Browsing: Hand Wrist Pain

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome – Low Level Laser Approach

Introduction

A friend of mine, a dentist, came to me, numbness on her right hand as the chief complaint. That is a very specific injury to whatever who uses hand, especially the wrist, rhythmic and for a long time. It usually occurs in people who work as a dentist (like my friend), someone who works a lot using computer, or in Indonesia, during fast month, housewives suffer from Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) due to their repeated work of making “sambal “using” cobek “. Almost, CTS is one of ladies' disease.

Published data in Minnesota shows the ratio of CTS incidence among male: female = 5: 14. In Cipto Mangunkusumo Hospital, the number of CTS cases found was 238 in the year of 2001 and 149 cases in 2002. The patients' age ranges between 25 – 35 years old. In Washington, the chief complaint reported was tingling and pain.

Pathogenesis:

CTS is caused by impingement of the median nerve inside the carpal tunnel. As tension inside the tunnel increases, perineural edema occurs, and causes damage to the nerve. This event will release serotonin and prostaglandin, and adverse microcirculation. This is the mechanism which stimulate the pain.

Laser therapy:

I gave her diode laser (15 mW for 15 minutes) with trans-cutaneous application. The day after her first visit, she told me that after the treatment she felt an “uncomfortable sensation” in her injured hand. I decided to decrease the dosage of laser therapy to 10mW for 15 minutes. She felt comfortable with this regiment and could work as usual. Orthose also given to fixate the wrist at zero degree position.

Research

A research on CTS has been conducted at the Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Department in Cipto Mangunkusumo Hospital, Jakarta, Indonesia. The hypothesis was, “Application of plaque of Paris & Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) are more effective than plaster of Paris only for pain reduction in Carpal Tunnel Syndrome”. Is there any additional effect to plaster of Paris fixation by LLLT compared with fixation only in reducing Carpal Tunnel Syndrome pain? It was the question tried to be answered.

There were two groups, LLLT combined with plaster of Paris, and the other as control only using plaster of Paris.

The subjects were homogenous among those groups. It was conducted for a period of two weeks, and Visual Analog Scale (VAS) was used as an assessment for pain.

Conclusion: Application of plaque of Paris and Low Level Laser Therapy has an additional effect for pain reduction in comparison to plaster of Paris only

Discussion:

The effect of Low Level Laser Therapy as anti inflammatory and pain reliever worked in this case of CTS.

Acknowledgment:
This story is dedicated to Mrs. Hermina., A friend of mine who is such a beautiful dentist.

(Hi, Mrs Hermina, your visit to my office reminded me to share this kind of problem to others. Thank you)

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Carpal Tunnel Syndrome – Stopping the Pain

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a nerve entrapment disorder that is associated with significant pain and functional impairment of the fingers and hand. It is also quite common for this condition to refer pain up the median nerve pathway into the elbow, shoulder, upper back and neck.

Caused by an imbalance of the muscles that open, close, deviate and rotate the hand, results in biomechanical dysfunction and a joint imbalance, affecting the median nerve at the wrist junction. Severe cases of carpal tunnel syndrome can lead to muscle atrophy and deterioration of the median nerve when left untreated. It is the cause of significant disability worldwide and a subject of growing research in the medical and physical therapy communities. With costs to treat this disorder surpassing 60 billion annually, a common sense treatment approach is being taken by both private and federal communities.

There are many pathways to muscle imbalance in the hand, and considerable research has examined the pressure system surrounding the carpal canal. This work has shown that people with carpal tunnel syndrome have markedly increased pressure in the carpal canal in the hand following minor movement in the wrist that involve repetitive and / or static wrist and finger flexion. The longer these types of activities are performed, the greater the muscle imbalance develops and the more severe the symptoms become. As the finger and wrist flexor muscles that close the hand become more developed than their opposition extensor muscles that open the hand, the stronger muscles cause the bones to shift in the direction due to the “pulling” action of the stronger muscles and results in the impingement of the structures between. In this case, the median nerve is impinged. As the median nerve and flexor tendons now have to glide past each other as the fingers and wrist flex and extend while being in a state of impingement, there is increased friction which irritates the tendons and nerve and causes inflammation and swelling of these tissues. The result of this pressure and secondary swapping is a further increase in edema inside the median nerve. (Swelling is often thought of as the “cause” of carpal tunnel, when in fact it is the “result” of being irritated due to its state of being impinged between the flexor tendons inside the carpal tunnel which has also been reduced in size due to the collapse / shifting of the carpal bones.)

This entrapment produces a variety of painful symptoms. Indeed, carpal tunnel syndrome is characterized by paresthesia (also known as a pins and needles), numbness, tingling and a lack of coordination of the fingers along with muscle degeneration if left untreated, but it may also include pain, stiffness, tenderness, and waving, and many people with the condition notice themselves assuming a ginger stance at the computer keyboard or workstation. As symptoms progress and worsen over time, carpal tunnel syndrome generally includes muscle wasting, diminished strength, and a serious loss of overall dexterity and coordination.

