When the large nerve within the hand, known as the median nerve, is compressed you may develop numbness, tingling, or weakness in the hand and wrist. This is known as carpal tunnel syndrome, and it’s more common than you might realize; however, carpal tunnel does require proper treatment to prevent permanent damage. An osteopath is a doctor that focuses on providing therapeutic and hands-on care to improve not just how the hand and wrist function but also how the body functions as a whole.
How is carpal tunnel typically treated?
How carpal tunnel is usually treated will depend on the severity of your symptoms. For most, rest is important; however, this may be more challenging for people who have to type or perform certain labor-intensive tasks for work. Splinting the wrist at night can help to reduce numbness and tingling while you sleep, while cortisone injections may be beneficial for those dealing with more moderate to severe pain.
Of course, when conservative treatment hasn’t worked, many doctors recommend surgery; however, surgery should not be taken lightly. In fact, an osteopath may be able to provide you with the treatment and relief you need from carpal tunnel syndrome without ever needing to resort to surgery.
How can an osteopath help me?
Through spinal adjustments and manipulative techniques, an osteopath can realign the spine, improve blood flow to the wrists (and other areas of the body), stimulate the body’s natural healing mechanisms, and also improve the nervous and lymphatic systems. The techniques that an osteopath will employ will focus on taking pressure off of the median nerve to improve wrist functionality and range of motion, while also reducing pain and swelling. By improving circulation within the wrist, we can also stimulate better blood flow and healing to the tissue and nerves of the wrist and hands.
You must see an osteopath regularly for manipulation therapy. Yes, many people experience relief from their symptoms after a single session but most people will benefit the most from several sessions. Even once the problem has been fully addressed, coming in for maintenance sessions can also prevent a relapse.
If you are dealing with carpal tunnel syndrome, you must seek the proper medical care you need to prevent further complications, and an osteopath is just the physician for the job.