Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

by Dr. Armstrong

If your wrists ache, your fingers are numb, you have difficulty doing even the most simple tasks, you may be suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome, a hand disorder resulting from repetitious and forceful motion of one's hands and wrists.

Carpel tunnel syndrome is common, and affects those of us who use the same hand motions over and over again.  It affects painters, textile workers, word processors, cashiers, electronics assemblers, along with those in many other professions. Carpel tunnel syndrome is fortunately often preventable through proper hand exercises and hand positioning.

The carpal tunnel is the bony cavity in your wirst through which your nerves and tendons extend to the hand.  When you repeat the same hand and wrist movements day in and day out, the excess strain causes tendons to swell and press on the main nerve of the hand.  This persistent irritaion of the nerve can result in pain, numbness, and dysfunction, not only in the hands and wrists, but it may also extend to the forearm and elbow as well. If you are at risk for developing carpal tunnel syndrome, why not try to prevent the condition before it even occurs?  

By learning how to position your hands properly and by exercising your hands regularly, you can relieve excess pressure on your tendons and nerves and thereby prevent uncessary pain and disability. When you keep your wrists and elbows straight, you place less pressure on the tendons and nerves in your hands.  Try adjusting your work so that you can keep your forearm and hand straight.  Use hand tools with the appropriate width, size and shape.  Make sure that you can grip your tools comfortably, and that the tools can absorb the vibration from their use, with handles positioned to keep your wrist and hands in alignment.

This information is not intended as a substitute for professional chiropractic care.  For a free, no obligation consultation, please call our office today at 707.792.1400.

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