Home Health & beauty Carpal Tunnel Relief Strategies Through Physical Therapy

Carpal Tunnel Relief Strategies Through Physical Therapy

by Syed Qasim
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Carpal tunnel syndrome is not just uncomfortable, it is inconvenient and can interfere with work and life activities. If you have experienced the signature symptoms of numbing and tingling in the hands or wrists it’s time to visit a medical practitioner to learn if physical therapy is the right approach for you. 

Hand Comfort Techniques

Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by over-compression of the median nerve in the wrist. There are myriad reasons for too much compression, including the following:

  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Repetitive motions in the hands and wrist

Some factors increase your chance of getting carpal tunnel syndrome, such as being a female, injury to the wrist, or having a family member with small carpal tunnels. 

Performing carpal tunnel exercises can alleviate some symptoms and help you avoid carpal tunnel surgery. Try these exercises;

  1. Finger stretches – Stretch your fingers far apart and then relax them four times.
  2. Wrist rotations – Bend your wrists up, down, left, and right four times.
  3. Thumb stretches – Push your thumb back with the opposite hand four times.
  4. Wrist flexor stretches – Hold your arm out straight, horizontally, palm up. With the opposite hand pull your fingers down to the floor. Hold for 30 seconds and repeat on the other arm.

If your wrists feel particularly stiff during any of these exercises, apply heat for 15 minutes before you begin and use a cold pack for 20 minutes after you finish.

Restoring Wrist Mobility

Restoring full wrist mobility will likely need medical intervention. The first call you make should always be to a Redmond physical therapy practice. A licensed PT can assess the extent of the carpal tunnel syndrome and create an exercise plan to help you get started. The first exercises should be done in the office under PT supervision. After you become more experienced, you can continue the exercises at home.

In some cases, surgery may be required to undo the damage. Your PT may recommend you consult a surgeon if your symptoms include;

  • The inability to pinch, grasp, or grab
  • Numbness or tingling that has lasted without relief for six months or more
  • Chronic pain in the wrists
  • Braces, stretches and exercises, and corticosteroids have not had an effect

Surgery can be either endoscopic or open. The doctor will cut the ligament surrounding the carpal tunnel to relieve the pressure. Even after the ligament heals and comes back together, it will leave more room for the median nerve.

The Rise of Carpal Tunnel

One of the costs of modern living appears to be an increase in carpal tunnel syndrome. As more people work jobs that demand repetitive motions, such as typing or line work, the demand for physical therapy has risen.

If helping others regain their mobility and ease their pain appeals to you, physical therapy could be a great occupational path. Just search for “physical therapy jobs near me” to find the wealth of opportunity that awaits you.

Talk to a physical therapist today to learn more about your options.

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