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Pain Free Friday Sep. 23 – Do you have carpal tunnel syndrome?

Today, I’m going talk about carpal tunnel syndrome. You’ve heard of it. This is when you get pressure on the nerve in your wrist. And when you do you get tingling or numbness in your thumb and the next two or three fingers on one of both hands pain may extend to the elbow.

Usually, this pain is worse at night, and you might find yourself if it’s advanced with a weak grip or handshake and dropping things. But where does this come from? It usually comes from when you perform repetitive motions of your hand or wrists like we’ve been in the midst of a pandemic typing on the computer.

Keyboards are one of the most common causes of carpal tunnel syndrome. But other causes could include sewing, driving, assembly line work, painting, writing, and using hand tools such as tools that vibrate. Or you might play sports like racketball or handball. And sometimes musicians also suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome. We can diagnose this by hearing you tell us that you have numbness and tingling in the thumb and the next two fingers. Or we can do what we call a nerve conduction study to tell if you have slowing of your nerve across your wrist. These are things that a doctor can do.

Sometimes x-rays are done to make sure you don’t have arthritis in the wrist, but what can you do? Nonsurgically get a split keyboard, get some typing pads or wear a wrist blin at night, but make sure you are sitting right at your desk when you’re doing the typing. So why don’t you Google ergonomic aids that you can use to help you with carpal tunnel, but simply take in simple and frequent breaks when typing may stop the numbness and tingling. Try these simple things, and then if they don’t work call your doctor.