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Carpal tunnel causes millions of people distress every year. And while this affliction is known to be the result of repetitive stress to the wrist, that is only one of the two causes. Less known to the general public is the second cause: repetitive stress to the neck. Most people understand that frequent stress to the wrist bones can create inflammation in the wrist (and thereby leading to the symptoms of carpal tunnel). But it has also been discovered that only treating the wrist isn’t as effective as treatment that also includes a focus on the neck. Why?
The most logical and scientific explanation is simple: the nerves located in the neck help control the muscles and blood flow to the tissues of the shoulders, arms, hands and — yes — the wrists. It’s accurate to surmise that a neurological system that isn’t functioning as it should, makes it impossible for the tissues for which it’s responsible to operate at peak efficiency.
So how can a chiropractor help patients when it comes to carpal tunnel? At Dynamic Chiros, we approach the issue seriously, using our knowledge of the biomechanics of the body to accurately diagnose and treat patients suffering from the pain and debilitation of carpal tunnel.
Repetitive stress to the wrist is simple to understand. If you spend your days in front of a computer with poor arm position, you can create issues in your wrist that can lead to carpal tunnel. But what about the neck?
It turns out that poor neck position can also lead to carpal tunnel. Going back to the example of sitting in front of a computer, if your head is out of position by just a single inch forward, you put repetitive stress on the neck. This results in the muscles on the back of your neck to pull 10 pounds more than normal throughout the day. And this can lead to inflammation around the nerves in the neck that control the arms and wrists.
That is why we look beyond the wrist. If a patient is only treated for the wrist without attention being given to the nerves that control it, it may not be enough for a full recovery.
Chiropractors use their expertise of the musculoskeletal system to help treat the inflammation in the neck that contributes to the symptoms of carpal tunnel. They will first examine your hands, arms, shoulders and neck to determine if a patient’s symptoms are the result of day-to-day activities or a different, underlying disorder.
After the initial examination, they will most likely perform a spinal manipulation to help relieve the pain. They also may choose to pursue other forms of therapy such as rest, immobilization or the application of cold packs to reduce swelling. Other options include chiropractic joint manipulation, stretching and strengthening exercises and soft-tissue mobilization techniques.
At Dynamic Chiros, we invest ourselves in your recovery by looking at more than just the wrist. We examine all possibilities that lead to the symptoms of carpal tunnel, enabling our patients to make full recoveries, and we’ll even help our patients understand how to avoid making carpal tunnel a recurring problem. If you’re suffering from carpal tunnel — or think you may be — don’t hesitate to set up a consultation as soon as possible. You can live and work without pain, and we’re here to help make that happen.
To get started on bettering you health, contact us today!