It can be scary when tingling pain and numbness escalates to difficulty completing everyday tasks. It could be carrying a laundry basket, holding a glass of water, or opening a jar. Carpal tunnel leads to pain and weakness in the hands and wrist that can interfere with your life.
Chiropractic treatment allows you to live life uninterrupted by carpal tunnel pain.
Carpal Tunnel Pain Relief
Less Invasive Techniques
Drug-Free Pain Management
What is carpal tunnel syndrome?
First described in the 1800s, carpal tunnel syndrome is a common condition of pain, numbness, tingling, and weakness in the hand and wrist. It's caused when there is increased pressure on the median nerve in the wrist.
The carpal tunnel in your wrist connects your hand and forearm and houses the median nerve. The nerve provides sensation to your thumb, index, middle fingers, and half of the ring finger.
What does carpal tunnel look like?
Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) is a common medical condition that can be more likely in some depending on their health issues, lifestyle patterns, and job requirements. Women are three times more likely than men to develop CTS (Source).
Health conditions that increase the likelihood of carpal tunnel pain include:
Nerve-damaging conditions like diabetes
Inflammatory conditions like rheumatoid arthritis
Hereditary disposition for smaller carpal tunnels
Wrist fractures or injury
Hand and wrist pain from working conditions
Carpal tunnel pain affects anyone who uses their wrists and hands repeatedly – for work or hobbies. Your likelihood of developing CTS increases with age.
Workplace conditions that are often connected to CTS include:
Working with vibrating hand tools
High force actions, like hammering
Extreme wrist motions
Improper computer mouse usage
Data entry and repetitive motions
Assembly line work like manufacturing, sewing, packing, and more
Carpal tunnel treatment from a chiropractor
Carpal tunnel pain can be treated with or without surgical means depending on the severity of symptoms and their interference in performing daily tasks. Non-surgical treatments include splinting and medications. Chiropractic care is less invasive than a surgical procedure.
Some CTS patients may experience side effects from medications or they simply do not want to take prescription medications for their treatment. Chiropractic treatment is a drug-free alternative for carpal tunnel pain management.
With chiropractic treatment you can:
Reduce carpal tunnel pain
Increase range of motion
Increase sensation in the affected area
The chiropractic approach to overall health
It's like you learned as a kid – the hand is connected to the wrist, which is connected to the arm, which is connected to the shoulder, etc. All things lead back to the spine, and all nerves receive signals from the central nervous system protected by the spine.
Chiropractors understand that the health of your spine and nervous system affects the entire body. For this reason, chiropractors begin with relieving wrist and hand pain but then offer chiropractic adjustments to the upper spine to address potential contributing factors.
How to prevent carpal tunnel
For some people, carpal tunnel syndrome is unavoidable. You can still minimize stress on your hands and wrists to decrease the likelihood of developing carpal tunnel pain.
Reduce your force
Relax your grip
Avoid flexing and extending your wrists repeatedly
Gently stretch and bend hands and wrists periodically
Improve your posture
Take frequent rest breaks from repetitive motions
Rotate tasks if possible
Relax your wrist in a middle position; avoid bending it all the way up or down
Keep your keyboard at elbow height or slightly lower
Switch out tools or redesign workstations to enable natural wrist positioning
Keep hands and wrists warm to avoid pain and stiffness
What does carpal tunnel feel like?
Carpal tunnel syndrome usually develops first in your dominant hand. It can feel like a burning and tingling sensation on the palm side of the hand. As symptoms of carpal tunnel advance, fingers can feel useless and you may experience loss of grip.
CTS can greatly interfere not only with your job but also with completing everyday tasks like taking the milk out of the refrigerator, carrying shopping bags, or gripping the steering wheel. You may drop objects or shake out your hands in an attempt to relieve symptoms.
Some people with severe CTS cannot determine hot or cold by touch. If left untreated, it can cause severe muscle damage at the base of the thumb.
Why does carpal tunnel syndrome get worse at night?
Carpal tunnel pain usually starts gradually with numbness or tingling. One of the early symptoms reported is nighttime pain. If you sleep with your wrist curled, this can cause pain and disrupt sleep.
Daytime symptoms include tingling, numbness, and grip difficulty.
What to expect from chiropractic treatment
Your doctor of chiropractic will compile a medical history and complete a physical examination during your first visit. Reviewing your daily routines will also help with diagnosing carpal tunnel syndrome.
The goal of chiropractic treatment for CTS will be pain relief without medication or surgery. A chiropractor may recommend a wrist brace or cold pack therapy. We also use chiropractic treatments like joint and spinal adjustments, trigger point therapy, soft tissue mobilization, and stretching or strengthening exercises.
If you are ready to diagnose and treat your carpal tunnel pain, schedule a consultation in our office.