Carpal Tunnel Treatment in Santa Clara
Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) refers to a condition in which the median nerve in the wrist becomes either compressed or inflamed. This can lead to hand pain and numbness in the thumb and first three fingers. Our Santa Clara chiropractor, Doctor Hoewisch, offers non-invasive carpal tunnel treatment for individuals with wrist and hand pain.
Understanding Carpal Tunnel
Carpal tunnel is a repetitive motion injury of the wrist that causes injury to the median nerve. The median nerve spans from the forearm through the wrist into the hand. It is responsible for providing the feeling to the underside of the thumb and first three fingers. However, the median nerve does not provide feeling to the pinky.
In order to reach the hand, the median nerve must pass through a small tunnel in the wrist that is comprised of bones and ligaments. Repetitive movements of the hand can cause the bones in the wrist to shift slightly out of place, narrowing the passageway and putting pressure on the median nerve. Alternatively, repetitive movement of the wrist can cause the ligaments to become inflamed, compressing the median nerve. Both of these conditions can cause symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome.
Carpal tunnel syndrome can also be caused by the elbow. Repetitive motion, such as turning a screw driver, causes the pronator muscle in the forearm, near the elbow, to become overworked. This then causes the pronator muscle to become irritated and swollen. When it swells, the pronator muscle will push against anything that is near it, including the median nerve. Thus, if the median nerve is irritated near the elbow, symptoms will often occur in the hand. This cause of Carpal Tuneel Syndrom is often overlooked, is often unrecognized, but is easy to diagnose and threat
Carpal Tunnel Symptoms
Carpal tunnel primarily causes hand and finger pain and numbness. These symptoms usually get worse at night, in the morning and when performing tasks that require fine motor skills. Our carpal tunnel doctor recommends getting treatment as soon as you notice symptoms. Untreated carpal tunnel syndrome can lead to a wasting of the muscle at the base of the thumb, which can result in weak hand muscles.
Burning and/or itching
Fingers that fall asleep
Tingling and Numbness in the palm and fingers
Risk Factors for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Carpal tunnel syndrome is a repetitive motion injury. However, some professions and hobbies increase the risk of developing the condition. If you work as a typist, computer operator, programmer, electrician, plumber, baker, retail stocker or cashier, hair stylist or on an assembly line, you are at an increased risk for developing carpal tunnel syndrome.
Carpal Tunnel Treatment with our Santa Clara Chiropractor
When most people think of carpal tunnel treatment, they think of surgery. Our Santa Clara chiropractor, Doctor Hoewisch, at Hoewisch Family Chiropractic can evaluate your wrists and hands with a physical examination and recommend non-invasive treatments to help reduce your symptoms and improve the function of your median nerve.
Ergonomics and Lifestyle Changes
The first step to alleviating your hand and wrist pain usually involves making lifestyle changes and improving your ergonomics. If you work as a computer, you will want to make sure that your hands and wrists form a straight line to your elbows in order to reduce the stress on your wrist and the ligaments and bones in your wrist. You will also want to take more frequent breakes in order to rest your wrists. Our carpal tunnel doctor can give your more lifestyle tips during your appointment.
Misalignments and inflammation in the wrist can lead to symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome. Having your wrist joints aligned with chiropractic adjustments can ensure the bones are not compressing the median nerve and help reduce inflammation in the ligaments in the wrist.
Wearing braces at night and while you perform your job can help alleviate symptoms by holding your wrists in the correct positions.
If your wrist and hand muscles are weak, tight or inflamed, corrective exercises and stretches can help strengthen those muscles, and performing specific stretches may help control your pain when you experience a sudden increase in your symptoms.
Combination Treatments with our Santa Clara Chiropractor
Our Santa Clara chiropractor, Doctor Hoewisch, often recommends combination treatment programs in order to help reduce your symptoms and help you head faster. For example, out chiropractor may perform chiropractic adjustments on your wrists then recommend that you wear braces to help alleviate pain and give your wrists a break so that the inflammation can subside. To help with acute symptoms and flare-ups, our chiropractor may recommend performing certain hand and wrist stretches. As you continue to heal, our chiropractor may recommend strengthening exercises to help rebuild the muscles in your hands and wrists.
To schedule an appointment for your wrist pain or hand numbness, call our carpal tunnel doctor at (408) 985-8118.