Carpal tunnel syndrome, usually caused by repetitive motion of the wrists and hands, causes a lot of discomfort. Specifically, sufferers of carpal tunnel experience tingling and numbness as well as wrist pain. Luckily, if you are experiencing carpal tunnel syndrome, there are things you can do to experience relief. Here are five tips for treating your carpal tunnel:
1. See a Doctor About Other Possible Conditions
While carpal tunnel syndrome is often caused by repetitive movement- for example typing or factory work- it's sometimes related to underlying conditions. It's a good idea to meet with your doctor and try to rule out more serious issues, like rheumatoid arthritis.
2. Get Physical Therapy
A physical therapist will know exactly what wrist, hand and arm exercises will help treat your carpal tunnel. Typically, the physical therapist will begin with an evaluation to determine the severity of your carpal tunnel and see what your range of motion is like. Then, they will create an exercise plan you can do in their office and also at home to ease the swelling in your wrist and provide you with pain relief.
3. Take Anti-inflammatory Drugs
The pain of carpal tunnel is caused by swelling and inflammation which cause pressure on your nerves. By taking anti-inflammatory pain medication like ibuprofen you can reduce the swelling and the pain. Be sure not to exceed the dosage instructions and consult with your doctor so they can recommend a length of time to take the anti-inflammatory medication.
4. Take Breaks to Stretch Your Wrists
If your carpal tunnel was caused or exacerbated by work, for example in a job where you spend long hours typing on the computer, try to take regular breaks to rest and stretch your wrists. Taking a break for a few minutes once an hour or so will make a big difference in your carpal tunnel pain, without sacrificing much work time.
5. Use a Wrist Wrap or Splint
Buy a wrist wrap or splint specifically designed for carpal tunnel at a drugstore or online. This will keep your wrist gently immobilized which will allow it to heal and prevent the inflammation from getting worse. Consult with your physical therapist, but typically they are designed to be worn for a month or so, which should be enough time for your carpal tunnel to be healed.
Carpal tunnel can be painful, but by following these tips you should soon feel your wrist and hand pain vanish.
To learn more, contact a company like St. Luke's Rehabilitation.