Although the disorder is significantly debilitating, effective treatments do exist. Those with the most scientific support target symptoms by restoring muscle balance in the hand. Most often a combination of strengthening and lengthening exercises combined with supporting equipment is enough to improve symptoms dramatically.

By addressing carpal tunnel with conservative modes of treatment (Flextend), people can usually avoid the high failure rates associated with treatments like cortisone injections and surgery. Always be sure to consult with your physician and be sure that you have received a precise diagnosis of your condition, but if you do not agree with your doctor, seek a second or third opinion.

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The CAUSE of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Over the last decade and a half, carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) became the # 2 surgery performed in the United States. It was the “buzz” phrase that captured headline news in the '90's. Graphic illustrations of people in pain adorned the newspapers and even Gary Trudeau creator of the Doonesbury cartoon series did two cartoons on the subject. OSHA, Occupational Safety and Health Association, set ergonomic standards for companies to help curb the epidemic of CTS. There has been so much research done on this disorder, and labeled a disease, (it is not) and it still surprises me that they do not know the cause of it. Today it is still an issue and a very expensive one, and a surgery I believe, is not necessary in most cases.

If you have these symptoms, does this mean you have carpal tunnel syndrome?

Maybe not!

Symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome may include:

o loss of sense of touch

o tingling and numbness in your hand and fingers

o pain in your shoulder at night, pain in your elbow, or swelling in your wrist area

o loss of grip strength in your hand

o pain in your wrist when you have it stretched in an extreme position, such as bending your wrist pointing the fingers to the floor.

o dropping objects more often than usual

oa burning sensation in your wrist and hand area

o being unable to unscrew a jar lid

o more difficult to do tasks such as brushing your hair

The loss of your grip strength and not being able to use your hands without pain is a serious matter and should not be taken lightly. But, before you opt for an invasive procedure such as surgery, you may want to consider another alternative – A non-invasive approach with less down time in healing and dealing with the cause and not just the symptoms.

What is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is the entrapment and compression of the median nerve due to a structural and postural misalignment bought on by the overworked and over strained muscles of the upper body, arm, wrist and hand, which can lead to a muscle-strength problem.

oooAny previous neck injury or injury to the upper body can also further complicate symptoms and healing time.

oooAn additional component could be a systemic or a biochemical factor, which can bring on an inflammatory condition not involving repetitive movement.

Carpal tunnel syndrome causes numbness or tingling in your fingers or hand and may cause a pain from the wrist that seems to shoot into your forearm or palm. The pain may be worse at night. Carpal is from a Greek word that means “wrist” -and the carpal tunnel is just what it sounds like, a passageway or tunnel through your wrist that protects nerves and tendons. The median nerve, which affects feeling in your thumb and all your fingers except your little finger, passes through the carpal tunnel. When the tunnel becomes swollen, your median nerve is compressed. The key to an accurate diagnosis of carpal tunnel syndrome is that the little finger is not affected, because the median nerve is not connected to this finger.

Now that the definition has been said, lets discuss the cause of carpal tunnel syndrome.

A Healthy Body physically moves in space, in gravity, with daily stresses on the physical body. These stresses take the form of micro (small muscle movements) and macro (large muscle movements) and all normal. When it is subordinated to a higher degree of repetitive movements the risk factor increases for a musculoskeletal injury.

A Body that is overworked and over strained begins to weaker as fatigue, soreness, and pain develop in the musculature. Muscles that are becoming functionally weaker, and are feeling the brunt of the work, give out. Normal. Anatomically, when this occurs, the tendon attached to the muscle begins to feel the strain, and as it is attached to a bone, as tension increases, it may slowly begin to pull that bone / joint out of alignment. An inflammatory condition may develop called tendinitis. The result is a reduction in nerve conductivity to the muscle for normal function. And again, this is a normal course of events when you are healthy, and physically active. It is reversible.

The Unhealthy Body which is structurally misaligned, pain in the muscles, developing symptoms listed above, fatigued … and worn down, develops from years of neglect and lack of care.

Reason? Body Maintenance. Why? You were never taught how. You are a mechanical being moving parts that need to be oiled, lubed and grease, aligned and electrically sound. You perform mechanical maintenance on your car, why not your Body! It needs the same tender, loving care, so it will last longer. You can not throw it away or buy a new one when it falls apart. It is never too late to learn Body Maintenance. Learn how, and you can rid yourself of carpal tunnel pain without surgical intervention.

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Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Treatments – The Better Choice for Success

Studies of carpal tunnel syndrome show that when untreated, its output is poor, with many suffering for years without relief. Indeed, research on the natural history of the disorder indicates that patients with mild to moderate symptoms typically experience significant worsening in the first year that may extend for many years. Although many factors are linked to a poor course, bilateral impairment is a major predictor in a long-term negative exit of those suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome.

