Has your screen time increased as work-from-home becomes more common? As the world of work transitions to more remote venues, you may notice that your hands and wrists are more sore than usual. If so, stay tuned – you may benefit from learning about carpal tunnel syndrome
What is carpal tunnel syndrome?
Carpal tunnel is a relatively common ailment that causes pain, tingling, and numbness in the hand and arm. When one of the primary nerves in your arm, the median nerve, becomes compressed, it causes carpal tunnel syndrome. There are many reasons for carpal tunnel syndrome, including overuse, arthritis, pregnancy, or genetics.
Carpal tunnel is a condition that usually gets more painful over time, so the sooner it’s treated, the better treatment outcomes. If left untreated, carpal tunnel can lead to more extreme pain and even permanent nerve damage.
Carpal Tunnel Symptoms
There are a few typical symptoms everyone is familiar with: pain and tingling in the wrist and up into the arm, but a few signs aren’t as apparent. You might experience any of the following:
- Weakness or clumsiness in the hand, making fine motor skills challenging. You might stumble over buttoning your shirt or tying your shoes.
- Dropping things. Carpal tunnel can induce weakness and numbness, so frequent dropping incidents can indicate carpal tunnel combined with other symptoms.
- Occasional shock-like sensations that branch to the fingers.
- The muscles around the thumb may be frail and notably smaller in extreme cases.
Signs often come and go at first and also may be exacerbated at night.
Carpal Tunnel Treatments
Remedies for early-stage carpal tunnel can be done from home. You can use a splint or a brace on your wrist, take over-the-counter Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) like ibuprofen, and switch up your everyday activities to avoid repetitious movements with your wrist.
Your doctor can also supply you with exercises to help reduce pressure on the nerve, a steroid shot to reduce inflammation, and in some cases, surgery is performed on the wrist to ease the stress on the median nerve. Our own Dr. Jing Bai Qin is a nationally recognized plastic surgeon and treats a variety of hand and wrist problems, including carpal tunnel syndrome.
Carpal tunnel doesn’t have to disrupt your whole life, and the sooner you treat it, the better! Contact us today if you suspect you might be suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome. We perform same-day carpal tunnel release surgeries that can almost immediately get you back to normal. If you’re interested in talking to a doctor about your carpal tunnel treatment options, get in contact with us today at our New York dermatologist offices!