Do the middle finger & the thumb of your hand feel weak and numb for no good reason? Do you suspect that you could be facing CTS? If yes, you have landed to the correct place. In this article we will be sharing with our readers some tips to deal with Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
The carpal tunnel syndrome happens when there is a compressed nerve in the carpal tunnel which is a narrow passageway on the palm side of the wrist. A carpal tunnel syndrome can cause tingling, numbness in the arm and hand area. Sometimes your own habits can also become the reason behind carpal tunnel syndrome. Proper treatment, regular medications and daily exercise can treat this problem and helps restore the hand and wrist function.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Symptoms
The Carpal Tunnel Syndrome starts gradually and one of the initial symptoms include tingling and numbness in the thumb, middle finger and index finger.
It can cause a little discomfort in the palm of your hand and in your wrist. Other common symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome include;
You may experience a little weakness in your hands, and because of which you won’t be able to hold objects with a firm grip. Carpal tunnel syndrome can cause so much weakness that you might even drop the objects from your hands.
Tingling and numbness
You may experience numbness and tingling in your hands and fingers. Usually the index, thumb, middle and the ring fingers are affected but not your little finger. You will feel a sensation of getting an electric shock in the fingers. The tingling sensation will travel from the wrist up to your arm. The symptoms will show up in the unlikely times such as while you are steering a wheel, reading a newspaper or using a phone. The sensation at times is so harsh that it will even wake you up from your sleep. The numb feeling in your hands, wrists, and fingers will get prominent over the time.
Causes for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
There is a nerve that runs through the passageway in your wrist that is also known as carpal tunnel. It gives sensation to the palm side of the fingers and thumbs except for the little finger. It also gives nerve signals to move the muscles that are caused around the base of the thumb (motor function).
Anything that irritates and squeezes the median nerve may become the reason behind carpal tunnel syndrome. CTS is generally caused when the pressure is exerted on the median nerve. A wrist fracture can narrow the carpal tunnel and irritate the nerve. Your health problems, the anatomy of the wrist and repetitive hand motions can also act as an underlying factor for carpal tunnel syndrome.
Prevention for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
There are some proven strategies that can help prevent stress from the wrists and hands:
Relax your grip and reduce the force
If you use keyboard to type or a register to write, then make sure that you use your fingers gently. If you must write for a longer period, then use a pen that is oversized.
Take frequent breaks in between
Gently bend hands and stretch wrists periodically. Do alternate tasks whenever possible.
Improve your posture
Incorrect posture means rolling the shoulders forward and compressing the nerves in your neck. An improper posture can badly affect your hands, wrists and fingers.
Try to keep your hands warm
You can get stiffness in your hands if you work in a very cold environment. You can keep your hands and wrists warm by wearing gloves.
Change your computer mouse
Make sure that the mouse of your computer is comfortable to use, and it does not strain your wrist.
Keep a check on your form
Always avoid bending your wrist all the way down or up. If you have a relaxed middle position, then it is best for your overall form. You can even keep your keyboard at the height of the elbow or even lower.
Placing an ice pack on the injured wrist will help provide relief from the problem. Just make sure that you do not apply the ice directly onto the surface of the skin.
Use Carpal Tunnel Brace
While sleeping most people without knowing bend their wrist and that could trigger the problem of carpal tunnel syndrome. By using carpal tunnel brace the bending of the wrist can be avoided. It is very difficult to keep the wrist in a proper, neutral position so a carpal tunnel brace can help to provide a little relief from the symptoms and the pain.
There are many activities that can trigger flare-ups. Due to repeated movements and due to extra strain on the wrist the symptoms could even worsen. So, to avoid this you can try wearing a brace to work.
Carpal tunnel syndrome can be treated by taking a few precautions or using a carpal tunnel brace. But, if the symptoms continue to persist for a longer period of time then it is advised to visit a doctor at the earliest.