If you have recently been diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome, you may find yourself wondering what if any treatment options there are that can help get your pain, discomfort, and hand function problems under control. Get to know some of the treatment options available to you so that you and your hand doctor can develop a treatment program that will get you back to your daily life with less pain, discomfort, and arm weakness from carpal tunnel.
Splints are one of the most common non-invasive treatment options available for carpal tunnel syndrome. A splint is a device that you wear to stabilize the joints in the arm, hand, and wrist. Most commonly, patients with carpal tunnel will wear their splints at night to reduce movement in the arm and reduce pressure on the pinched nerve in the wrist.
A splint is specially fitted to you by your hand doctor or orthopedic specialist so it fits your arm correctly and will give you the best possible results.
Non-Steroidal and Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs
Another way to manage the discomfort and inflammation that come along with carpal tunnel syndrome is through the use of medications. Over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen can help to reduce discomfort and numbness when the symptoms are particularly bad. This can help get you through the work or school day without having your work suffer due to the pain, numbness, or tingling.
However, sometimes, carpal tunnel symptoms are more severe and long-lasting. In these cases, it may be necessary to get a corticosteroid injection into the hand or wrist to more directly treat the problem. These corticosteroids are potent anti-inflammatory drugs that your hand doctor can administer. The effects of this treatment are usually more long-lasting and can have lingering effects, reducing your pain for several days or weeks.
If you prefer alternative medicine treatments for your carpal tunnel syndrome, then you may want to give electroacupuncture a try. This carpal tunnel treatment combines the ancient tradition of acupuncture with modern medical techniques.
The tiny acupuncture needles that are inserted into energy points throughout the body carry mild electric currents as well. These currents interact with the nervous system and can help to block pain and send signals through the nerves to the brain that may not be sent otherwise because the nerve is pinched.
Recent studies show that electroacupuncture and splinting as a combined treatment program can help to relieve the pain associated with carpal tunnel syndrome. However, it is important to keep in mind that most physicians would not recommend that you use electroacupuncture as a standalone treatment for your carpal tunnel syndrome.
Now that you know a few of the treatment options available to you for your carpal tunnel syndrome, you can be sure that you and your orthopedic specialist work together to find a course of treatment that works best for you. A doctor like those at Town Center Orthopaedic Associates may be able to help.