A person wearing a wrist splint is usually an indication that he or she has carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS). A lot of people blame the rise of CTS to uncomfortable body positioning for long hours or poor computer ergonomics.
Symptoms of CTS include pain from the wrist area throughout the palm side of the forearm; tingling and/or numbness of fingers; and hand weakness.
The carpal tunnel is a tube bound by bones and ligaments in the wrist area and is situated on the palm side of the hand. It is about the diameter of the thumb, and it channels and houses the tendons, veins, and median nerve for finger and hand mobility.
CTS amounts to tendon damage or a pinched blood vessel or median nerve regardless if it was brought about by injury, internal neurological damage or inflammation, physical forces, or injury that compresses the carpal tunnel.
CTS symptoms may develop from various types of work in that involves the poor positioning of the hands and arms. But, if those symptoms vanish easily and quickly, the condition probably is not CTS or if it is, is not a serious case of it.
If you suffer from CTS this tip should keep you from needing medical intervention: take a break and shake your hands and arms, then re-position your arms, hand, and general posture better.
But, if the symptoms don’t go away last after long hours of typing or after your work has long ended, you need to see a doctor.
Conventional Treatments for CTS
Western medicine provides adjustable splints that can be removed any time. A lot of people with CTS wear them during work. It’s also recommended that the CTS sufferer wears one while going to sleep.
Other suggested treatments include medications, specifically NSAIDS (Non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs). Other drugs are prescribed while others can be bought OTC (over the counter). All of these drugs merely relieve pain and come with adverse side effects. Cortisone injections are sometimes used to lessen the pressure from swelling on the median nerve.
Surgery is selected all these modalities fail to work. The least invasive CTS surgery is endoscopic surgery, a procedure in which a narrow tube is inserted into small incisions,. Open surgery, is the most invasive and it entails the use of more anesthesia.
A Non-Pharmaceutical, Non-Surgical Form of CTS Intervention is Acupuncture
Acupuncture works on the notion that Qi or vital energy flows all over the body through energy vessels known as meridians. This type of medicine has been used for centuries for both reversing bad health and optimizing good health, chronic or acute.
Lately, acupuncture has been used successfully for healing sports injuries. One dramatic example happened just prior to the 1986 Super Bowl when Jim McMahon Chicago Bears controversial quarterback had to go through acupuncture treatments for a severely bruised back that conventional treatment wasn’t able to treat.
Jim said he felt 200 percent better after the treatments. The Bears went on to win the Super Bowl by routing the Patriots. This news caught the medical skeptics and naysayers by surprise and spiked acupuncture’s slowly growing public acceptance in America.
A recent Iranian study published in January 2012’s in the Journal of Research in Medical Sciences dealt with CTS treatment using acupuncture in Maitland. In that study, 64 people suffering from moderate carpal tunnel syndrome were grouped in to two. One group wore wrist splints at night and was given a couple of acupuncture treatments each week for four weeks. The other group, the control group was given fake acupuncture along vitamins B1 and B6.
The real acupuncture group ended up with better neurological test results and had a GSS (global symptom scores) than the control group. This means that the acupuncture group experienced less numbness, tingling, weakness, and pain than the people in the control group.
The results of this study indicate that acupuncture can better the overall subjective symptoms of CTS and could be used in comprehensive care programs of those patients.