These findings speak to the importance of early intervention of carpal tunnel syndrome. There are numerous treatments available for carpal tunnel syndrome including invasive modalities such as open and endoscopic release surgery and cortisone injections, but most patients find it useful to begin with a conservative approach to therapy. This approach may involve rest or avoidance of exacerbating situations (eg, excessive typing). Treatment may also involve anti-inflammatory drugs designed to reduce swelling and tenderness.

It is rarely the case that the intervention techniques listed above are sufficient to treat carpal tunnel syndrome completely. Other interventions involve environmental modifications such as the therapeutic chairs and computer keyboard pads. In addition, wrist splinting is another popular treatment, but has shown to be a highly ineffective option as it puts undue pressure on the median nerve and allows existing muscle imbalances to worsen. (Note: A positive output has been shown when wrist braces are used for night use only in order to keep the wrist straight. / impingement of the median nerve.)

The most successful approach in eliminating carpal tunnel syndrome quickly and effectively is correcting muscle imbalances in the hand and forearm with simple therapeutic exercises. These exercises focus on stretching and lengthening the overused flexor muscles that flex (bend) the fingers and wrist in order to relieve compression of the median nerve, and the strengthening of the extensor muscles that extend (straighten) the fingers and wrist as the extensor muscles act as the main stabilizers for the hand when performing all gripping activities.

By strengthening and stretching the appropriate muscles, it is possible to correct the muscle imbalance that causes nerve entrapment within the carpal tunnel without having to resort to splints or braces, or having to rely on invasive treatments like cortisone injections or surgery which have a very low rate of success as shown below:

· Surgery: The average failure rate is 57% after following the patient from 1-day to 6-years. At least one of the following symptoms re-occurred during this time, pain, numbness, and tingling sensations.

· Steroid Injection: The FAILURE RATE for total elevation after a one-year follow-up is about 75.6% of all patients.

With conservative treatments showing a much higher rate of short-term success and with greater long-term relief, it is easy to see that non-invasive treatments are a much better choice. Remember to always talk with your primary care giver so that you may investigate the choice that fits your lifestyle best.

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How To Treat And Prevent Wrist Pain

The wrist is an unusual joint because stiffness or even fusion causes relatively little difficulty, while if it is wobbly and unstable there can not be real problems. The wrist provides the platform from which the fine motives of the fingers operate. It is essential that this platform be stable. The eight wrist bones form a rather crude joint that is very limited in motion compared with, for example, the shoulder, but which is strong, and stable. Almost no regular human activities require the wrist to be bent all the way back or all the way forward, and the fingers do not operate as well as when the wrist is fully flexed or fully extended.

The wrist platform works best when the wrist is bent upward just a little. When the wrist is in proper position, you can pull or push most efficiently. To illustrate this position, make a fist and put your thumb in the middle of the wrist. Looking down your arm, the thumb should be on an imaginary horizontal line going straight down the middle of your forearm.

The wrist is very frequently involved in rheumatoid arthritis, and the side of the wrist by the thumb is very commonly involved in osteoarthritis.

The “carpal tunnel syndrome” can cause pain at the wrist. In this syndrome, the median nerve is trapped and squeezed as it passes through the fibrous carpal tunnel in the front of the wrist. Usually the squeezing results from too much inflammatory tissue. The cause can be tennis playing, a blow to the front of the wrist, canoe paddling, rheumatoid arthritis, or many other activities that repeatedly flex and extend the wrist. In addition to wrist pain, this syndrome can cause pains to shoot down into the fingers or up into the forearm; usually there is a numb feeling in the fingers, as if they were sleep.

You can diagnose this syndrome pretty well yourself. The numbness in the fingers will not involve the little finger and often will not involve the half of the ring finger near the little finger. If you tap with a finger on the front of the wrist, you may get a sudden tingling in the fingers similar to the feeling of hitting your funny bone. Tingling and pain in the carpal tunnel syndrome may be worse at right or when the wrists are bent down.

The key to management of wrist pain is splinting. Since stability is essential and loss of motion is not as serious in the wrist as in other joints, the treatment strategy is a little different. Exercises to stretch the joint are not very important. The strategy is to rest the joint in the position of best function. Wrist splints are available at hospital supply stores and some drugstores. Any that fit you are probably all right. The splint will be of plastic or aluminum and the hand rest will cock your wrist back just a bit. You can put a cloth sleeve around the splint to make it more comfortable against your skin and wrap the splint on your arm gently with an elastic bandage to keep it in place. That's all there is to it. Wear it all the time for a few days, then just at night for a few weeks. This simple treatment is all that is required for most wrist flare-ups. Even the carpal tunnel syndrome is initially treated by splinting. But since nerve damage is potentially serious, give your doctor a call if you seem to have the carpal tunnel syndrome.

