5 Ways to Alleviate the Pain from Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
There are plenty of women who suffer from so-called carpal tunnel syndrome. Many times the only real cure is surgery, but before it comes to that it’s worth following these simple tips to have less pain and a better quality of life.
Symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome
The symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome usually emerge between 30 and 60 years of age. Women suffer from this issue more commonly than men because our carpal tunnel is narrower than most men’s. This causes the area between the bones of the wrist and the carpal annular ligament – the place where the flexor tendons of the fingers and the median nerve meet – to suffer more strain. The compressed tendons become inflamed, and sometimes fluid is present. All this makes the entire area tighten, and as you know, it’s very painful. Although it usually starts on one side of the body, with time it will progress to both wrists causing difficulties when handling certain objects or performing daily tasks.
Now for the symptoms:
- It usually starts with pain in the night, and you might experience discomfort, tingling, or numbness in the hand. You may also have cramping at night, keeping you awake.
- The cramps start to radiate up all the way to the elbow, and shooting pains might begin to appear even in the thumb.
- You’ll begin to have difficulty gripping small objects, and may experience a loss of feeling in the fingers. Pinching objects using the thumb and forefinger is especially painful.
We should also mention that these symptoms are more common in pregnant women because they retain more fluid throughout the body. It’s worth remembering.
Remedies for carpal tunnel syndrome
1. Anti-inflammatory ginger compress
Some medicinal plants have powerful anti-inflammatory properties, and one of the best is ginger. To make this paste you’ll need a tablespoon of grated ginger root, some eucalyptus, and mint. You can use essential oils from the store or make your own – either will work. Mix the ingredients with a cup of warm water, and then chill it in the fridge until it is cold (cold is best for reducing pain). Soak a compress in the mixture and apply it to the uncomfortable area for half an hour. You’ll experience immediate relief.
2. Anti-inflammatory cypress and rosemary compress
For this one, we’ll make a tea using two sprigs of rosemary in a cup of water. While it cools, massage the area with a little cypress oil. You probably already know that cypress is one of the best anti-inflammatory agents available. Follow the massage with a cold compress of the rosemary tea.
3. Fenugreek compress
Have you already heard how great fenugreek can be? It’s an excellent ingredient for any anti-inflammatory compress to reduce pain. It contains high amounts of niacin and vitamin B3, which help to fight infections and relieve pain. Vitamins and flavonoids are ideal for treating osteoarthritis and other arthritis problems, so don’t forget this – they might come in handy. All you need to do is mix the flour with water to make a paste that you can apply by hand over the carpal tunnel region. You’ll be amazed by the relief you get.
4. Dietary recommendations
Carpal tunnel syndrome can also be treated from the inside by choosing the right foods whose nutrients will relieve inflammation and strengthen the nerves, cartilage, and bone. So what do you need to do? It’s simple – start off your mornings with a tablespoon of flaxseed oil, which fights inflammation with its high levels of vitamin B6.
Rice, green leafy vegetables, chicken breast, and bananas are also excellent, along with grapefruit, pineapple and orange juices. They provide antioxidants, essential minerals, and vitamin B. Remember to incorporate these into your diet every day. Another perfect juice for your lunch is made by blending two leaves of kale with a green apple. If you drink that three times a week you’ll experience relief.
5. Ergonomic recommendations
You have to remember to take these into account. Your laptop can really irritate the carpal tunnel region, and it’s about time you learned about it. Try to avoid spending long hours typing on a laptop or talking on the phone, and if you must use a computer try to choose an ergonomic keyboard that doesn’t make you bend or stretch your wrists as much.
There are also some gentle hand exercises that will relieve the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome. Just do some slow wrist circles for a minute, or grab your left thumb with the right and stretch them. This is so you don’t lose flexibility in the tendons, which puts less pressure on the nerves. Always choose gentle and low intensity hand exercises. Carpal tunnel syndrome is a condition that can’t be reversed and almost always requires surgery at some point, but until the time comes it’s worth following these tips to get some relief.