Exercises for Trigger Finger

Exercises for Trigger Finger

What is Trigger Finger?

Trigger finger is a condition scientifically known as stenosing tenosynovitis. It can also be referred to as trigger finger. The tendons in the fingers bend the finger and usually glide smoothly through pulleys (tunnels), which hold it close to the bone. Trigger finger will occur when the pulley becomes too thick, not allowing the tendon to glide easily.

Causes of Trigger Finger

Trigger finger is a common symptom for specific medical conditions. These conditions include rheumatoid arthritis, gout, and diabetes. In addition, the repeated motions of strong gripping can also lead to trigger finger developing; though, the specific cause is not currently known.

Symptoms of Trigger Finger

Trigger finger symptoms begin with discomfort at the base of the thumb or finger, specifically where the finger joins the palm. This area is generally more sensitive to pressure and a lump may develop. Other symptoms include pain, popping, a catching feeling, and limited finger movement. Typically, symptoms will be mildly irritating, though can become extremely painful or debilitating.

Exercises for Trigger Finger

There are exercises that might help to improve trigger finger. The main goal for treatment is to eliminate swelling, catching, and allowing full, painless movement of the finger or thumb. Home treatments like anti-inflammatory medication, hot and cold therapy, wearing a trigger finger brace, and stretches or exercises to help alleviate symptoms. There are a couple of exercises that may help relieve some pain caused by early trigger finger.

  1. Lay the hand palm-down on a flat surface and lift each finger one by one, emphasizing on the injured finger. Raise each finger slowly and deliberately hold each finger in the lifted position.
  2. Wrap a rubber band around the fingers and draw the fingers in and stretch out by opening and closing the hand against the resistance.
  3. Create a circle shape with the affected finger and thumb. Hold for five seconds and repeat about 10 times.
  4. Grab and squeeze a ball for about five seconds and release. Repeat 5-10 times per day.
  5. Spread fingers wide, then draw them together into a fist and repeat the process.
  6. Hold the injured finger and the one next to it, and then spread it apart from one another to form a “V.” Use the thumb and index of the other hand to split the fingers and apply pressure.

If you are experiencing discomfort or pain in your finger or thumb you may be suffering from trigger finger. Make an appointment with Select Orthopedic Specialists by calling (213) 935-8566. Located in Los Angeles and Culver City, California, the offices of Select Orthopedic Specialists will help make your treatment process as easy as possible. Dr. Jennifer Hertz is a board certified Orthopedic Surgeon specializing in the treatment of hand, wrist and elbow including microvascular surgery, arthritis, trauma/fractures, occupational and sports related injuries. She will help diagnose the best treatment option for your case of trigger finger.


S. (n.d.). 7 Exercises to Help Ditch Your Trigger Finger Pain At Home. Retrieved October 12, 2017, from https://www.braceability.com/blog/trigger-finger-exercises/

Trigger Finger. (n.d.). Retrieved October 12, 2017, from http://www.assh.org/handcare/hand-arm-conditions/trigger-finger

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