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Treatments for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

 

Conventional treatment

For those individuals whose symptoms are mild, simply taking more breaks to rest their hands while at work may help alleviate the disorder.  Others may simply need to apply cold packs to reduce the swelling.  For others, whose symptoms are more severe and arenít help with these 

simple remedies, face other therapies.

 

Conventional medicine offers two distinct categories of help:  surgical and nonsurgical.  Most individuals with carpal tunnel donít require surgery.  Their symptoms can be effectively relieved through one of three methods.

 

The first method is to simply hold the wrist still during the night.  This involves the placement of a wrist splint.  The purpose of this is to relieve the night time symptoms of tingling and numbness that may be keeping you awake.  This is an option Ė and more likely to be successful Ė if you experience mild to moderate symptoms for less than a year.

 

If your particular case of carpal tunnel syndrome involves inflammation, then your health care practitioner may recommend nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs Ė commonly referred to as NSAIDs.  These may help in alleviating the pain associated with this condition as well as the swelling. If no swelling is present, itís highly unlikely that this class of drugs will work for you.

 

Your health care practitioner may decide that your case of carpal tunnel syndrome would benefit from the administration of corticosteroids.  If this is the case, sheíll probably inject this passageway with a corticosteroid, like cortisone, in order to relieve your pain.  This specific technique works because it decreases inflammation, and reduces the pressure on the median nerve.  Donít be surprised if your health care practitioner doesnít offer any you any oral corticosteroids.  This type doesnít appear to be as effective as those given through injection.

 

If your case of carpal tunnel syndrome persists, then your health care practitioner may feel that surgery is the most effective option for you.  Your personal health care practitioner will set you up with an appointment for a surgeon.  This professional may use one of several techniques in treating you.  Whatever method he uses, though, heíll need to cut the ligament thatís pressing on your nerve.

 

In some cases, the surgery itself can be performed with an endoscope.  This is a telescope-like device that has a tiny camera attached to it. It allows the surgeon to view inside the passageway itself and actually perform the surgical procedure through small incisions heís made on your hand or wrist.  In other cases, the surgery involves actually cutting the palm of your over the area of the carpal tunnel is located and then release the nerve.

 

For many people, surgery provides the relief theyíve been searching for.  However, it might be that you may experience some residual numbness, pain, stiffness or even weakness following this procedure. 

 

Immediately following surgery, your use of your limb may be limited.  These limitations could last from several days to several weeks, depending on your specific conditions.

 

Natural Treatments

 

None of those conventional treatments appeals to you?  Not interested in the side effects of any of those medications?  Not really thrilled about surgery?  Canít say we blame you. You may be more interested in finding relief through more natural means, then.

 

There are plenty of alternatives available, from acupuncture to nutritional supplements to herbs.  You just need to search a little to discover which ones fit your specific needs.

 

You might want to try something as simple as yoga or other relaxation techniques.  They may help ease that chronic pain. Yoga is especially good as the various postures associated with it are specifically designed to strengthen, stretch and balance each joint in your upper body.

 

But donít stop with that.  Keep searching for some type of treatment that suits you.  You may benefit from a visit to a chiropractor.  You may find that heat therapy or a massage helps your symptoms.

 

Donít over look supplementation with vitamins, either.  Youíll especially want to investigate the use of B vitamins.  They have a long history of benefiting individuals with carpal tunnel syndrome.

 

Try starting with B6.  It has a long history of helping the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome.  Some individuals have found relief simply by taking 100 mg of this nutrient three times a day. It appears to reduce the inflammation of the disorder.

 

Some nutritionists also recommend increasing your bodyís intake of Omega-3 fatty acids.  They suggest supplementing with at least 1,500 mg daily.  They also say that you may take as much as 3,000 mg a day with no ill effects.

 

Herbal remedies that have been known to help individuals suffering with carpal tunnel syndrome include curcumin.  Herbalists suggest that you take 250 to 500 mg a day.  You may also want to try using St. Johnís wort.  This herb is usually associated with relieving depression, although herbalists say that it may also help reduce the inflammation and pain of carpal tunnel syndrome.

 

Wild yam is still another excellent choice3 that many people have found to relieve their symptoms of this nerve disorder.  You can take this orally, as a pill, capsule or a tablet, or you can drink this as a tea.  If you drink wild yam tea, try to drink three cups daily.

 

Be careful though in using herbs to relieve the pain and inflammation.  You need to consult with your personal health care practitioner before embarking on any herbal program.  This ensures that the herbs youíre planning on using wonít interfere or produce any adverse side effects with any medications Ė prescription or over-the-counter Ė youíre currently using.

 

You may also want to consult with a professional herbalist before you make any decisions on the herbs you might take.  She can help you decide exactly which ones may work best for your particular symptoms and circumstances.


Exercises for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Here are some graphics of exercises used to relieve pain for mile to moderate cases of carpal tunnel syndrome.

 

 


Note: Some statements in this article may not be approved by the FDA. This article is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as professional medical advice.

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