We’ve all heard of carpal tunnel syndrome before, but what exactly is it? Carpal tunnel is often identified by numbness, tingling, and weakness in the thumb, index, or middle finger. it typically involves issues with the wrists and hands, and is becoming increasingly common due to frequent computer and cell phone use.
How Does It Happen?
People who perform the same motion over and over again with their hands are most likely to suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome. The carpal tunnel is a band of tissue located on the front side of the wrist (the same area you’d wear your watch). There you’ll find many of the tendons, nerves, and blood vessels that your hand needs to function properly. When the carpal tunnel is damaged and pressure is put on the nerves and arteries in the wrist and hand, carpal tunnel syndrome occurs.
What Does It Feel Like?
Carpal tunnel syndrome doesn't just happen instantly. It can take weeks or even months for the pain to present itself, and it will only get worse if left untreated.
Carpal tunnel syndrome can include symptoms besides pain, including weakness and clumsiness in the hands and loss of muscle in the palms. It can be aggravated by diseases like diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis, though it is usually repetitive actions that exacerbate the issues.
How Can It Be Treated?
As we mentioned, people who do repetitive motions with theirs hands are at higher risk, For example, if you work on computers and put added strain on the muscles of the shoulders, forearms, wrists, and hands, you could be at greater risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome. These strains can be prevented with tools like ergonomic keyboards. You should also take regular breaks to change position and stretch. We have several stretches we can share with you to help you prevent suffering due to carpal tunnel syndrome.
Traditionally, carpal tunnel syndrome has been treated with splints, injections, surgery, and anti-inflammatory drugs. Here at Stiles Chiropractic, we can treat carpal tunnel syndrome with joint manipulations and mobilization to help your joints and wrist move more freely. Additionally, we can also use soft tissue treatments to relieve muscle tension that may be bothering the nerves.
If you believe chiropractic care can help you or just have general questions, contact us today. Our team of chiropractic professionals is here to help!