If your job requires you to spend long hours typing on the computer or you spend a lot of time doing household chores, you may have noticed persistent pain in the palm of your hand and wrist , often accompanied by slight tingling and feeling of weakness in the area. Does it ring a bell? If so, you may be experiencing the symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) , popularly known as “Secretary's Disease”.
Symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome
Carpal tunnel syndrome occurs when we make repetitive movements with the hand over a long period of time: when we play an instrument, write or iron, pressure is produced on the nerves of the anterior face of the wrist . Many times, this pressure can cause inflammation that narrows the carpal tunnel and presses on the median nerve, which is responsible for mobility and sensitivity, very quickly. People suffering from hypothyroidism or diabetes are also susceptible to this ailment.
The most common symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome are:
- Increasingly intense tingling
- hand weakness
- Difficulty picking up and/or moving objects
- pins and needles sensation
- Persistent wrist pain that spreads throughout the hand and fingers
Depending on the severity of these symptoms, it is best to see a doctor to rule out other possible pathologies.
Tips to relieve carpal tunnel pain
If you consider that the discomfort is still mild and does not pose a great impediment, you can try the following tips to relieve carpal tunnel pain:
- Rest : It is important that you rest your hand for a few days and avoid making movements that could worsen the injury. Immobilizing your wrist with a splint can help protect the area and prevent bending. If you work for hours at a time in front of the computer, it can also be beneficial to take breaks from time to time to relax your wrist and avoid overexertion.
- Hydrotherapy : hydrotherapy is a very useful tool to treat some pathologies, since the use of water produces muscular relief. Put the affected area in hot water for a few minutes, then change the temperature and leave the doll under cold water for a few more minutes. Repeat this action a few times a day until you notice an improvement. The change in temperature will help promote blood circulation in the area and will relax your muscles.
- Anti- inflammatory creams : Applying a cream with pain-relieving properties can reduce inflammation and relieve pressure on the muscle. Massage your wrist carefully once you have applied the ointment, making circular movements around the area, and let it take effect.
Home remedies for carpal tunnel pain
There are many foods and plants that, due to their anti-inflammatory properties, are very beneficial for conditions like this. We teach you how to prepare some ointments that will help you relieve muscle pressure caused by carpal tunnel syndrome, take note!
- Ginger and Mint – Ginger is one of the most popular natural anti-inflammatory foods , and for good reason. From we recommend that you add a couple of tablespoons of ginger root in a glass of water and then add a few sprigs of mint (another great natural anti-inflammatory). Once you have the infusion prepared, let it cool in the fridge for half an hour and when you take it out, it will be ready to soak a compress and apply it to the affected area. If you like the taste of ginger, you can also drink infusions or juices from this plant together with another fruit: apple or pineapple are our favourites.
- Rosemary : You may not know it, but rosemary is a plant that is very rich in active ingredients and has anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and antioxidant properties. Make an infusion with a couple of rosemary leaves and, once again, wet a compress to apply to your wrist.
- Infusion with St. John's wort : if you know this plant, you will know that it is one of the most recommended natural remedies for anxiety and depression. Well, today we discover that St. John's wort is also an excellent anti-inflammatory, so gently massaging the lower part of the palm with this plant can be very useful.
- Meadowsweet flowers : Also known as the Queen of the Meadows, this plant has anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and even analgesic properties. Heat a glass of water with a couple of tablespoons of meadowsweet flowers and apply a wet cloth to the wrist until it cools.
Carpal tunnel exercises
There are a number of exercises that can help relieve carpal tunnel pain and improve the elasticity of your flexor muscles . The great thing about these stretches is that even if you don't have carpal tunnel syndrome, they are very beneficial for your muscles and can help prevent future injuries . So take advantage of your breaks at work and follow some of these tips.
Massage and stretch the muscles of the forearm
Start at the elbow and carefully work your way up to the wrist. Next, extend one arm with the palm facing up and, with the opposite hand, gently flex the dorsal side of the palm, noticing how the wrist muscles are working.
The importance of movement
Although you should not make sudden movements and it is important to avoid overexertion, there are mobility exercises that can be very beneficial for your muscles. For example, something as simple as shaking your hands for thirty seconds can go a long way in relaxing muscles and improving blood flow. Another tip is to press your fists closed for a few seconds before opening your palm and stretching your fingers, thus working various areas of the hand and forearm.
Don't forget your fingers
The following is one of the exercises for the carpal tunnel that gives the best results, since it stretches all the muscles in the area and relieves the pain caused by excess pressure. Bring all the fingers of the affected hand together and place a rubber band around it. Then, slowly spread your fingers apart and bring them back together, preventing the rubber from falling out.
If after a while the symptoms persist and you do not notice any relief, it is important that you put yourself in the hands of professionals so that they can analyze your case and recommend the most appropriate treatment. On some occasions, the fastest and most effective solution is to undergo carpal tunnel surgery; In this way, the surgeon is responsible for cutting the ligament that covers the carpal tunnel and relieves pressure on the median nerve. If you want to have more information about it, consult the article Treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome .