Can Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Be Prevented?
Did you know carpal tunnel syndrome is one of the most common complaints and reasons why people are absent from work? It’s becoming more of a factor these days due to the types of things we use our hands for the repetitive nature of work. So is there anything that can be done to reduce the chance of getting carpal tunnel syndrome? Let our Manhatten chiropractor help you.
Firstly, it’s important to note that no one thing will necessarily stop you from suffering from CTS at any point in your life. However, applying the following can greatly decrease the chances of you getting it.
- The risk of carpal tunnel syndrome increases if you grip something hard, move your wrist quickly and then not rest it afterwards. If you use hand tools a lot, try and decrease the grip you have on them, upgrade to superior tools which require less effort to use. For computer operators, don’t pound the keys so much, don’t squeeze your mouse so hard. Basically, treat everything more lightly.
- Take regular breaks every 15 minutes or so to allow the tissues in your hands to rest and recouperate.
- Try these exercises to improve your strength in your wrists and hands:
With your palm of one hand on a wall or your desk, point your fingers down and with your elbows straight, stretch your wrist as far back as you can. When you feel a pull on your forearm muscles, stop there and hold your position for several seconds.
Another great exercise is to make a bear claw type shape with your hands and then bring into a fist. Hold that for a few seconds and then stretch back out to your bear claw. Hold this position for 10 seconds and repeat 5 times.
- When driving or sleeping, or anything you are doing that forces your wrists to be in the same position for a long time, always try to ensure that they are straight. If you tend to sleep with bent wrists, then a wrist splint might be worthwhile.
- Change up your work habits if you can. In other words, try and switch between tasks frequently so you are not repeating the same actions on your wrists constantly. This will help in other areas of the body too.
- Always ensure your posture is checked, so try and bring your chin back, don’t slouch (just like your mother said) and never sit at a desk with your head forward.
- If you are feeling the effects of carpal tunnel syndrome, ie you’re feeling pain or numbness in your hands, don’t put it off. While the effects can take a while to manifest themselves fully, the time taken to rectify the problem gets longer the longer you leave it.
So if you are in slight pain, we would rather you come in immediately for us to help you than a few weeks into the condition. It makes our life easier to get the condition corrected, which ultimately means you will not be in pain for long. The longer you leave it, the more work both of us need to do.
As we don’t believe in “cookie cutter” treatments, we evaluate each and every patient individually and then come up with a plan of treatments with you to ease your pain. So if you suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome, we can evaluate and decide which treatment method will work best for you. Call us today 212.371.2000 or email [email protected] to schedule an appointment