We use our hands all day every day without giving it a second thought. Our hands are important to us and allow us to do so many things. For those of us with carpal tunnel syndrome, however, ordinary things like typing and writing can be a nerve-pinching pain. This makes us less likely to do the things we love and can put a damper on even the simplest activities that happen to be hard on the wrists. Luckily for us, there are countless home remedies for carpal tunnel we can take advantage of and start feeling better right away!
The internet is full to bursting with information nowadays, and it's hard to tell what sources you can trust, which are just trying to sell you a product, and which actually care about your well-being. We are here to help you by offering the ten best home remedies for carpal tunnel syndrome that are completely free! We have added Amazon items to increase your success with any given home remedy, but it's ultimately up to you what you spend! Let's take a look at the ten best home remedies for carpal tunnel, shall we?
We found and answered a few important questions regarding what carpal tunnel syndrome is. We answered questions such as what to look for if you think you are exhibiting symptoms, what kinds of things you can do to relieve carpal tunnel, your available surgery options if you are a rare, severe case, alternative therapies akin to home remedies for carpal tunnel, and what lifestyle choices you can change to relieve symptoms.
1. What Is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?
Your carpal tunnel is on the palm side of your wrist and is comprised of bones, ligaments, and tendons with a nerve called "the median nerve" passing through. This nerve starts near the neck and shoulder and runs down to the hand, so it provides sensation to the thumb, index, middle, and the part of your ring finger that sits against your middle. Carpal tunnel syndrome is feeling a pins and needles numbness and dull aching throughout your hand and arm. This happens because the median nerve is being pinched.
Some reasons carpal tunnel syndrome occurs are:
Being female (especially at menopausal stages), having a short, wide hand size or square wrist, diabetes or thyroid issues, musculoskeletal conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, past wrist injuries or tendon issues, family history of carpal tunnel, and psychosocial factors.
2. Are There Home Remedies for Carpal Tunnel to Relieve My Symptoms?
If you are feeling uncomfortable because symptoms are flaring up, there is a number of home remedies for carpal tunnel and things you can do (or stop doing) to help the symptoms lessen. You can take breaks from repetitive tasks such as typing or playing the guitar. Ideally, you'll take a break every 15 minutes. It will benefit you to pay close attention to your grip on things. You may find you tense up too much when writing or typing and if you focus and relax your grip, you will ease up on the tension.
You should mind your flexion and avoid activities that cause you to flex your wrists too much; practice keeping them as neutral as possible! Cold hands are more likely to feel cold and stiff, so keep them warm whenever possible. Break out the hand warmers and fingerless gloves! Always remember the importance of hand and wrist stretching exercises. Do them when you're feeling flare-ups, do them when you aren't. Set a time to do them each day!
It helps to elevate your hands and wrists whenever you can; this is one of the best home remedies for carpal tunnel out there if your symptoms are caused by pregnancy, fractures, or fluid retention issues. Corticosteroids will lessen pain and inflammation, and surgery is always an option if your condition gets serious enough that you decide to visit your doctor.
3. What Are Some Surgical Treatment Options?
In the rare event our home remedies for carpal tunnel don't work out for you and improved symptoms in six months, you may need to think about considering carpal tunnel release surgery. Of this surgery, there are two types: there is open surgery where our surgeon makes an opening about 2 inches long from your wrist to your palm. There is also an endoscopic surgery in which you get two smaller openings, and your doctor guides the operation through the use of a small camera.
In both of these surgeries, the ligament around the carpal tunnel will be cut off to take pressure off the medial nerve and relieve symptoms. Post-surgery the ligament will naturally heal itself and come back together, but there will now be more room for the nerve to pass through. Nearly every surgery has a success story attached! Most times the syndrome is healed and never returns, but always remember that severe cases can and do happen and those with them will never be fully healed.
4. What Lifestyle Changes Can I Make to Avoid Carpal Tunnel?
At times, the way we do things may affect our symptoms and cause flare-ups. In the event home remedies for carpal tunnel don't work as well as you'd like them to, there are preventative things we can do to limit symptoms. We can avoid repetitive hand and wrist movements whenever possible, pay attention to your wrists and stop activities immediately if you experience numbness or pain; if you can't avoid these activities make sure you take frequent breaks. Try keeping your wrist in a neutral position without extending it too far up or flexing too far down.
When lifting things, avoid unnecessary stress on the wrists, hands, and fingers by using your larger joints. Don't hold an object the same way for too long especially if it's a heavy one and avoid vibrating power tools such as jackhammers. See if you can change up the way you sit at work so you can keep a neutral wrist position if you have a desk job. Never underestimate the power of staying relaxed and easing up on your grip during activities like writing and try not to sleep with your hands and wrists in a bent or unusual position.
5. Other Alternative Therapies for Carpal Tunnel?
There is such a vast number of things you can do to relieve your carpal tunnel, and we'd like to share with you a few more things you can do to relieve flaring symptoms. Hand therapy involves using techniques used in occupational therapy by experts that will relieve the symptoms, ultrasound therapy raises the temperature of the affected area and potentially relieves pain and speeds up recovery. You can turn to laser therapy as it may improve symptoms as some evidence points to. Another option is chiropractic treatment as it may also benefit some people and relieve symptoms.
If you are ever unsure of how to go about treating your carpal tunnel, always ask your doctor.
How We Reviewed
Our team spent much time and effort researching all the different home remedies for carpal tunnel, and we are excited to present to you our unbiased best-of list detailing the ones we found to be the best at little to no cost to you! We reviewed:
- Wrist Splints
- Work Gloves
- Acupuncture Ball
- Heating Pad
- Topical Menthol
- Hand Stretching
- Hand Massage
Where to Buy?
