Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a painful condition that can affect people in their middle ages. It is caused by compression of the median nerve that goes down the wrist and connects it to the forearm. The nerves become compressed because of the stress placed on them by the normal activities of daily living. Everyday tasks like typing, using the computer, sports, gardening, taking a shower or doing dishes may result to carpal tunnel symptoms. The symptoms worsen with improper wrist position and even when sitting for a long time. Sometimes, the pain may become severe and the person is not able to perform everyday functions or even simple tasks like driving. It is often mistaken as arthritis.
Elbow brace is the one solution to this problem. It is designed by the physical therapist to keep your wrist in an appropriate position that promotes mobility. This device is flexible and comfortable, and helps prevent inflammation and pain. This will relieve pressure on the median nerve. When you are wearing the brace, it goes over your forearm and below the elbow joint. It offers support to the wrist, while preventing the possible flexion or stretching of the wrist tendons. It also takes pressure off the elbow joint by wrapping around it. This prevents pressure on the elbow nerve.
If you wear the elbow brace, you are guaranteed to feel relief within days. If you wear it on your non-wrist side, you will notice an improvement within two weeks. But if you wear it on your wrist, you will experience noticeable changes after one week. The wrist will become more flexible. The pain will decrease and the range of motion of your fingers will increase.
In many cases, carpal tunnel can lead to arthritis. But not everyone with the condition develops osteoarthritis. Surgery can correct the problem for a lot of people. In some cases, there is a procedure called arthroscopic attachment of the median nerve to the carpal tunnel. This procedure involves removing a piece of tissue from the wrist. When you take carpal tunnel medication, it is important to tell your doctor if you have other conditions such as diabetes or Lupus.
In a small percentage of people who have carpal tunnel, the pain is mild to moderate and does not interfere with their daily activities. In these cases, the symptoms disappear after a few weeks. But in other cases, the condition causes so much pain, it keeps the person from doing normal tasks. It makes it difficult to perform everyday tasks like typing, using a computer keyboard or taking notes. The impairment can even make it hard to write your own name.
Most doctors treat carpal tunnel with medications such as NSAID (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) and cortisone shots. Cortisone injections are sometimes combined with physical therapy. Physical therapy helps to strengthen your arm muscles to give you more strength and flexibility. When you strengthen your arm muscles, your tendons and ligaments are less likely to be damaged. And less injury means less swelling - another positive effect of physical therapy.
If you do decide to have carpal tunnel surgery, your doctor will most likely prescribe physical therapy and probably wrist exercises, as well. He will want to make sure that you do everything he tells you to avoid a recurrence of your symptoms. If you follow his advice, you should have minimal complications. But if you don't, it's time to get back to basics - and start with your therapy.