Carpal tunnel syndrome is often seen as a condition that only office workers develop, but there are many professionals in other work settings that develop it. Repetitive motions and the use of vibrating hand tools can lead to its development. If you suspect you have carpal tunnel syndrome, here is what you need to know.
What Are the Symptoms?
Some people overlook the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome in its earliest stages. However, detecting the condition early is important because you'll have more non-surgical options available to you the sooner it is detected.
One of the most noticeable symptoms of the condition is frequent burning and numbness in the fingers and the palm of your hand. You might sometimes feel as if your hands are swollen, even though there is no appearance of swelling.
As the condition progresses, you can have more difficulty with gripping objects and struggle with differentiating between hot and cold sensations with your hands.
What Can You Do?
In the earliest stages, your doctor will likely recommend the use of non-surgical methods to treat carpal tunnel syndrome. Splinting is one of the most commonly used methods. You might also have to cut back on the activities that resulted in its development.
If the non-surgical methods are not effective, carpal tunnel release surgery can be performed. This surgery focuses on releasing the pressure on the median nerve. This results in the symptoms being alleviated.
During the course of the surgery, the doctor will cut the ligament that is around the wrist. Over time, the ligament grows back, but there will be more room around the median nerve, which prevents the symptoms from developing again.
How Can You Recover Faster?
One of the concerns about carpal tunnel release surgery is that it will take a considerable amount of time to recover from. However, the reality is that you can likely return to most activities the next day. In fact, your doctor will likely recommend activities such as typing in short spurts to help with the recovery period.
Before the surgery, if you smoke, stop until after you have fully recovered. Smoking tends to slow the healing process for all procedures. You should also focus on keeping your hand elevated. Elevation helps to prevent swelling.
Consult with a doctor at a location like Town Center Orthopaedic Associates, P.C. to get a professional diagnosis of your condition and to learn more about your treatment options. You can also learn about what you can do to prevent carpal tunnel syndrome if you have not developed it yet.