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Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

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woman with carpal tunnel holding arm in pain

A CHIROPRACTIC APPROACH TO CARPAL TUNNEL SYNDROME

What is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome? Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is an ailment that is characterized by weakness, tingling, and numbness in the hand. The disorder is caused by pressure on the median nerve the runs from your elbow through your wrist.

The median nerve works with the tendons in your arm to control the movement of your thumb and fingers (except the pinky). It enters your hand through a space in your wrist called the carpal tunnel.

When the nerve becomes compressed, the condition is called Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.There’s good news Though! Patients who suffer from Carpal Tunnel Syndrome can greatly benefit from the chiropractic treatments and therapies we offer at Broadway AT Yew Chiropractic & Massage.

WHAT ARE SOME OF THE COMMON CAUSES OF CARPAL TUNNEL SYNDROME?

There are several different factors, conditions and causes of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Some of them arE controllable by you, and some of them are the result of some other conditionS:

Gender

vectors of male and female symbols

How does gender play a role in Carpal Tunnel Syndrome? Although it is unknown as to exactly why women are more likely to develop Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, scientists have estimated that woman are three times more likely to get it than men.
Scientists believe that because a woman’s wrist bone is much smaller than a man’s, it creates a tighter space in which the nerves and tendons have to pass.

REPETITIVE STRESS

man grabbing his wrist due to overuse of computer mouse

Repetitive stress on the forearm and wrist can lead to a compression on the median nerve.  Certain activities like typing and mousing and sports are common causes because both involve doing repetitive movements of the wrists.

 

 

Injury

man getting injured wrist wrapped by doctor

Any type of injury to the forearm or wrist can have a negative impact on the median nerve.  Injuries can cause swelling and inflammation, which can lead to a compression of the nerve, or restriction of the carpal tunnel.

Bursitis and tendonitis

hand with red area highlighting carpal tunnel

Bursitis and tendonitis have been linked to the repetitive motions that can also cause Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

 

Who Is At Risk Of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?

Anyone who performs work or activities that cause the same repetitive movements of the arm and wrist is at risk of developing Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.  As well, if improper posture occurs during these types of activities, it can increase the risk.  For example, if a typist has poor posture and their hands aren’t positioned correctly (in an ergonomic fashion), the increased pressure and stress on the median nerve can lead to Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.


HOW IS CARPAL TUNNEL SYNDROME DIAGNOSED?

Diagnosis of carpal tunnel syndrome involves a variety of tests and questions.  As noted, posture plays an important role in the condition, as well as daily activities at work and play.  A physical exam will be performed to look at the hands and wrists for the telltale signs of carpal tunnel syndrome (swelling, tenderness, warmth, numbness, tingling etc.).  In some cases, blood and other types of tests may be done to rule out other conditions that could be causing the symptoms.

HOW IS CARPAL TUNNEL SYNDROME TREATED?

The key to resolving carpal tunnel syndrome is early diagnosis and treatment.  There are several treatment options that can include one or more of the following:

man wearing wrist support

Splinting

Many patients find that wearing a wrist splint helps with the pain of carpal tunnel syndrome.  As well, a splint will help protect the median nerve and allow the carpal tunnel to recover.

woman with handful of drugs

Drugs

As always, our Vancouver chiropractors take a natural path to healing, but in extreme cases, drugs such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories (ibuprofen) can help ease the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome.  In more severe cases, stronger drugs such as cortisone may be needed.

woman receiving an arm massage

Massage

The Registered Massage Therapists at Broadway AT Yew Chiropractic & Massage can perform special techniques to the wrist and forearm to help loosen the muscles and reduce compression of the median nerve.

Chiropractic

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome patients will greatly benefit from the following chiropractic techniques applied to the wrists and forearms, and also in other areas of the body to help improve posture and flexibility:

  • Chiropractic manipulation
  • Mobilization
  • Stretching exercises
  • Strengthening exercises

Our Vancouver chiropractors have worked on several patients suffering from Carpal Tunnel Syndrome with highly successful results. If you’re reading this section of our website because you suffer from Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, put our years of experience and proven techniques to work for you.

HOW CAN I LOWER MY RISK OF CARPAL TUNNEL SYNDROME?

There are several things besides exercises and stretching that you can do yourself at home to help improve your symptoms of carpal tunnel:

man holding up a take a break sign

REST

Give your hands a rest every thirty minutes or so when performing activities that place stress on the forearms and wrists.

woman using tablet computer

AVOIDING REPETIVE STRESS INJURIES AND ACTIVITIES

If possible, avoid doing the activities that worsen the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome. If you spend extended periods of time on a computer, try cutting back if possible.

hand-splint-carpal-tunnel

Preventitive Splinting

If you must perform repetitive tasks such as typing, wearing a splint at all times can help reduce your risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome.

WHAT IS THE RECOVERY PERIOD FOR CARPAL TUNNEL SYNDROME?

Recovery depends on the severity of the condition, and the steps you take to improve your symptoms.

man spelling timeout with letters

Remember to take breaks!

splint beside a computer keyboard

Use support if needed!

CARPAL TUNNEL SYNDROME SUMMARY

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a condition that is caused by compression of the median nerve and carpal tunnel within the wrists. While drugs and rest can be beneficial in treating the condition, at Broadway AT Yew Chiropractic & Massage, we offer natural treatment alternatives that will not only improve your Carpal Tunnel Syndrome symptoms, but will also improve your overall health.

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