospital I normally go to wanted me to come in, fill out paperwork and have an appointment with the doctor before going to a specialist. So let me get this straight, they want me to fill out extensive forms with my hurt hand, take two hours off work and pay my $30 copay for my doctor to look at me and say “You need a specialist”? Are these people kidding? I made another call. The hospital 20 minutes away said I needed no referral and they booked me an appointment within the week.

3) Do a little research for DIY cures. A five minute surf on Web MD unearthed a couple possible solutions to my problem: icing and a brace. I bought an Ace brace for $20 at the drugstore and icing (not the fun cake kind but the water kind) is something I’ve been doing at night. Not the all time solution but a little relief from discomfort. Thanks, internet!

4) Put it out there. I sent an email asking for guest posts to some fellow bloggers. Sure enough the emails came back: “I needed braces for awhile.” and “Wow, I’ve been there!” While it doesn’t necessarily help me to know that other people have felt this pain, it’s sure nice to have a little community around this small setback.

5) Determine the cause of your problem. If you think about your injury, it usually didn’t just come out of nowhere. I noticed that after I used the computer, my wrist hurt for the past few months. Only recently has it escalated. Perhaps you notice that your stomach is upset only before going to work or that your eyes hurt when you read small print. Try to be observant about the times you feel pain because, as some 80s television show once said, knowledge is power.

I was amazed that a little research and $20 made me feel so much better and will save me lots of money on my doctor’s visit. So dare to compare, my friends. Doesn’t hurt to look at your options!

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