Mommy Thumb

DeQuervain’s Tendinitis (Mommy Thumb)

mommy thumb kinesiotaping
Many of my postpartum mama’s have a difficult time working out after pregnancy due to pain in their wrists! Some people have lingering carpal tunnel symptoms due to swelling during pregnancy while others develop DeQuervain’s Tendonitis. What is this? It is a “painful inflammation of tendons in the thumb that extend to the wrist…The result is pain at the base of the thumb and extending into the lower arm”(WebMD).

What Causes This?

Residual swelling from pregnancy, overuse, direct injury, repetitive grasping (such as lifting up your baby) can all cause pain and inflammation in the tendons. It affects women more than men 80% of the time.


Pain along the back of the thumb and into the forearm.
Swelling or pain at the wrist
Difficulty picking up or grasping items
Pain when moving thumb
mommy thumb

How Can this be Helped?

– A wrist splint can be worn in order to immobilize the affected area and allow the tendon to heal.
– A splint should only be worn in severe cases as 4-6 weeks of immobilization will result in weakness and need for rehabilitation afterwards.
– Ice can be applied for swelling and pain relief
– Kinesiotape can be applied to increase blood flow, promote healing, and offload the tension on the tendon. See my video below on how to apply the tape! Be sure to check out my previous Kinesiotaping video here before you begin for additional information.

– Cut a piece of Kinesiotape (you can buy some here) approximately 6” long in half and round off the edges, make a hole in one end.
– Cut a shorter piece (3” long) and round off the edges, cut a slit in one half to make two tails.
– With no tension apply end with hole to the nailbed of the thumb.
– With wrist abducted (UP from table) apply other end to forearm.
– Bring wrist into a neutral position, relax the thumb and press down the rest of the tape.
– Take your second piece and apply the fat side to the inside of your wrist
– With 50% tension pull each tail around your wrist to the other side, being sure to not apply tension to the end of the tape.
– Take a piece of paper and rub it along all of the tape to activate the adhesive.
– Word of advice – much better if you shave your arm first!

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