Franklin Chiropractor | Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Go to the best to get help. they are going to do an amazing job. The eight bones of your wrist form a U-shaped channel that houses several tendons and your Median nerve. This channel is called the Carpal tunnel. Your median nerve is responsible for sensation on the palm side of your first 3 ½ fingers. Compression or irritation of this nerve as it travels through the carpal tunnel causes the condition known as “Carpal tunnel syndrome”. Carpal tunnel syndrome is the most common nerve entrapment, affecting 3-5%of the general population. Females are affected two or three times more frequently than males. Carpal tunnel syndrome most often affects adults age 45-60. Carpal tunnel syndrome can be brought on by prolonged wrist flexion and/or repetitive wrist movements like supermarket scanning, keyboard use, carpentry or assembly line work. Exposure to vibration or cold may also aggravate the condition. Carpal tunnel syndrome is more common in your dominant hand but frequently affects both hands. Some risk factors for developing carpal tunnel syndrome include diabetes, thyroid disease, rheumatoid arthritis, alcoholism, kidney disease and being short or overweight. Fluid retention during pregnancy is a common cause of carpal tunnel symptoms. Symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome include numbness, tingling or discomfort on the palm side of your thumb, index, middle finger and half of your ring finger. The discomfort can sometimes extend towards your elbow. The symptoms usually begin as nighttime discomfort or waking up with numb hands but can progress to a constant annoyance. Your symptoms are likely aggravated by gripping activities like reading the paper, driving or painting. Early on, your symptoms may be relieved by “shaking your hands out”. You may sometimes feel as though your hands are tight or swollen. In more severe cases, hand weakness can develop. Compression of your median nerve in the carpal tunnel is often accompanied by compression at a second or third site as well. Researchers call this “double crush syndrome.” Common “double crush” partners for carpal tunnel syndrome involve the spine or muscles in your neck, shoulder and forearm. To help resolve your condition, you should avoid activities that involve repetitive wrist flexion, i.e. pushups. Grasping the handlebars on your bicycle will likely cause irritation of your condition. Our office may prescribe a special splint that holds your wrist in a neutral or slightly extended position that will help with your nighttime symptoms. If left untreated, carpal tunnel syndrome can result in permanent nerve damage. The American Academy of Neurology recommends conservative treatment, like the type provided in the franklin chiropractors office, before considering surgical alternatives. Our TreatmentHere is a brief description of the treatments your franklin chiropractor may use to help manage your problem. 1.Joint Manipulation -Your franklin chiropractor has found joints in your body that are not moving freely. This can cause tightness and discomfort and can accelerate unwanted degeneration i.e. arthritis. Your franklin chiropractor will apply a gentle force with their hands, or with hand held instruments, in order to restore motion to any“restricted” joints. Sometimes a specialized table will be used to assist with these safe and effective “adjustments”. Joint manipulation improves flexibility, relieves pain and helps maintain healthy joints. 2.Therapy Modalities -We may apply electrotherapy modalities that produce light electrical pulses transmitted through electrodes placed over your specific sites of concern. These comfortable modalities work to decrease your pain, limit inflammation and ease muscle spasm. Hot or cold packs are often used in conjunction, to enhance the effect of these modalities. Another available option is therapeutic ultrasound. Ultrasound pushes sound vibrations into tissues. When these vibrations reach your deep tissues, heat develops and unwanted waste products are dispersed. 3.Myofascial Release -Overworked muscles often become tight and develop knots or “trigger points”. Chronic tightness produces inflammation and swelling that ultimately leads to the formation of “adhesions” between tissues. Your franklin chiropractor will apply pressure with their hands, or with specialized tools, in order to release muscle tightness and soft -tissue adhesions. This will help to improve your circulation, relieve pain and restore flexibility. 4.Therapeutic Exercise -Muscle tightness or weakness causes discomfort and alters normal joint function, leading to additional problems. Your franklin chiropractor will target tight or weak muscles with specific therapeutic stretching and strengthening to help increase tissue flexibility, build strength, and ease pain. Healthy, strong, and flexible muscles may help prevent re-injury. 5.Infrasound – Ultrasound therapy uses a small circular applicator to deliver high-frequency sound waves into your body. You will not hear or feel infrasound waves- only the gentle massage of the applicator rubbing your skin. Ultrasound is thought to improve blood flow, speed healing, and reduce pain & swelling. Franklin Chiropractic
Some Things That You Can Do to Help Yourself 1.Workstation Ergonomics -Ergonomics is the science of adjusting your workstation to minimize strain in the following ways: •Maintain proper body position and alignment while sitting at your desk – Hips, knees and elbows at 90 degrees, shoulders relaxed, feet flat on floor or footrest. •Wrists should not be bent while at the keyboard. Forearms and wrists should not be leaning on a hard edge. •Use audio equipment that keeps you from bending your neck (i.e., Bluetooth, speakerphones, headsets). •Monitors should be visible without leaning or straining and the top line of type should be 15 degrees below eye level. •Use a lumber roll for lower back support. •Avoid sitting on anything that would create an imbalance or uneven pressure (like your wallet). •Take a 10-second break every 20 minutes: Micro activities include: standing, walking, or moving your head in a “plus sign” fashion. •Periodically, perform the “Brugger relief position” -Position your body at the chair’s edge, feet pointed outward. Weight should be on your legs and your abdomen should be relaxed. Tilt your pelvis forward, lift your sternum, arch your back, drop your arms, and roll out your palms while squeezing your shoulders together. Take a few deep cleansing breaths. 2.RICE-The acronym RICE can help you remember what to do after a new injury: •Rest – Limit stress to the injured area for at least the first 48 hours. •Ice – Apply for 10-15 minutes. Break for 30 minutes. Reapply. (Alternatives to the ice pack include Ziploc bags filled with ice, or a bag of frozen vegetables.) •Compression – Wrap the injured area with an elastic ACE bandage if possible. •Elevation – Elevate the injured area to limit swelling. 3.Nutrition-Brief – The foods we eat have a dramatic impact on how we feel and our bodies will perform best with quality foods. Here are a couple of nutrition tips for better health & healing: •Decrease consumption of red meat & refined carbohydrates like sugar and white flour. •Choose “healthy” oils like olive or canola. •Increase consumption of vegetables and fruits. •Choose water over carbonated, caffeinated or calorie-laden beverages. •Consume six 8-oz glasses of water daily. 4.Home Ice-Application of ice will help reduce inflammation by constricting swollen blood vessels. Ice may also help reduce muscle spasm and numb irritated nerves. •Apply for 10-15 minutes. Break for 30 minutes. Reapply. (Alternatives to the ice pack include Ziploc bags filled with ice, or a bag of frozen vegetables.) Repeat several times a day as needed. •Place a thin towel between your skin and the ice pack for comfort and safety. •Use ice-massage for smaller areas. Begin by freezing a small paper cup of water. When frozen, tear off the bottom inch of the cup to expose the ice. Massage the indicated area for 5-10 minutes in a slow figure-eight pattern. Do not hold the ice in one position. Franklin Chiropractic