In the new era of computers, more Americans than ever are going to work
at an office and perform all their duties on a desktop computer. While
this might promote productivity, it also promotes an unforeseen consequence:
carpal tunnel syndrome. Usually called just carpal tunnel, this condition
manifests as numbness, tingling, or pain in the hand, arm, or wrist caused
by pinched and sore nerves. One of the leading causes of carpal tunnel
is extended periods of time typing on a non-ergonomic keyboard.
Each year, millions of Americans will be diagnosed with carpal tunnel.
Despite its commonality, it remains a condition that is difficult to treat.
Some people undergo complicated and risky surgery, and others begin prescription
medication regimens that last the rest of their lives and can cause side
effects. What many do not know is that
physical therapy can provide great benefits and alleviate symptoms, and many therapy options
can be done right in the home.
Four things you can do at home to curb or reduce carpal tunnel symptoms are:
Wrist splint: If your carpal tunnel pain is persistent or moderate, you can consider
wearing a wrist splint throughout the day or at night. A wrist splint
will help keep your wrist in a natural position to relieve joint and nerve pressure.
Ice: Many mild forms of pain or irritation caused by nerve damage can be temporarily
alleviated by an ice pack. Once an hour, put ice on your wrist for 10
minutes. You should not place ice directly against your skin, as this
can cause tissue damage; only use ice packs intended for medical functionality.
Rest: The moment you start noticing pain or numbness in your hands, stop whatever
activity you are doing and take a brief rest. This might be the right
time to ice your wrist if you haven’t already. If the pain continues
once you do, you may want to speak to your employer, assuming you are
working at an office computer, about different options, such as using
Stretch: You can use gentle, gradual stretches throughout the day but especially
in the morning and at night to strengthen your hands, wrists, and forearms.
You should never perform any stretch that causes you to experience pain,
even slight. If you do not know what stretches are safe for you, talking
to a physical therapist can help.
At ProFysio, our Aberdeen physical therapists are highly-experienced in
strength and conditioning techniques, and other physical therapy options. We can help you understand options
that may help relieve your carpal tunnel syndrome at the source. It is
also believed that high levels of stress can worsen carpal tunnel and
other conditions originating from damaged nerves. Simply enrolling in
a massage therapy schedule at our facility can roll stress off your shoulders
and bring about a general feeling of improvement.
Call us at 732.333.6360 to
schedule your consultation. We accept most insurance plans!