No major pain medication should be necessary. Aspirin and similar-strength medications are all right but probably will not help very much. If you are taking a prescribed anti-inflammatory drug be certain that you are taking it just as directed; sometimes a flare-up is simply due toadequate medication. If you know what triggered the pain, work out a way to avoid that activity. Common sense means listen to the pain message.

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Carpal Tunnel Symptoms

Do you wake up at night, with numbing fingers and hands? Do have pain shooting up the arms with a cramping sensation? If this is the case, you are exhibiting carpal tunnel symptoms.

Carpal tunnel symptoms appear differently in each person. Some might experience the pain at night sleeping while other experience pain when working with their hands. Not only people that work with computers or typing can acquire this condition but also, people that do a lot of dexterity work with their hands are at high risk for this condition.

The carpal tunnel itself is a small passageway from the arm to the bottom of the wrist. The nerve and tendons within the passage cause the hand to flex and bend. Nerves and tendons within the passage became compressed causing motor skills to weakened, and pain to the fingers and hand.

Carpal tunnel symptoms other than numb fingers and hands, could be cramping up the arm, pain in fingers or arm, a feeling of swollenness in the hand or fingers, a person's grip weaknesses, and sense of warmth or cold can go away.
Middle aged men are likely to get the condition, however women are 3 times more likely to develop this condition. Women going through menopause can have a high risk of getting carpal tunnel.

Heredity could be another cause of getting this type of condition. If close family member such as mom, dad, and grandsparents had or have the condition, the chances are soon next generation will have the same condition.

Certain health conditions can cause carpal tunnel symptoms. Thyroid disorders, diabetes, obesity and some types of arthritis will increase risk for this condition. People who smoke will have a higher risk factor with this condition than people who do not smoke. People who smoke will take a longer time to heal than non-smokers would take to heal.

With this condition, a person can apply heat to the wrist to help with pain, cool packs for swelling. Keep the arm, hand, and wrist immobile. A wrist splint can help this condition. A person would be able to still use the arm and hand with some mobility of the wrist. The splint will help keep the wrist straight, also helping the passage to open.

A person that has carpal tunnel symptoms should first check with a doctor to make sure a person has this condition. Other diseases and conditions can cause a person to have these types of symptoms. Once a person checks with their doctor and is diagnosed with the condition, the doctor and person can talk over the different therapies to use.

Carpal tunnel is a condition a person can live with and continue working. In some cases, a person may have to seek other employment, as this is only in certain cases. Taking care of a person's hands and wrist is important. Always give your hands and wrist a break.

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Hand Arthritis – Different Treatments

Hand arthritis is the most common form of arthritis that mainly affects the fingers. As in most forms of arthritis the joints became inflamed resulting in pain. Essentially, a joint is made up of two bones that are covered by cartilage and are conjoined together moving smoothly across each other. If this smooth surface becomes damaged or wears out over time, arthritis will result

Hand arthritis is specifically painful and debilitating due to the fact that hands have nineteen bones and eight small bones that has several small joints. The more common forms of hand arthritis include osteoarthritis, post-traumatic arthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis. Further causes of hand arthritis may include psoriasis, gout and infection.

Hand osteoarthritis is caused by wear and tear on the hand joints over time resulting in inflammation and pain. Normally it is a result of this wear and tear, however it can also be the result of a specific hand injury. Hand osteoarthritis arthritis generally develops either along the bottom of the thumb, the wrist, the end joint that is closest to the tip of the finger and the middle joint of the finger.

The most common symptoms of hand arthritis are pain, swelling and reduced movement resulting in diminished grip and pinch strength. The doctor or physician will also examine all other joints to help aid the diagnosis of hand arthritis. The doctor can also determine the severity of the hand arthritis by observing the clinical appearance of the hand. Further to this X-rays will be utilized to further identify the severity of hand arthritis by seeking potential bony outgrowths.

There are various treatments and forms of decreasing the pain of hand arthritis. Analgesic and anti-inflammatory medications will typically be the first treatment utilized for hand arthritis. Resting the hand is also critical in terms of re-habilitating the area- a hand or wrist support may be required to aid this re-habilitation.

Physical therapy for hand arthritis has also been proven to be very effective as a treatment option. There are specific exercises, which can help in loosing the stiffened joints caused by the hand arthritis. Steroids can also be injected locally into the affected area, however this is only a form of pain relief, and certainly not a long-term treatment option for hand arthritis.

Surgery is most certainly the last resort as a treatment option for hand arthritis . The doctor or physician will seriously evaluate the patient's health, age, weight and risks of complications before recommending hand surgery as a viable treatment option for hand arthritis.

Hand arthritis can be an extremely debilitating condition, however with proper diagnosis by your doctor or physician the symptoms can be effectively managed and rehabilitation can take place. Like most forms of arthritis early diagnosis is the key to aid recovery in hand arthritis.

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Conquering Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Do you feel tingling or numbness in your fingers or hand?

