Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) is a painful disorder of the hand and wrist. The carpel tunnel is a space in the wrist which provides a passageway for the tendons and the median nerve. When swelling and inflammation in the wrist occur, this puts pressure on the median nerve causing carpal tunnel syndrome. Synovial fluid may also build up, adding even more pressure to the nerve. Prolonged inflammation and swelling can eventually cause the tendons to thicken and be reduced in movement. About 15 percent of Canadians develop it, but women are three times more likely than men to have carpal tunnel syndrome.
Symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome include:
- Difficulty in grasping things
- Fingers may burn, tingle, or ache
- Loss of movement in the hand or wrist
- Pain that interrupts sleep
- Pain that radiates up the arm and into the shoulder
- Weakness in the hand
The risk of developing CTS is higher in those whose work entails repetitive hand/wrist movements, poor posture, strenuous motions, use of vibrating tools, or excessive gripping. For those who already have carpal tunnel syndrome, these types of work practices make the condition worse.
Other risk factors include:
- Being overweight
- Family history/genetics
- Poor diet
- Sedentary lifestyle/lack of exercise
- Vitamin B6 deficiency
Prescription for Health
|Vitamin B6 in the form of P-5-P with a fully reactive B-complex||50 mg three times daily P-5-P with a B-complex containing 50 mg B2||Studies have shown B6 to be an effective treatment for carpal tunnel. Allow three months for results.|
|Natural Eggshell Membrane (NEM)||One capsule daily with food||Relieves pain and stiffness in 7 days|
|Celadrin caps and cream||Orally: 1500 mg tablet/capsule form or 1050 mg soft gel, per day.
Topical cream: apply twice each day
|Reduces swelling and pain; improves joint mobility; inhibits inflammation and destruction|
|Borage oil||2000 mg daily||Reduces inflammation, lubricates joints, repairs cell membranes|
|Moducare sterols and sterolins||Two capsules three times daily for one week, then one capsule three times daily thereafter||Decreases inflammation of the nerve|
|Wobenzym proteolytic enzymes||Two capsules daily on an empty stomach||Reduces inflammation and eases pain|
Health Tips to Enhance Healing
- Avoid salty foods to reduce water retention.
- Consult a physical therapist.
- Drink plenty of pure, filtered water daily. For every alcoholic or caffeinated beverage consumed, drink another glass of water.
- If possible, learn to use the opposite hand for some tasks to rest the overused one.
- Practice yoga; it has been shown to be effective in reducing the pain and inflammation of carpal tunnel syndrome.
- Stop any repetitive activity that causes pain.
- Take frequent breaks when performing repetitive tasks. Shake out hands and fingers and move them in an opposite way from what the work requires.
- The best way to combat carpal tunnel syndrome is to prevent it from happening in the first place. Learn ergonomic safety in the workplace and apply those measures on a daily basis.
- Wear a wrist splint, especially at night.
- When using a computer, ensure that the keyboard, mouse and other peripherals are at the correct height to not overextend muscles and ligaments.