Are you suffering from painful wrists and hands? It could be carpal tunnel syndrome. Certain activities can put you at greater risk for developing carpal tunnel syndrome, but before you visit a Chandler hand doctor for treatment options, there are things you can do to avoid carpal tunnel.
What is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?
A pinched nerve in the wrist can cause pain in the wrist, hand and arm which is known as carpal tunnel syndrome. The pain is usually associated with numbness and tingling in the hand and arm as well. This happens to be very common, with a reported 3 million cases each year.
What are the Symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?
You will usually know right away if you are experiencing carpal tunnel syndrome.
– Pain at the base of the wrist that could run down through the hand and up through the arm
– Numbness in the wrist and fingers
– Weakness in the hand, making it difficult to grasp things
– Tingling in the wrist, hands and fingers
What are the Main Causes of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?
Since millions of people experience carpal tunnel syndrome each year, there are a few different causes of it.
Main causes include:
– Wrist anatomy (it could just be genetics)
– Underlying health issues such as thyroid or diabetes
– Repetitive hand issue (patterns of hand use during sports or work such as typing or writing)
– Improper hand positions during activities
What Can I Do to Avoid Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?
Even though you may not be able to completely prevent carpal tunnel syndrome due to genetics or health issues, there are some things you can do to prevent it from getting worse.
Make it a habit to practice these tips to prevent carpal tunnel syndrome:
– Sleep with wrists held straight
– When using tools or playing sports, always hold your hand straight and use proper movements
– Avoid flexing or curling repeatedly
– Decrease any activity that requires strong grasping
– Take frequent breaks from activities that require repetitive hand use such as typing or writing
– Always stretch wrists and arms before exercise
If you have done what you can at home to prevent carpal tunnel syndrome and are still experiencing pain, you will want to visit a hand surgeon to discuss your treatment options. You will want to try to rest and apply ice to find relief. But if severe enough, you may need another treatment or possibly surgery.