This may be a signal of developing carpal tunnel syndrome. Carpal tunnel syndrome is a painful progressive condition caused by compression of a key nerve in the wrist.
Try to start with conquering carpal tunnel syndrome to avoid surgery.

Try it by hand and wrist exercises with Gyro Exercise Ball. The Gyro Exercise Ball has been medically recommended as an ideal instrument by which to rehabilitate an injury to the hand, wrist, forearm or elbow.

Causes

Carpal tunnel is caused by increased pressure on a nerve entering the hand through the restricted space of carpal tunnel. There are many causes of carpal tunnel.

Heredity is the most important factor.

Hand use over time can play a role.

Repetitive motives of the hand and wrist

Hormonal changes related to pregnancy and menopause.

Medical conditions including diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis and thyroid gland imbalance.

Risk factors

Carpal tunnel syndrome can result from overuse or strain in certain job tasks that require a combination of repetitive, forceful and awkward or stressed motors of your hands and wrists.

If diagnosed and treated early, carpal tunnel syndrome can be relieved without surgery.

Symptoms

Symptoms usually begin gradually, without a specific injury and occurrence at any time.

– Pain radiating or extending from your wrist up your arm to your shoulder or down into your palm or fingers.

– A sense of weakness in your hands and tendency to drop objects.

– A constant loss of feeling in some fingers.

Conquer carpal tunnel syndrome by hand and wrist eexercise with a Gyro Exercise Ball.

A Gyro Exercise Ball can be used for exercise, therapy and sport.

It works isometrically to gently stress the damaged area in a perfectly smooth, even manner which can not be replicated by normal exercise therefore lending itself to the gentle rehabilitation of carpal tunnel syndrome, repetitive stress injuries and arthritic conditions.

It is also ideal for sports like Golf, Squash and all activities demanding power in the arms, hands and wrists. It is also great for musicians.

Surgery may be considered if carpal tunnel syndrome continues to bother you and you do not gain relief from nonsurgical treatment. You can avoid this by Conquering Carpal Tunnel Syndrome in terms of Hand and Wrist Exercise with Gyro Exercise Ball.

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Top 7 Tips To Relieve Wrist Pain

You may not realize just how important your wrists are until one of them gets hurt. There are basically two types of wrist injury. One is acute, such as a sprain or a fraction. The other is overuse, caused by the repetitive motion of activities such as typing. The overuse injury that most often affects the wrists is tendinitis. People who use their hands a lot such as carpenters, computer operators, musicians can develop tendinitis if the tendons in their wrists are not strong and flexible enough. Overuse can also affect the ulnar nerve, which runs along pinkie side of the wrist and hand. And it can cause tissues in the wrist to swell and put pressure on the median nerve, leading to carpel tunnel syndrome. Both conditions can produce tingling, numbness, and pain in the fingers and hands as well as in the wrists. Here are some tips that you can consider to adopt to treat wrist pain.

1. Build Some Muscles

You can prevent future wrist pain by strengthening the muscles in your forearms. It is recommended holding a 6-ounce can of tomato paste in each hand and flexing your wrists back and forth 15 to 20 times. Or you can simply squeeze a tennis ball in each hand. Squeeze the ball for 5 seconds and release, then repeat 12 to 15 times.

2. Ease Back Into It

A wrist that has been immobilized may become stiff from lack of use. Some gentle stretching can help restore flexibility. It is recommended pressing on a tabletop with the palm of your hand. Bend your wrist until you reach the angle of pain, then back off just a hair. By riding the edge of discomfort and stopping just before you feel pain, you are doing beneficial stretching. Hold this position or as long as you find comfortable, working up to 2 minutes. Repeat three to four times daily.

3. Treat It Gingerly

A compress made from ginger can draw out toxins and accelerate the healing process. To make the compress, simply boil some grated gingerroot, allow it to cool, place it in a moist washcloth, and lay the washcloth over your wrist. The washcloth should be as hot as you can tolerate. Leave it on for 15 to 20 minutes, and repeat every other hour.

4. Keep Still

For a more severe case of tendinitis, immobilizing the joint with an elastic wrist support may provide some relief. You will find these devices in drugstores and medical supply stores. It is recommended wearing one while you sleep, to prevent your wrist from twisting awkwardly as well as during your waking hours, when your wrist is in use. The support should keep your wrist in about 10-degree dorsiflex position. In other words, if your palm is facing downwards, your wrist should be bent slightly upward.

5. Put It On The Rocks

Ice is a vasoconstrictor. That means it decrees the blood supply in your wrist, which helps reduce any swelling. It is recommended putting ice cubes in a plastic bag, wrapping the bag in a towel, and applying the pack to your wrist for about 20 minutes. Repeat the treatment four to six times a day.

6. Raise Your Hand

Elevation is not as crucial for an injured wrist as for an injured ankle or knee. Still, it can help keep any swilling down. Just be sure to prop your wrist so that it is above heart level.

