We need our hands to perform an incredible amount of tasks every day, which is why we must address and treat any condition that impedes one’s ability to use their hands as soon as symptoms can be recognized. One of the more common conditions that affect one’s ability to utilize their hands is carpal tunnel syndrome. In this blog post, we will be covering the risk factors and causes of carpal tunnel syndrome, as well as how it can be treated with acupuncture.
Carpal tunnel syndrome causes tingling, numbness, and weakness in one’s hands, and there are numerous risk factors that can increase the likelihood of you developing it.
Some risk factors include:
- Workplace factors/tasks (repetitive movements)
- Nerve-damaging conditions
- Gender (women are more likely to develop carpal tunnel syndrome)
Whenever excess pressure is applied to your median nerve, which runs along your forearms and down to your fingertips, you can experience symptoms related to carpal tunnel such as tingling and weak hands. Since there are many factors that can increase the odds of this occurring, it is typically the result of more than one risk factor.
From the perspective of Eastern medicine, Qi blockages can cause a loss of mobility and pain. Therefore, when one is diagnosed with carpal tunnel, we must uncover what is causing their Qi stagnation. Afterward, acupuncture can be used on pressure points to unblock their qi, bring their body back to homeostasis, and reduce carpal tunnel symptoms. Furthermore, acupuncture can also relieve pain long-term. This is because acupuncture can be used to rewire how your brain receives signals from your nervous system, including the median nerve which is responsible for the pain and numbness associated with carpal tunnel syndrome. By altering how your nervous system reacts to pressure, acupuncture can reduce the pain and numbness that occurs when the median nerve is irritated. In addition, acupuncture can also be used to reduce inflammation, which is one of the risk factors associated with carpal tunnel syndrome. Acupuncture does this by triggering your body to release anti-inflammatory compounds such as cortisol, which in turn will reduce the chances of irritating your median nerve.
Since so much of our day-to-day tasks are reliant on the use of our hands, carpal tunnel syndrome is a very serious condition that we believe must be treated as soon as possible. If you think you’re at risk of developing carpal tunnel, whether it’s due to your job or other risk factors, or if you already have carpal tunnel, book an appointment with us to learn how Eastern medicine can help.