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Icing a hand/wrist affected by carpal tunnel will lessen pain and swelling in the area as the coolness numbs it. This inexpensive remedy has been used for decades, and doctors highly recommend it.
About $20 for a hot-cold gel standard reusable pack
- COLD THERAPY: Freezer-safe ice pack reduces blood flow & is great for treating pain & inflammation
- HEAT THERAPY: Use the TheraBeads heating pad to help improve blood circulation & muscle flexibility
- EASY-TO-USE: The dual action TheraBeads gel pad freezes in a matter of hours or warms up in seconds
Wrist splints are unique treatment options as they are made to keep your wrist in a neutral position to lessen the worsening of symptoms.
About $26 for one both-handed night wrist sleep support brace
- MAXIMUM SUPPORT FOR YOUR WRIST:This ergonomic hand splint will give your injured wrist the support it needs during...
- ADJUSTABLE FOR THE PERFECT FIT: Forget about your usual wrist braces that are too loose or too tight!The ComfyBrace...
- IDEAL FOR BOTH HANDS: The ComfyBrace wrist support strap was designed to fit right and left hand and accommodate your...
Similar to splints but less expensive and more general, work gloves offer substantial wrist training and often have a non-slip breathable water-based rubber coating.
About $13 for 3 pairs of XL DEX FIT lightweight Nitrile work gloves
- BEST COMFORTABLE ERGONOMIC FLEX SNUG FIT into all fingers, second skin feel. Precision made LIGHTWEIGHT 15-gauge Nylon...
- NON SLIP EVEN IN LIGHT OIL & UNDERWATER - Prevent the slippage on pipe or hard materials, minimizing hand fatigue....
- FIRM FLEX & COOL water based rubber coating for all day comfort. Convenient SMARTPHONE TOUCHSCREEN. NO bad smell....
Everyone has common household pain relievers such as Ibuprofen, Acetaminophen, Tylenol, Advil, etc., and this is a perfect inexpensive home remedy for carpal tunnel!
About $12 for 100 200mg Advil Liqui-Gel capsules
- FAST LIQUID PAIN RELIEF: Advil Liqui-Gels help you feel better fast. The medicine in Advil Liqui-Gels (Ibuprofen) is...
- EASY ON-THE-GO PACKET: Perfect for travel, wedding gift bags, handbags, wallets, medical and college survival kits, and...
- FAST ABSORPTION, FAST RELIEF: Advil pain relief packets deliver effective treatment of tough aches and pains including...
This unique ball increases blood circulation and restoration of brain functions. It is also a great product to have for those who are naturally fidgety!
About $39 for a 4.0 Ag 656 needle hand/foot massage ball
- IMPROVES COGNITIVE PERFORMANCE with increased blood circulation and restoration of brain functions
- RELIEVES PAIN AND PRODUCES SEDATIVE EFFECT through hand and foot massage
- INCREASES ENERGY Alleviates fatigue, energizes and enhances your vitality & mood
Applying heat to the affected area will lessen pain and cause the muscles to relax, creating more room for your median nerve to pass through.
About $35 for a king size heating pad with 6 temp. settings
- FULL BODY RELIEF: Extra-large 12” x 24” heating pad is perfect for treating sore muscles in your back, shoulders,...
- SUPER-SOFT MICROPLUSH: Thick microplush fibers offer maximum comfort for daily use.
- FAST-HEATING: Heats in seconds to provide fast, temporary pain relief to aching muscles.
Similar to heating and cooling remedies, Mentholatum ointment creates soothing relief. This method of healing also boasts aromatic vapors to make you feel better from the inside out!
About $8 for 3 ounces Mentholatum ointment jar
This is a surefire way to allow your median nerve more room to pass through and avoid pinching, and there are so many affordable, innovative products out there to help you!
About $7 for 3 finger and exerciser stretchers
- RELIEVE ANXIETY & STRENGTHEN GRIP:Ritfit hand stretchers are set of 3 resistance levels and 6 colors to choose.Helps you...
- IMPROVED TYPE:The stretchers are more thickness and the finger holes were designed for real finger,no more rip and cut...
- MAKE YOUR EXERCISE EASILY AND ANYWHERE:Those stretchers are portable with ritfit carry bag,which can exercise your...
Yoga has so many full-body benefits and stretching/strengthening exercises involving the wrists may reduce pain and improve your grip!
FREE with your Prime membership! Over one hour of yoga poses for strength, flexibility, and relaxation
Who doesn't love a relaxing massage? Professionals will pinpoint your palm's acupoints and knead them in such a way that relaxes and opens up the carpal tunnel. Regular massages could mean the end of your symptoms!
About $100 for an iPalm520s electric acupressure hand palm massager
- Precision engineered using sophisticated microchip programming, intelligent air pressure generates a soothing rhythm to...
- Deep-infrared energy provides comforting heat to the hand 98F or 107F (35/42C). This gentle heat helps to promote the...
- Provides custom control of each function for three choices of air pressure,hundreds of specially designed dimples...
Suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome isn't fun and can make even the most simple activities like writing and typing painful. We hope we have given you ten excellent ideas of home remedies for carpal tunnel; pick out your favorite remedy from our list and get started on relieving your symptoms! Check out those Amazon links to the products we provided that will increase your chances of success and relief and purchase a few to try out for yourself! What are you waiting for? You've had enough discomfort and numbness; it's time to fix it once and for all!