Go to your local office or computer store, a new mouse is out by Logictech.
What it is is a tiny USB plug that almost sits flush against your computer while it's in.
It's automatically connected to a wireless two button laser mouse with scroll wheel and 1 AA battery
They say the battery will last 18 months and it's included.
Won't wear out your port as you won't need to remove it, or wear out your wallet with batteries. Really nice, got one last week.
Forget Apple's cheapskate, non-ergonomic trackpads and flimsy mice. I saw that as a loser the minute they came out.
Logictech is the boss of mice. Netgear of routers.
Also another problem your having is you have the laptop in your lap, when it should be at eye level like a monitor so your not straining your neck.
I use a tough old wired extended PC keyboard with a 3 foot USB cable, so THAT sits comfortable in my lap where it feels the most comfortable.
So all three, monitor, keyboard and mouse are at what position that where they make the most ergonomic sense.
I sit sometimes from dawn until bedtime with my anti-glare 17" with Firefox and automatically blow up webpages, entirely comfortable.
If you can't stand a mouse I think you should be able to use bluetooth to join an external track pad from Apple to your macbook pro. This would allow you to keep the same scrolling and tapping features as your built in track pad and move it say to a side table or something.
I agree with DS Store you should not always use it in your lap.
While I appreciate the suggestions -and don't mean to be snarky-it is called a LAP top-if I wanted to put it on a solid surface I would have purhcased a desk top. I know it really isn't meant for the lap-but I like to use it on the couch or in bed as its portable. Is there some way to turn off the two finger scroll? That may help if I only have to use one finger or my thumb?
One ergonomic tip is to check how you are using your hand on the trackpad. For example, when typing or scrolling, it's best to hang your hand from your wrist and move your arm along with your fingers. If you anchor your wrist and only move your fingers, you can really strain your hand and wrist.
That's not specifically trackpad advice, it's also advice for typing, or mouse usage, or how students are trained to play the piano. Keep the wrist in line with the arm and hang the fingers down. A bent wrist will bend the carpal tunnel and your nerves inside will become irritated by rubbing against the corner that's created at the wrist. If you still have trouble, you may want to see a physical therapist who can help form better habits. That's how I got rid of wrist pain when I started to use computers years ago.
Because you can go and buy a mouse or other input device, but if it's still used wrong you can still be injured.
....is called a LAP top-if I wanted to put it on a solid surface I would have purhcased a desk top.
Actually Apple call's their machines "notebooks"
Also you do need to place the machine on a solid surface, or in such a manner (like under thighs) that allow air to get under the machine or it will tend to overheat more often.
Why the Mac notebooks have tiny legs underneath.
I like to use it on the couch or in bed as its portable.
Your hand, wrist and forearm are suffering, likely due to long hours using the device that can't support the proper ergonomics as it would defeat it's portability aspect and slim design.
The object to relieve your suffering by placing your hands and arms (and head) in more natural positions, seperate the inputs like keyboard and mouse/trackpad to fit that more natural position.
If you sit into a lounge chair, your arms are resting on arm rests only a few inches above your lap, your palms are slightly turned in and your head is straight, resting back comfortably, because your not straining your body into unnatural positions.
Now all you need is the right monitor stand that will work both for the couch and the bed
small flat hardcover book and wireless laser mouse that molds to the curvature of your hand (unlike a flat trackpad), to use that on your couch or bed wherever your arm and hand come to rest.
a wireless or long wired extended keyboard for your lap, you don't want to twist your head to look down, or either left or right for too long, it will give neck pain, straight ahead is best.
The laptop is still portable, you can take it with you to work/school, but if your going to be spending a lot of time on it, you rig the ergonomics so it's more comfortable at home.
It's not that frigging hard to figure out really, if it hurts, duh, stop doing it..
Here, see what mother Apple says
DS Store-touche on the notebook-you are correct. Yes, I understand if it hurts, stop doing it-but since I just paid $1500 for my MacBook Pro, I would like to use it. I also must mention that I am a dentist, so my hands/wrists are already overworked. I was just hoping someone would know if there is a way to turn off the 'two finger' scrolling into one finger-then I could rest my wrist and use my thumb.
Thank you all for your suggestions.
...turn off the 'two finger' scrolling into one finger
If you look in System Preferences > Trackpad, doesn't seem to be a option, or no three finger scrolling
Also with one finger scrolling, like on a PC trackpad, requires using the side of the trackpad, not a option on Mac's, the mac woun't be able to tell if your meaning to scroll or move the pointer.
Here you go change to three finger scroll instead.
Ergonomics of using a computer are not always very realistic for casual users... feet flat on the floor, back straight, monitor at eye level and facing the user perfectly, keyboard at a height such that the elbows are bent at 90°, forearms and writsts straight, wrists not resting on anything, etc. All perfectly correct, but not exactly in line with casual web surfing while lounging on the couch and the like. Ergonomics are for people sitting in a desk using a computer for 8 hours.
Honestly, that stuff works, but not as well as simply taking a break periodically and moving your arms and wrists in different ways during those breaks. I used to have terrible problems with shoulder, arm and wrist pain, and the only thing that ultimately helped was when I wrote some software to force me to take breaks. These days, I don't need that anymore, but I do take breaks... get up and do something else for 5 or 10 minutes every half hour to hour or so. Stretch and flex your muscles, or do some simple task that makes you move your arms and hands.
When using a trackpad, one is usually inclined to keep the wrist and finger floating over the surface. This causes unnecessary continual muscle and tendon tension.
You should lay all your hand and fingers on the surface of the trackpad. This will cause no issues to the pointer, and will let your hand muscles rest. Do not lift your fingers too much, but just slightly.
Using the trackpad this way, you will have your hand always free of stress.
I used a mouse for years with no problem. As soon as I started with track pad I've had pain which doesn't go away. I'm told my technique is wrong. I end up lifting my other fingers. I'm always in pain. Plus texting/typing on iPhone and iPad....I may go to physical therapist because after 6 months this is no good.