When people develop carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) in their hands, it can disrupt both their work and personal lives. This injury occurs when too much pressure is placed on the median nerve for long periods of time, causing nerve compression. The median nerve exists along the hand and wrist, so people who develop CTS symptoms may experience numbness, tingling, and general discomfort.
If you or a loved one developed this hand injury and are now looking for chiropractic care to restore flexibility and mobility in your hands, our team at Specific Care Chiropractic wants to see you. We offer North Lauderdale carpal tunnel syndrome treatment as well as other forms of chiropractic adjustment care and physiotherapy.
What Is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?
Carpal tunnel syndrome is an injury that occurs on the palm side of the hand, where the median nerve is affected. Contrary to popular belief, computer use is rarely a direct cause of carpal tunnel syndrome, though repetitive hand behaviors can trigger the injury (e.g., twisting, squeezing, tensing).
Most people who develop CTS have either a genetic predisposition to developing the injury or another comorbidity that can lead to it. When you come to Specific Care Chiropractic, you can discuss your current symptoms, lifestyle/work habits, and medical history with one of our physicians, who will then build a treatment plan for you based on your needs.
Symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome include:
- Muscle weakness
- Nerve pain
According to Mayo Clinic, many people who develop carpal tunnel syndrome notice that any numbness, tingling, or weakness may occur in each finger except the pinky or little finger. Additionally, if your hands are prone to “falling asleep,” that is another symptom to look out for, as it may occur more frequently as your condition worsens.
Causes of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Causes of carpal tunnel syndrome can range from genetics you are born with to medications you might consume to treat another health condition. Some of the main causes of CTS include:
- Anatomy: Individuals who were born with smaller hands and wrists likely have smaller carpal tunnels, which can be prone to nerve compression and later CTS.
- Chronic illnesses: Chronic illnesses that lead to nerve damage or inflammation can trigger carpal tunnel syndrome as a side effect. These illnesses include diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, kidney failure, and lymphedema.
- Obesity: Obesity can lead to nerve damage or compression in the hands, which can trigger CTS.
- Medication: Medications for breast cancer, such as Arimidex (anastrozole), have been linked with carpal tunnel syndrome as a side effect.
- Hormonal changes: Women going through hormonal changes, such as during pregnancy or menopause, may be more prone to fluid retention, which can irritate and put pressure on the median nerve. Thyroid dysfunctions can also lead to nerve damage or compression as well.
- Repetitive hand activity: Individuals who work in labor-intensive jobs that require repetitive hand motions may be more likely to develop CTS during their careers. Common fields include construction, landscaping, plumbing, electric work, and carpentry.
When you visit Specific Care Chiropractic, we may request X-rays or other imaging exams and bloodwork to identify the cause of your carpal tunnel syndrome. From there, we can build a treatment plan that considers any comorbidities or lifestyle factors you have but helps you toward recovery.
How Can Chiropractic Treatment Be Effective for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?
Various health journals have published studies that found chiropractic treatment as an effective method for restoring functionality in patients’ hands.
The Journal of Chiropractic Medicine found that patients were able to manage their hand pain effectively and restore mobility in their hands and wrists after practicing different active release techniques. Patients received treatment on their median nerves three times a week for two weeks.
The Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics found that patients were able to improve motor functions, sensory functions, and grip strength in their hands through chiropractic treatment. Patients received treatment three times a week for four weeks.
The Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics found that patients were able to manage their hand pain through chiropractic treatment. Patients received treatment for nine weeks, where they practiced different exercises on different parts of the body (e.g., upper extremities and spine).
Techniques We Use to Treat Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
At Specific Care Chiropractic, we often use the following chiropractic adjustment techniques to treat carpal tunnel syndrome:
Manual Extremity Manipulation
This method involves manipulating the extremities, which are the parts of your musculoskeletal system that stem from your spine, such as the shoulders, hips, elbows, and knees. We apply strategic thrusts to relieve any hand pain and encourage blood circulation to your hands.
This technique focuses on the cervical spine, which is located in the neck. Carpal tunnel syndrome can be a side effect of neck pain, so we may focus on adjustment techniques that cater to that part of your body to relieve pain in your hands. This method involves your lying your chest down on the adjustment table.
This technique offers a modified version of chiropractic care in that it is gentler. It can be a good alternative if your hands are too sensitive for standard manipulation techniques and need a softer approach.
Should our chiropractors notice that you have pain in other parts of your spinal cord, they may utilize other techniques to relieve pain and inflammation (e.g., diversified, sacral-occipital technique, or side posture technique). Our team may also incorporate physiotherapy into your treatment plan.
Schedule Your North Lauderdale Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Treatment!
If you’ve developed carpal tunnel syndrome and it is now affecting your work and/or personal life, come to Specific Care Chiropractic. During your visit, you can discuss your injury with one of our physicians, who will then prescribe treatment to help you restore mobility and flexibility in your hand(s) and any other affected area in your body.