One of the most popular alternative treatments for carpal tunnel syndrome is exercise, especially yoga. Many people find that exercises that strengthen or stretch the hands and arms can help reduce their symptoms. But be aware that rest is an important part of therapy for carpal tunnel syndrome, and some exercises may worsen the condition; make sure you speak to your doctor before beginning an exercise program. Other relaxation techniques, acupuncture, and ultrasound therapy are sometimes also used, though their effectiveness has yet to be conclusively proven. Vitamin B-6 supplements may also help control symptoms.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Treatment
1 AnswerNatural Medicines answered
Yoga: Yoga therapy has been studied for carpal tunnel syndrome, but it is not clear if there are beneficial effects. Further research is needed before a conclusion can be made.
Yoga is generally considered to be safe in healthy individuals when practiced appropriately. Avoid some inverted poses with disc disease of the spine, fragile or atherosclerotic neck arteries, risk for blood clots, extremely high or low blood pressure, glaucoma, detachment of the retina, ear problems, severe osteoporosis, or cervical spondylitis. Certain yoga breathing techniques should be avoided in people with heart or lung disease. Use cautiously with a history of psychotic disorders. Yoga techniques are believed to be safe during pregnancy and breastfeeding when practiced under the guidance of expert instruction (the popular Lamaze techniques are based on yogic breathing). However, poses that put pressure on the uterus, such as abdominal twists, should be avoided in pregnancy.
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1 AnswerDr. Darria Long Gillespie, MD , Emergency Medicine, answeredA wrist splint is a hard structure that's used to prevent you from moving your wrist. Wrist splints are typically used if you've had a fracture to one of the bones of your wrist/hand/arm, or another injury for which you need to keep the wrist immobile. Sometimes, if you've just broken a bone, the ER will put on a splint, but not a full cast. That's because your arm could likely swell over the next couple of days, and having a cast all the way around your arm in the first 48-72 hours would make that very painful. The ER will have you follow-up with an orthopedic surgeon, who may then place a cast.
3 AnswersIf you have carpal tunnel syndrome, surgery can help treat its symptoms. The carpal tunnel is an area in the wrist that everyone has. It's a space that's surrounded by bones and a ligament and has tendons and a nerve inside. Over time, some people's tendons can become thick, exerting pressure on the nerve. This gives people the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome, such as tingling, numbness, pain or a loss of strength in their hands. Carpal tunnel surgery releases the pressure on the carpal tunnel, taking the pressure off the nerve so it can recover.
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Please note, the information contained on this website is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of a qualified health care provider if you have questions regarding your medical condition or before starting any new treatment. In the event of a medical emergency always call 911 or proceed to your nearest emergency care facility.
Exercises alone usually don't help the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome -- in fact, they may make symptoms worse! Sometimes, doctors may recommend certain wrist or hand exercises or physical therapy, but not as a primary treatment. Rest, changing activities, splinting or bracing, medications, or surgery are among the standard treatments.
1 AnswerBoston Women's Health Book Collective , Administration, answered
If you do develop symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome, you can try some home treatments:
- When you go to bed at night, make a "nest" for yourself with pillows that tip you slightly to one side and support your arms at your sides but slightly elevated.
- If you find that you curl your hands up during the night, try using supportive wrist splints, which you can buy in most drugstores; they will hold your wrists in a neutral position while you sleep.
- Several times a day, exercise your wrists and hands by touching each of the fingers on the affected hand, one after another, to the thumb of that hand.
If carpal tunnel syndrome becomes severe, it may help to see a physical or occupational therapist and be fitted for custom wrist braces or have other medical treatment. Talk with your health care provider if you are having difficulty sleeping or doing your daily activities due to carpal tunnel symptoms.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can help treat the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome. These are over-the-counter drugs, like ibuprofen and aspirin, that can reduce pain and inflammation caused by carpal tunnel syndrome. Another treatment option that's available over-the-counter is a wrist splint. Splinting can help keep your wrist in a stable, neutral position, especially overnight.
2 AnswersDr. Rachel Rohde, MD , Orthopedic Surgery, answeredOral medications usually are not helpful for carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms. Corticosteroid injections right into the carpal tunnel are thought to decrease inflammation. These generally are given by hand surgeons who are very familiar with the anatomy in the hand and wrist and can offer relief for people who have had symptoms only for a short period of time.
10 AnswersDr. Michael Roizen, MD , Internal Medicine, answeredTo ease the discomfort if you have carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS), immobilize your wrist with a splint when you can, including during sleep. Also, take anti-inflammatories, such as aspirin, and ice your wrist morning and night. If the problem persists, noninvasive endoscopic surgery can open up the tunnel and relieve symptoms. Most people recover completely and never have the problem again.