7. Turn On The Heat

Once any swapping subsides, or if your wrist simply feels stiff and achy, heat can help. It is recommended to follow these instructions. Rub vinegar on your wrist, cover it with plastic, then apply a heating pad wrapped in a towel for about 20 minutes. You can repeat this treatment every hour as needed.

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Top Tips To Treat And Prevent Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

What is the difference between Elton John and a computer operator? Give up? Well, all the piano players are a lot less likely to get carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS). If we typed, price-scanned, or sewed the way piano players tickle the ivories, wrists straight, hands and fingers almost level with the keyboard, this debilitating wrist injury could often be prevented. The carpal tunnel is a passageway that leads through your wrist. Nine tendons plus the median curve which feeds motor and sensory impulses to the thumb, index finger, third finger, and half of the ring finger run through this tunnel of bone and ligament. If you have CTS, the tissues in this tunnel swell, compressing the median nerve.

This pressure means that the median nerve can not translate electrical impulses from the brain as well as it should. Think of the median nerve as a radio or TV cable. If it stops sending a clear signal, you get static. Faulty signals from a compressed medical nerve can cause tingling, numbness, and pain in the fingers, wrist, and even the forearm. Many people think of CTS as an occupational hazard, caused by too much time at the computer. But any repetitive stress on the wrist such as needlepoint, steady driving, and even golf can trigger carpal tunnel syndrome. And continuous wrist-twisting is not the only culprit. The so-called passive form of CTS is caused by health conditions such as diabetes, thyroid disease, arthritis, and even pregnancy.

CTS may sound scary to some people. However here are some ways to find relief.

Put the ache on ice. Fill a plastic bag with ice, wrap it in a thin towel, and vigorously rub it over the top of your wrist. The ice helps reduce fluid retention around the ligament that covers the carpal tunnel, which reduces the pressure on the median nerve.

Keep your wrist in neutral. Wear a wrist splint. You will find wrist splints in any drugstore. Make sure that the splint you buy keeps your wrist absolutely straight. When you rest your splinted hand, palm up, on a table, it should lie flat, with your wrist in line with your forearm. Wear the splint at night, too. Many people with CTS flex their wrists when they sleep, irritating the median nerves.

Try B6. Take 50 milligrams of vitamin B6 twice a day. People with carpal tunnel syndrome tend to be deficient in this vitamin, which is associated with nerve function. Some people with CTS can get dramatic relief with B6. Nerves seem to respond to this specific vitamin, although we are not sure why. Bear in mind to consult your physician before taking this vitamin B6. High dosages of the vitamin can cause numbness in the feet and unco-regulation when walking.

Reach for the sky. Keep your hands above the level of your heart as often as you can. Accumulated fluid in your hands can increase the pressure on the median nerve. When you sit on your couch, for example, rest your elbows and hands on top of the backrest rather than keeping your hands in your lap. Also raise your hands two or three times a day for a few minutes to help prevent numbness and tingling.

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Don’t Let Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Become Debilitating

Imagine what life would be like if your hands did not work the way you are used to. Imagine if something as simple as brushing your teeth was painful; if something as routine as opening a jar lid was nearly impossible. This is what carpal tunnel sufferer's deal with every day.

When you have carpal tunnel syndrome, the median nerve that runs down your arm becomes irritated because of an unusual amount of pressure. It leads to pain, weakness, and numbness in your hand, especially in the thumb and index finger.

It is commonly believed that certain types of work that require repetitive movements of the arm and wrist can lead to carpal tunnel syndrome. The truth is the relationship between repetitive stress and carpal tunnel syndrome is unclear. We do know for sure that certain conditions put you at higher risk for carpal tunnel syndrome. Rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, or thyroid disorders all increase the risk that your median nerve will become inflamed. Alcoholism and wrist fractures can also cause carpal tunnel syndrome.

In many cases, mild carpal tunnel syndrome can be treated with a wrist brace. Sometimes the condition is even self-correcting. If it does persist, you could suffer from permanent nerve damage, so it is a good idea to consult with a doctor if you have been living with wrist pain and numbness for a long time. In extreme cases, your doctor may recommend surgery to relate the pressure on your nerve.

Preventative Measures are Best

An even better response to carpal tunnel syndrome is to take steps early on to relieve and eliminate your symptoms. As I mentioned above, often a simple wrist brace (available at your grocery or drug store) is sufficient to correct the condition. You can also try several other natural options.

One often-recommended treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome is vitamin B6. There is conflicting evidence regarding the effectiveness of vitamin B6 as a treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome. However, vitamin B6 is something your body needs anyway, so it does not hurt to begin taking a vitamin B-complex. It can take up to three months to notice a difference. Follow the dosage guide when taking a B-complex because some B vitamins can become toxic in high amounts.

