Most people have heard of carpal tunnel syndrome, but may not realize that they may be suffering from this issue. This syndrome refers to pressure put on the nerves that pass through the carpal tunnel in the wrist. Symptoms include pain in the forearm, wrist and hand, as well as numbness, weakness and tingling. If you have been suffering from issues in your hand or wrist, you may have carpal tunnel syndrome.
Causes of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Carpal tunnel syndrome has been linked to work place injury for many years, especially since the emergence of the computer. Repetitive motion of the wrist and hand is a common factor in causing carpal tunnel issues, which typing is well known to cause. Inflammation or swelling can narrow the carpal tunnel, causing debilitating symptoms. However, work injuries are not the only causes.
Anything that causes inflammation in the wrist may result in carpal tunnel syndrome. Some other factors include pregnancy, arthritis, hypothyroidism and diabetes. It also can be a combination of these different factors.
Treatment for carpal tunnel depends on the severity and the cause. In many cases, relieving the inflammation in the wrist with rest, ice and anti-inflammatory medications can relieve the symptoms. However, in more severe cases, other treatment may be needed. While there are surgical options, many people prefer to try non-surgical treatments first. One option is undergoing physical therapy.
Physical therapy can help relieve pain through strengthening and stretching the muscles and tendons in the forearm and wrist. There are also modifications that can be made to reduce pressure on the wrist, helping relieve symptoms and prevent further damage.
If you have been having pain, numbness or weakness in your wrist or hand, see your doctor for diagnosis. If you have carpal tunnel syndrome, consider seeking the help of a hand physical therapist for treatment.
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