Your median nerve, which is in charge of the palm side senses of thumb and fingers, excluding the pinkie, runs from your neck to your wrist. This nerve is placed inside the so called Carpal tunnel, which is formed out of tiny bones. (Carpal is derived from the Latin word “Carpus”, which actually means the wrist.) The Carpal tunnel syndrome is not an uncommon problem, and it starts when this central nerve gets damaged, pressed, or squeezed inside the Carpal tunnel. This problem can manifest in numerous symptoms, including pain, tingling sensation, numbness, or a “strange feeling” in the hand, wrist and fingers. Even though the Carpal tunnel syndrome was recorded at various ages, the most problematic age has been usually over 50 years. An interesting fact is that the Carpal tunnel syndrome has occurred as a problem, more with women rather than men, and if you are left handed you have bigger chances of having this syndrome.
Carpal Tunnel syndrome is a very common problem, often causes by repetitive activities like typing. Some cases of carpal tunnel syndrome may be related to arthritis, thyroid disease and pregnancy.
There are some Carpal tunnel exercises that can help prevent and ease the pain of the Carpal tunnel syndrome. Please have in mind that these exercises alone are not a full replacement for the transcribed treatment as well as ergonomic positioning, but on the other hand, they may give you some relief as well. You can do these exercises daily, several times during the day. For example, it is best that you start and end of your work shift like this, and also you can do them during any breaks you have throughout the day.
Here is how you should do the exercise:
Stand up straight, and extend both arms straight out in front of you.
Extend your wrists and fingers acutely as if you are trying to signal someone to stop. Hold this position for no less than 5 seconds.
Now straighten your wrists and relax your fingers.
Keep your wrists straight, form fists and squeeze them strong. Again, not less than 5 seconds.
Holding the fists in that position, fold your wrists down, and hold them like that 5 seconds.
Now straighten both wrists and relax your fingers like before.
You can try to repeat this series 5-10 times, and then relax your arms by your sides.
Wrist Flexor Stretch
This is also a very effective exercise, which might help you with Carpal tunnel syndrome. While keeping your elbow straight, use the other hand to pull your wrist and fingers backwards, until you feel a mild stretch pain-free feeling. If there is no increase in pain, hold your wrist like that for 15 seconds and repeat 4 times.
Wearing a splint at night can help prevent the symptoms occurring at night. Sometimes steroid injections into the carpal tunnel is acquired to reduce the inflammation in the carpal tunnel.
Chiropractic can help as well. Mobilising the carpal tunnel helps to reduce the pressure on the median nerve which releases the symptoms. Sometimes however, the nerve is compressed in the neck, and not in the hand at all. If this is the case, the the chiropractor will work on your neck to release the pressure on the nerve.