Another potential treatment is the use of laser acupuncture. In this treatment an infrared laser is directed onto acupuncture points along the affected arm and hand. In one study, participants experienced a significant lessening of carpal tunnel symptoms that increased up to three years. 1 If you can find a natural solution that works effectively you'll save yourself the expense and pain of surgery. And of course there's no guarantee that surgery will have a positive result.

Your best defense to this crippling disease is to be aware of how you use your hands, wrists and arms. Never over strain these parts of your body in a continuous and repetitive exercise. And if you feel pain in your wrist up through your arm … please stop what you're doing and see a doctor in most cases.

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How To Eliminate The Pain of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Choosing a career as an accountant has spared me from most work related health problems. Atop my padded chair in a climate-controlled office, only an occasional paper cut or being punctured by a mechanical pencil stand as potential physical dangers. However, I have become painfully aware of some physical ailments that have affected me directly because of the way that I work. These ailments are known as “heel spurs” and “carpal tunnel syndrome.”

Fortunately, simply changing some habits and doing certain exercises have allowed me to overcome both of these ailments. This article deals with carpal tunnel syndrome, which is an ailment that is common to accountants and others we work with.

After a long day banging on a keyboard or calculator, the wrists and hands of many of us are literally throbbing. One of the worst cases I have seen was that experienced by a business owner client. He had actually gone so far as to have corrective surgery on one wrist and was ready to have it done on the other also. Even after the surgery, the pain seemed to be coming back. At this point, an acquaintance told him how to prevent the problem. The solution was to keep his wrist straight and the hands pointing downward whenever he typed. Once he followed this advice, his pain went away and with it, the need for more surgeries.

This seemed a little too easy. Sure, we have all seen workers wearing wrist splints, etc. I had one secretary who was one and yet was still in pain and ready to file a workers comp claim. The splint was not doing much good since she was not using it consistently and did not understand the theory behind it. However, if you train yourself to not wiggle your fingers without your wrist is straight or your hands are pointed downwards, you will eliminate the problem. When I first got into accounting, I did not have a keyboard in my office other than a calculator. Now, of course, there is a keyboard and mouse on every desk. Along with the new computers have come the complaints of sore wrists and hands. Personally, I felt only limited pain since I had not yet become computer dependent.

Once I heard the story from my client, I set out to test the theory, beginning with those suffering the most. I watched how they worked and immediately saw that they were bending back their hands as they were typing. By changing the work station, angling the keyboard or utilizing little wrist rests, the kink in the wrist was eliminated and with it the pain. One associate, however, kept complaining about his right wrist. Betraying how long ago this was, I need to explain that he was also the one who had migrated to using the Windows software ahead of the rest of us. As a result, he was a constant mouse clicker. By developing a makeshift wrist rest for his mouse hand, we were able to eliminate the source of this pain also.

Nowadays, everyone in my office uses a large marble type mouse so that they have their wrists above instead of behind the device. Interestingly, ergonomic desks and chairs are useless if the issue is not clearly understood and these tools are not used to address the underlying problem. For example, I keep my keyboard on top of my full sized desk, causing me to reach up and over the keyboard and eliminating the problem. Actually, when the wrist is straight, people can generally pound a keyboard forty hours a week and not experience pain.

Of course, all of this makes perfect sense. Piano teachers have always demanded that their students practice and play with straight wrists. Bending the wrist back even a little and then furiously wiggling our fingers is unnatural and causes pressure on the Median Nerve. Keeping this up for an extended length of time will result in excruciating pain. So there you have it- a commonsense solution to a physical ailment that is common to office workers such as me. Of course, if this approach does not work, you will need to see a doctor. However, a mystery and frustration for me is that doctors seem eager to treat pain without educating patients as to how to prevent its cause in the first place.

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Eliminate Carpal Tunnel Syndrome in Five Easy Steps

Everyone is too busy to read “how to” articles anymore – the reason for my creating of this top-5 list for eliminating Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

If someone has Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, I hope they spend the three minutes it will take to read this article. If they do not then they do not deserve to get any better, and believe me, I've a lot of people claiming they have Carpal Tunnel Syndrome but spend more time whining than doing anything to correct the condition … and therefore in my opinion, they deserve to suffer.

It is this same mentality that leads to Carpal Tunnel surgery. They talk, whine and complain but do not do anything to get better because they want someone to make it go away for them, the reason surgery and splints exist. It would just be too much if a person had to apply some form of effort regarding their own health and safety by performing research and implementing the necessary steps to initiate relief!

Okay, enough of the sarcasm, let's get down to the business of quickly and effectively eliminating Carpal Tunnel. And we all know people want quick and easy no matter what it is: Driving and eating vs. sitting at home with the family and eating, a car wash vs. using the hose in the driveway, email and text messaging instead if writing an actual letter, pills vs. a change in diet and exercise and the list goes on. The need for ease of use can be applied to a variety of muscle imbalances and repetitive strain injuries in the upper extremity; one of them known by everyone as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome or CTS for short.

