Acupuncture Can Treat Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Updated: Jan 27
Approximately 4.5 million Canadians suffer from a repetitive strain injury, which is about 15% of the population. One of the most common types of these injuries is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS).
What Is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) is a condition that affects the hands, arms, and wrists and can be extremely painful in some situations. The carpal tunnel is a canal that connects your forearm to your hand. Inside the canal is a median nerve. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is when that nerve becomes compressed.
What Can Cause Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?
What causes that median nerve to compress? Express pressure on your wrist. In most instances, this pressure is a result of inflammation, which leads to swelling. Usually, inflammation is caused by another underlying medical condition that can interrupt your circulation.
Some health conditions commonly linked to CTS are diabetes, high blood pressure, rheumatoid arthritis, thyroid dysfunction, and others. Pregnancy or menopause has also been known to cause carpal tunnel syndrome.
Carpal tunnel syndrome can also be caused by overuse of the wrist in certain positions. This is common with certain jobs where people are required to use their hands the same way every day.
Whether you work in an office typing or use power tools consistently, this type of repetitive behavior can lead to inflammation and pressure on the median nerve, ultimately causing carpal tunnel syndrome.
Common Treatments For Carpal Tunnel
In most cases, people choose their treatment based on the severity of their Carpal Tunnel symptoms. In more mild cases, behavioural solutions such as changes in the way you work or move your wrist can lead to a lessening in pain and inflammation.
In more moderate instances, things like steroid medications or wrist braces can be helpful. In the most severe situations, surgery has been used. However, many Canadians have recently looked to alternative medicines to help with their carpal tunnel and the results have been incredible.
Can Acupuncture Treat Carpal Tunnel?
Yes! In fact, numerous studies have been conducted in recent years that prove acupuncture is an effective treatment method for people suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome.
Dalian University conducted a 20-day clinical trial where they administered acupuncture to patients with carpal tunnel syndrome. Their results showed that acupuncture had a significant impact on patients. Overall, they found that in 86.67% of cases treated, acupuncture repaired the damaged nerves, which lead to improved wrist function and lessened pain.
Other research studies have compared acupuncture to other forms of treatment including medication and wrist braces. The Qufu Shuyuan Clinic published findings in the Journal of Clinical Medical Literature that found acupuncture to be more effective than both anti-inflammatory drugs and carpal tunnel braces.
Does Acupuncture Hurt?
Understandably, a lot of people suffering from painful issues are wary of new treatments that might cause more pain. While acupuncture makes use of small needles at various nerve points of the body, these needles are extremely thin and non-painful. Every needle is pre-packaged and wrapped individually. They are also sterilized and never re-used on other patients.
Book An Acupuncture Consultation
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome can significantly impact your life. After all, we use our hands and wrists hundreds of times a day, whether we are brushing our teeth or eating dinner. If you want to try an alternative approach to treatment, acupuncture might be the right path for you.
Not only does acupuncture help alleviate pain and inflammation in the wrists, but it can also actually help restore dexterity in the hands. I offer consultations before appointments to make sure acupuncture treatment is right for you and your specific health concerns and ultimate goals.
Have a question about acupuncture? Find it here. Want to know the specific ways acupuncture is used to treat carpal tunnel syndrome? Contact me today. My clinic is located in West Edmonton and I offer direct billing to most major insurance providers including Blue Cross and Great West Life.