Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a serious and painful disorder that affects the hand and wrist. There are many carpal tunnel causes, whether it’s from working at a desk for long hours, playing sports, or holding that video game controller for long periods of time, the repetitive motions that come with these activities can have a severe impact on your hand and wrist.
Symptoms often include a numbness or tingling sensation in the fingers on the mild end and significant discomfort limiting the use of your hand on the severe end.
Understanding Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
So, what exactly is causing the pain? After all, isn’t the hand and wrist designed to perform these repetitive actions over and over? The main culprit is something called the median nerve. When that becomes compressed, that’s when the discomfort begins. The compression comes from an abundance of pressure on the nerve.
If you are experiencing any such pain or discomfort such as what has been described, you will need to administer some form of treatment in a reasonable amount of time. Allowing the condition to persist in the hopes that it will correct itself is not a good idea. In fact, the chances of it getting worse – a lot worse – are much more likely and that will result in more persistent and intense discomfort and pain.
The good news is that you have some options at your disposal for treating the issue before it gets too bad. In the worst CTS cases, invasive surgery is often required to correct the problem. But your situation may not warrant such a solution.
Treating your carpal tunnel woes can be done with some of the simplest remedies. Exercises are a good start, where you take a few minutes out of your day to flex your wrists and move your fingers to reduce the undue pressure you are placing on the median nerve.
Another good option that you might want to implement alongside exercise is ice. Inflammation is a common symptom that comes with that pain and discomfort. Applying some ice to the affected area can be extremely effective in alleviating all of these symptoms. If you are experiencing any of the signs of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, take a break and place some ice to your hand or wrist. Cold water can be just as helpful. Expose the area to cold for about 10 to 15 minutes once an hour.
Wearing a wrist splint can also help manage the proper alignment of your wrist, which is key to staving off the symptoms of carpal tunnel. You can elect to wear the splint during the day or night, it’s up to you. But consider the splint as a useful tool for treatment.
Painkillers are good for managing pain but you should be careful you’re not relying on them too much. You want to target the source of the problem, not merely mask the symptoms. But if you do elect to take something for the pain, reach for ibuprofen or naproxen. These are both anti-inflammatories, so they will reduce the swelling that can come with this condition.