Carpal tunnel syndrome is everywhere so how does someone get rid of it as quickly and easily as getting a hamburger at the drive-up window? Here is my top 5 ways (drive-up window) for individuals to prevent or eliminate Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

1. Flextend / Restore Exercises: I really can not say enough about this simultaneous form of active exercise and stretching. If this does not work, which is not too likely, something else may be necessary or the co9ndition may not even be Carpal Tunnel. Other disorders are often misdiagnosed as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Surgery may be the final alternative, but these active exercises and stretches are certainly the first thing to try, and most often the only thing you will need!

2. Stretching Routine: Stretching is extremely important in eliminating Carpal Tunnel Syndrome as it helps correct any existing muscle imbalance, stabilizes the joint and reduces compression of the median nerve. The key here is to stretch the muscles on the front of your hands and wrists. (The wrist and forearm flexors.)

3. Back Exercises: Many people have the hanging head and rounded shoulders, which equals poor posture. Poor post increases the chances of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome as it transfers stress to the hands and wrists more instead of allowing the shoulders and back to bear most of the workload.

4. Ergonomics: No matter what a person does for a living, they need to make sure the job fits their physical build. Customized workstations, ergonomic tools, task rotation and other strain reducing techniques must be used to prevent undo stress to workers. If a person is functioning in a non-ergonomic situation, they need to talk to their supervisor about implementing an ergonomics program to reduce injuries and increase productivity.

5. Massage Therapy and Rest: Relaxation massage is great as an adjunct to these other modes, but more specific site-therapy should be performed for those already experiencing symptoms of CTS. Working directly on the tight wrist and forearms flexor muscles can reduce compression of the median nerve and associated symptoms. Rest is also a good idea. People who are always on the go are often more tense and subject to injury.

Note: Be sure to consult with your health care practitioner before implementing exercise or therapy programs. But, if you do not feel that they are addressing your needs, get a second or even a third opinion!

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Hand Arthritis – The Inconvenient Truth

One of the most inconvenient of all types and forms of arthritis is when it occurs in your hands. It is incredible how much we use our hands for everything and having no pain in our hands is something we all simply take for granted.

Have you ever felt really ill and remembered a time when you felt healthy and just wished that you could feel like this once more? We all take good health for granted and it is not until we do not have this well being, that we miss it! Well arthritis in the hands is a very similar concept. When your joints ache and you are suffering from each small movement as your fingers are swollen or stiff or just plain sore, then arthritis becomes an every day challenge. Just doing up a button or picking something up can present a huge challenge.

When you consider how much we use our hands and how much we rely on our hands, if wear and tear causes degenerative types of arthritis, it is no wonder really. All joints get used but we use our hands probably more than any other joints on our entire body!

My mother-in-law fell over in her kitchen and fractured both her wrists. Now this has nothing much to do with arthritis in hands other than the potential of getting arthritis through traumatic progress but just to prove how inconvenient it is not to be able to use your hands, she had to move in with family members until her wrists had healed some weeks later, as even picking up the kettle to boil water so that she could make a cup of coffee presented a problem!

Prevention is always better than cure, so try to take care of your hands, treat them with care feed yourself the right nutrients through supplements and you will always have good use of them. You will never know how much you take for gifted having pain free joints, until the day they ache!

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Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Recovery

If you're one of the millions of carpal tunnel syndrome sufferers in the world, you know how much it can affect your daily routine. You could be working at your desk and all of a sudden a sharp pain shoots up your wrist. Or maybe you're at home having trouble preparing dinner because there is a numbness in your left hand that makes it hard for you to hold a plate.

Here are five remedies for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Recovery:

1.The first and foremost thing you on your way to conquering carpal tunnel syndrome is rest the hand that is suffering from carpal tunnel pain. Suspend activity that puts a lot of pressure on the wrists. Alternately you can use your other hand to preform the functions. Ice the afflicted hand to reduce inflation.

2.Wear a splint or brace. Preferably wear the brace / splint during activities where the carpal tunnel symptoms flare up. We wear the brace / splint at night when you go to sleep is also an effective method to conquering carpal tunnel syndrome since your wrist is usually bent at night further aggravating your carpel tunnel nerves. Splints and braces can be unconformable to wear but they can relieve pain if worn for 2 weeks.

3.Take some over the counter inflammatory medicine such as aspirin or ibuprofen. Make sure the medicine is anti inflammatory as they target the infection in the nerves in your carpal tunnel. Pain relievers only temporary relieve pain; they do not put down the inflammation in your carpal tunnel nerve.

4.Do some stretches and exercises. Try stretching your wrist backwards away from your body. Stretching each finger away from the body will also help. Pulling on each finger will also help in conquering carpal tunnel syndrome pain.

5.Cortisol / steroid injections. While this method is typically less invasive than surgery, it still requires a visit to a doctor's office. These injections typically provide temporary relief as they reduce the inflammation in the carpal tunnel. This method should be combined with method one of this article.

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