Do you feel tingling, numbness, muscle damage, or weakness in your hand and fingers? It is likely carpal tunnel syndrome, a condition that appears due to pressure exerted on the median nerve, that is, in the lower area of the palm of the hand.
Although it is not proven how this ailment comes to occur, it is true that many people who suffer from it usually spend many hours performing the same movement or keeping their hands and wrists against a hard surface, such as an office table. If this is your case and you have been diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome, then in we explain what is the treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome, all the options you have at your fingertips.
What is carpal tunnel syndrome
The median nerve crosses the wrist, so it is responsible for providing sensation and movement throughout the hand, as well as in the fingers. The area through which this nerve passes is called the carpal tunnel due to the bulging shape of the end of the palm of the hand. From this, when the nerve becomes inflamed and causes pain, it is called carpal tunnel syndrome.
Causes of carpal tunnel syndrome
It is not clear what causes carpal tunnel syndrome, but we can assure some data:
- Small carpal tunnel: Some people are born with a smaller-than-normal carpal tunnel, making them more likely to have this condition.
- Repetition of movements: Sometimes carpal tunnel syndrome occurs in people who repeat hand and wrist movements mainly due to work.
- Vibrations: Vibrating tools can also cause this condition.
- Age: people between 30 and 60 years old usually suffer from this problem.
- Arthritis: Those with rheumatoid arthritis are more likely to develop carpal tunnel syndrome.
- Previous injuries: if you have or have had injuries to your wrists, you are more likely to suffer from this problem.
- Obesity and fluid retention: Obesity, as well as fluid retention, can eventually lead to carpal tunnel syndrome.
Carpal tunnel symptoms
The symptoms of this condition usually appear gradually and gradually, so we may not realize it until it has advanced a little. Among the most common symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome are:
- Pain in the wrists, hands, and arms: Sometimes, the pain can reach up to the elbow.
- Tingling sensation: both in the palm of the hand and in the fingers.
- Weakness in the hands: if the tingling is very light, we may have a constant weakness in the hands, which would prevent us from having the same strength to grasp objects.
- Your hands fall asleep at night: this usually happens when you sleep on top of your wrists.
Symptoms of severe carpal tunnel
- Difficulty moving the fingers: this usually occurs in more advanced cases, generating clumsiness in the movements.
- Difficulty grasping objects: especially if they are small and heavy, since the fingers cannot move freely or have the same strength as before suffering from the syndrome.
If you are not sure that your problem is this, physiotherapy can help you know if you suffer from carpal tunnel, although it is best to always go through your family doctor first.
Home Remedies for Carpal Tunnel
There are several treatments without surgery to relieve the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome, such as:
- Apply ice: ice is very useful to lower inflammations. Ideally, you should apply ice every day, especially at times when you feel the most pain. If you can't stand direct contact with something frozen, you can wrap it in a rag.
- Anti-inflammatory infusions: there are many plants with anti-inflammatory properties, such as rosemary or chamomile. Although infusions do not have to be harmful, before you start consuming them, consult with your doctor or specialist to know if you should follow certain guidelines.
- Anti-inflammatory foods: another of the best options for day to day is to consume foods with anti-inflammatory properties, such as ginger, turmeric, garlic or onion.
Alternative therapies for carpal tunnel syndrome
However, if you are looking to cure the problem (not the symptoms) without going under the knife, another option is to try one of these alternative therapies to cure carpal tunnel syndrome:
- Reiki: Reiki is a type of therapy that works with the universal energy that comes out through the hands of the healer. It is said that reiki is able to cure almost everything, yes, if you find a professional.
- Acupuncture: Acupuncture is an oriental Chinese technique that uses small needles to work on different bodily, mental and emotional ailments.
- Biomagnetism: this is a type of therapy not well known but very efficient. Like Reiki, it is a healing technique that uses energies. However, unlike Reiki, biomagnetism works with the patient's own energy to rebalance it.
Carpal tunnel exercises and stretches
Whether we have carpal tunnel syndrome, or if we just want to prevent it, it is advisable to do a series of exercises and stretches, such as the following:
- Wrist stretches: to correctly do the stretches in this area of the body, you will only have to stretch your arm and, with the help of one hand, take the other down and then up, trying to hold 60 seconds in each position. In this way, you will be stretching your wrist.
- Finger stretches: by stretching the fingers, we will also be relaxing the middle finger, while helping to remove the tension that accumulates in the fingers after long repetitive activities. To do this, you will only have to stretch your hand and tense it for a minute. Then, close your fingers, but keep your knuckles stretched. Repeat as many times as you need.
- Clench your fists: Another option is to close and clench your fists for a few seconds, and then open your hand, extending it as much as you can. In this way, you will work both your hand and your fingers.
- Moving your fingers: Another good exercise, especially when the syndrome is mild, is to move your fingers in the air, as if you were playing the piano or typing on a keyboard.
However, it is best to go to your doctor so that he can indicate the most appropriate exercises for your case, as well as other guidelines to follow.
Carpal tunnel operation
However, if you want safe results, it is best to go through the operating room. One of the main reasons why the middle nerve becomes inflamed is because the duct through which it passes, the so-called carpal tunnel, is very narrow, so it is very easy to feel a lot of discomfort if the nerve becomes inflamed.
In this way, what the surgeon does in the operation is to widen the walls of the carpal tunnel. Thus, the middle nerve will not be pressed by this tunnel, resulting in a natural DE inflammation of the nerve and, therefore, all discomfort would end.
After surgery and a short rest time, your doctor or specialist will refer you to start the rehabilitation exercises so that you can start them as soon as possible.
Now that you know the treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome, you may also be interested in this other article from on Home Remedies for Wrist Pain.