Ergonomic office furniture or tools can be an effective way to prevent or relieve the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome.
Carpal tunnel is a condition that can be caused by repetitive motions of the wrist and hand. It is a common problem for office workers who use computers extensively. There are many ergonomic office tools available that can help reduce the risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome. Some of these tools include ergonomic keyboards, mouse pads and wrist rests.
If you are experiencing symptoms of carpal tunnel, such as numbness or tingling in the hands or wrists, it is important to consult with a doctor to decide the best course of treatment.
How Effective Are Ergonomic Tools at Preventing Carpal Tunnel?
Ergonomics plays a key role in preventing carpal tunnel syndrome and other musculoskeletal conditions. Recent studies show that proper use of ergonomic tools, such as keyboards, mouse/trackpad/touchpad, joystick and foot pedal controls can help minimize the onset of carpal tunnel syndrome in those engaging in repetitive hand motions over extended periods.
There are several steps you can take that don’t involve buying new office equipment to make your workstation more ergonomic. The way you sit in your chair and even how you position your keyboard can be adjusted to help prevent carpal tunnel.
You might also consider taking breaks to stretch and adjust your body position to help prevent carpal tunnel. Taking brief breaks to switch to a different task that moves your body differently can also be beneficial.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Symptoms
The carpal tunnel is a narrow passageway in the wrist made up of bones and ligaments. Carpal tunnel syndrome develops when the median nerve that runs from your forearm to the palm of your hand becomes compressed. It is a serious condition that should be diagnosed and treated as soon as possible. Common symptoms of carpal tunnel may include numbness and tingling of the hand and wrist, which can grow increasingly painful if not treated.
Sufferers may also experience muscle weakness, decreased grip strength or difficulty performing manual tasks such as typing or cutting with scissors. If you experience any of these symptoms, visiting an orthopedic or podiatry office for treatment and diagnosis is strongly recommended.
Carpal Tunnel Diagnosis and Treatment
Diagnosis for carpal tunnel syndrome might include a review of medical history as well as a physical examination. Your physical examination might include tapping or pressing on the nerve. During the physical examination you may be asked to bend your wrist or perform a few simple tasks like gripping an object.
Your doctor might also order an X-ray of your wrist or an ultrasound to see if the nerve is being squeezed or pressed on by your wrist. They might also perform a form of electromyography.
Electromyography is slightly more invasive than other previously listed forms of diagnostics. During this process, a needle-thin electrode will be inserted into the affected areas to test for damage to your nerves and other muscles. This test is often necessary to rule out other potential conditions that may cause similar symptoms.
Carpal tunnel syndrome can be treated through a few simple adjustments if caught in its initial stages but will require professional and potentially invasive correction if left untreated.
If your symptoms for carpal tunnel syndrome are infrequent or minimal, changing your positioning, resting your hands and using ice packs to reduce swelling can help. Avoid any actions that worsen your symptoms.
If you are experiencing numbness or discomfort in your hand, you might need medical treatment. Depending on the severity of your carpal tunnel syndrome, you may not need surgical treatment. Non-surgical treatments for carpal tunnel syndrome include:
- Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs
Surgical treatments for carpal tunnel syndrome include:
- Endoscopic surgery
- Open Surgery
Carpal Tunnel Treatment in Roseburg, Oregon
Centennial Orthopedics & Podiatry offer specialized carpal tunnel treatment to help alleviate the pain and numbness associated with this condition. Our doctors of podiatric medicine have years of experience diagnosing and treating carpal tunnel syndrome, offering a comprehensive range of therapies to reduce discomfort and promote healing. Depending on the individual’s particular circumstances, treatments may include physical therapy, splinting, medication, stretching exercises or even surgery in more severe cases.
Contact our office today to discuss how we can develop a carpal tunnel treatment plan designed for your needs.