It may be a sign of carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) if you have been experiencing numbness, tingling, pain, and/or weakness in your arm. Carpal tunnel syndrome is one of the most common medical conditions in America. About 1 to 3 persons for every 1,000 people suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome in the United States per year, according to StatPearls.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, there is no need to worry – Naples carpal tunnel syndrome treatment can help. Your doctor will ask about your symptoms and do a physical examination to see if you have carpal tunnel syndrome. If it is determined that you do have carpal tunnel syndrome, our doctors will recommend different treatment options for your condition.
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What Causes Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?
Carpal tunnel syndrome affects the median nerve, which controls the thumb and fingers’ sensation and movement. The carpal tunnel is a small space formed by bones in your wrist and a ligament (tendon) that keeps the bones together.
Carpal tunnel syndrome occurs when pressure builds up inside the carpal tunnel, causing pain and numbness in these areas. The cause of this compression varies between people but often includes certain repetitive movements like typing.
The median nerve runs from your forearm into your hand through this tunnel. The carpal tunnel contains tendons, which are bands of tissue that connect muscles to bone. When tendons swell or are irritated by too much pressure or swelling, they can pinch the nerve, resulting in symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome.
Symptoms may include:
- Pain and numbness in the thumb side of your hand
- Inability to grasp small objects
- Narrowing the carpal tunnel – restricts blood flow to the median nerve
- Weakness in muscles such as index finger muscles
In other cases, the cause of carpal tunnel syndrome remains unknown. This condition is known as idiopathic carpal tunnel syndrome.
There are many things that can increase your risk of developing CTS, including:
Repetitive use of the hands and wrists for activities such as typing, knitting, and playing musical instruments can lead to carpal tunnel syndrome. CTS is common among musicians.
Obesity increases your risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome because it puts extra pressure on the nerves in your wrist. This can cause inflammation.
Diabetes also increases your risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome – it causes nerve damage and swelling in the body (diabetic neuropathy).
High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)
High blood pressure, or hypertension, can increase blood flow through the carpal tunnel area in your wrist and cause swelling that compresses the median nerve. If you have high blood pressure, your doctor may prescribe medications to help control it and reduce your risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome.
During pregnancy, hormonal changes cause fluid retention in tissues throughout your body, including those around your wrist. This extra fluid can put pressure on the median nerve, leading to carpal tunnel syndrome.
Smoking narrows blood vessels and increases the pressure inside them, which may contribute to CTS symptoms.
As you age, the sheath surrounding the median nerve becomes more rigid, making it harder for blood to flow through it properly.
Anyone can develop carpal tunnel syndrome, but women are three times more likely to develop the condition than men. This might be due to hormonal changes that affect fluid retention, especially during pregnancy or menopause. Swelling can reduce available space in the carpal tunnel and compress the median nerve.
Naples Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Treatment Options
There are several treatment options available for carpal tunnel syndrome in Naples. Our doctors will likely recommend a combination of therapies and lifestyle changes based on your particular case. CTS can be treated with:
A trained therapist can teach you how to stretch the muscles around your wrist and hands and show you exercises that strengthen them without putting pressure on the carpal tunnel area. These exercises help improve blood flow to the affected area.
We consider chiropractic treatment an effective way to treat CTS because it focuses on maintaining proper alignment of the joints, ligaments, and tendons throughout the wrist area. Our chiropractors use their hands to manipulate the spine and other parts of the body to relieve pressure on nerve roots and increase blood flow – which reduces inflammation and swelling in affected areas.
Pain management techniques such as massage therapy, acupuncture, or cold therapy can help reduce pain associated with CTS. These treatments can also be helpful for people with stiff joints or limited mobility due to their carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms. However, pain management is combined with other treatment options.
Rehabilitation includes exercises to stretch and strengthen muscles in the hands and wrists. These exercises are often effective in relieving CTS symptoms. In some cases, you may need to wear wrist splints at night for several weeks.
When it comes to carpal tunnel syndrome, neurologists can prescribe medications that help reduce inflammation and swelling within the nerves. They may also combine surgery options or other treatments to subdue the condition.
Preventing Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Preventing carpal tunnel syndrome is easier than treating it. You can take steps to avoid the risk factors leading to carpal tunnel syndrome. If you’re at risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome, consider taking these steps:
- Wear a wrist splint at night to keep your wrists straight when you sleep. This helps reduce the pressure on your median nerve.
- Use your computer mouse with a wrist pad or gel pad to support your wrist in a neutral position.
- A good posture keeps your weight evenly distributed throughout your body. This helps reduce fatigue and muscle strain, contributing to CTS.
- When you’re working with tools that require frequent hand movements, try keeping your hands warm.
- You should also take frequent breaks to stretch out your wrists and fingers before going back to work.
- Reduce your force and relax your grip If you’re working with heavy tools.
Get Your Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Treated Today
If you feel numbness or tingling in your fingers and experience pain and weakness in your hand, wrist, or arm, it may be time to seek treatment. Our Naples carpal tunnel syndrome treatment will help relieve your pain so that you can get back to enjoying life again.
Our doctors at Naples Community Injury Center will help restore function and prevent further damage to the affected nerves. While many different treatment options are available, your condition will assume a specific plan that fits your unique needs. Call us today at 239-631-5445 or request an appointment online to begin your journey to recovery.