Obtain Relief with Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Exercises

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Carpal tunnel syndrome is a disabling condition characterized by pain, numbness, tingling, paresthesia (pins and needles, swelling and in advanced cases, muscle wasting of the thenar eminence of the hand.

In most cases, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is caused by muscle imbalance between the muscles in the hand and forearm that flex and adduct the fingers and those that extend and abduct the fingers, ultimately leading to entrapment of the median nerve that supplies function and feeling to the thumb, index, middle and one-half of the ring finger. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome can be exceedingly painful and is often associated with decreased strength and coordination in the hand when left untreated. Although there are numerous treatments that exist, ranging from surgery to massage, the most effective are those that correct the underlying muscle imbalance that is the root cause of this condition.

During an initial doctor visit, patients may be prescribed non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) to reduce pain and swelling as well as a wrist brace to reduce wrist flexion which cause increased impingement of the median nerve. The patient may also be advised to refrain from movements that place undue pressure on the affected area. However, these are generally short-term treatments intended to provide relief of acute symptoms but do nothing to correct the underlying cause of the dysfunction, which is a muscle imbalance.

Long-term treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome often comes in the form of corrective exercises that promote muscle balance in the muscles that lie within and surround the carpal tunnel. These exercises are designed to lengthen the overly restrictive finger and wrist flexors and finger adductors and strengthen the underdeveloped finger and wrist extensors and finger abductors, thereby eliminating the muscle imbalance and creating equal tension on both sides of the wrist joint.

Although many occupational and physical therapists used nerve and tendon "gliding" exercises in the early stages of the illness and a variety of exercises, be aware that most of the exercises prescribed are the OPPOSITE of what the patient should use to correct the imbalance. Avoid, gripping, squeezing, flexion, finger walking, hand bicycles and anything else that involves the finger and wrist flexor muscles against resistance.

Research supports the use of exercises that involve strengthening, lengthening, and stretching of the extensor muscles and tendons in the forearm. The goal is to lengthen the flexor muscles and strengthen the extensors in order to create better balance around the nerve.

Contact us to learn more about a unique training system shown to have 90 percent success in reducing symptoms in as little as 4 weeks.


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