Do you often experience a tingling sensation or numbness in your wrists after clicking the mouse of your desktop for long hours? Does your wrist swell or turn red making it painful for you? If you answered positively to these questions, then you might be suffering from the carpal tunnel syndrome. The compressed median nerve of your wrist is the key cause to this health condition. Other common causes of carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) are the anatomy of your wrist, distinct patterns of hand use, spending long hours gripping strings of an instrument, clicking a desktop mouse, or using any vibrating device. Signs and symptoms of the syndrome include tingling or numbness in your wrist, burning sensation, and a weak, painful hand and arm. If you don’t take the right action in time after experiencing these symptoms, then it can turn more severe resulting in swelling, rash or inflammation on your wrist, fever, and may also cause loss of muscle mass and impaired functioning of your wrist. However, following certain easy home remedies on how to prevent carpal tunnel syndrome can help you treat the condition effectively. Scroll down to find a list of easy yet effective home remedies for CTS.
HOME REMEDIES FOR CARPAL TUNNEL SYNDROME
Ice is one of the simplest yet most effective home remedies to cure the swelling on your wrist resulting due to the carpal tunnel syndrome. All you need to do is place an ice cube on your affected wrist or hand for about ten minutes every day. If you feel extreme cold while using ice cubes directly on your hand, then wrap them in a towel.
- Alternatively, you can also use hot and cold treatment alternately. All you need to do is take two big buckets, fill one with hot water and the other with ice water. Now, put your affected hand in the bucket having hot water for half a minute and then remove it and place the hand in the other bucket containing ice water. Repeat the same and place your affected hand alternately in hot and cold water.
2. Warm Compress
Applying a warm compress on your numb wrist helps improve the blood circulation in that area and treat the numbness effectively. It relaxes the muscles and nerves of the affected part significantly. All you need to do is dip a small towel in the lukewarm water, twist it to remove the excess water, and place the towel on the affected hand for about five minutes. Repeat it thrice every day till the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome subside.
- Alternatively, you can also apply a heating pad to obtain relief from the discomfort.
- Also, having a warm shower can minimize the discomfort.
Massaging your wrist and hands is one of the effective home remedies to get rid of carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms. A good massage increases the blood supply to the affected area, alleviates the pain, and reduces tingling sensation and numbness to a great extent as well as improves the functioning of connected nerves and muscles effectively. Simply heat a little coconut oil, and massage the CTS prone body part with firm fingers for about ten minutes. Do it on a regular basis to notice improvement.
Pineapple contains bromelain, a beneficial enzyme which aids in reducing the inflammation due to carpal tunnel syndrome. Add slices of fresh pineapple to your breakfast and salads.
- Alternatively, you can drink a glass of pineapple juice to minimize the inflammation.
5. Epsom Salt
Epsom salt is an excellent remedy for the inflamed median nerve, pain, and swelling. Just mix two tablespoons of Epsom salt in a small tub filled with hot water. Soak your affected wrist and hand into the solution till the water turns tepid. Follow this a few times every week for quick, positive results.
Note: If you suffer from any kidney problem or diabetes, then avoid using Epsom salt to treat your discomfort.
Mustard oil possesses anti-inflammatory benefits that promote healing of joints. Its rubefacient properties generate heat which promotes good blood supply to your median nerve. This results in minimizing the numbness, swelling and pain. Also, it strengthens the muscles of hand and wrist and infuses sufficient energy in them. Simply heat some mustard oil and massage your palms, wrists, and fingers with it for about 20 minutes. Follow it thrice every day.
- Soaking your affected wrist in the mustard powder is one of the most effective carpal tunnel syndrome treatments. It helps minimize the compression on your affected nerve, soothe your stressed muscles, promote blood circulation, and mitigate the pain. Add some powdered mustard to a bowl filled with hot water and let it cool down. Soak your wrists and hands in the water for about 20 minutes. Follow this home remedy regularly till the pain reduces significantly.
Cinnamon is a rich source of manganese, potassium, B vitamins, and other nutrients that promote the blood circulation in your arms and treat the numbness, pain, and tingling sensation. Just mix a tsp of powdered cinnamon in a glass containing warm water and drink it twice every day.
- Alternatively, mix one teaspoon of honey and cinnamon powder and consume the paste in every morning till you find relief.
Anti-inflammatory and pain-reducing properties of turmeric are highly beneficial to treat the pain and swelling. Heat half a tsp of clarified butter; add one tsp of turmeric powder to it, and mix it properly. Pour this mixture in a glass of hot milk. Have it before retiring to the bed every night to minimize swelling.
Note: If you are pregnant, then avoid using turmeric to treat this condition.
9. Castor Oil
Castor oil possesses anti-inflammatory properties and other multiple medicinal benefits that help treat the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome effectively. All you need to do is heat a little castor oil, massage your affected hand with it for about 15 minutes, wrap a woolen cloth around your hand, and let it stand as long as possible. Do this thrice daily to reduce stiffness and pain in your wrist and fingers.
10. Flaxseed Oil
Flaxseed oil is a great cure for carpal tunnel syndrome. It aids in soothing your inflamed nerves. All you need to do is to add one teaspoon of flaxseed oil to your everyday diet.
11. Cayenne Pepper
Cayenne pepper is a spice which possesses anti-inflammatory and pain-reducing properties. Add two tsp of cayenne powder to a quarter cup of skin lotion, mix it well, and rub the remedial lotion on your affected wrist regularly till the pain reduces substantially.
- Alternatively, place about eight cayenne peppers in a cup, add rubbing alcohol in it. Let it steep for a few days, and then apply it on the affected wrist to mitigate the pain.
Note: Wash your hands thoroughly by using some milk after you use cayenne pepper powder as it can cause irritation.
12. Milk and Ginger
Ginger and milk mixture aids in reducing swelling, pain, and stiffness of your wrist, fingers, and thumb. It improves the blood circulation in your affected nerve. All you need to do is have one teaspoon of the ginger powder with a glass of milk to mitigate the discomfort linked with CTS.
13. Nutritious Diet
Consuming foods rich in B vitamins, especially vitamin B6 and vitamin B12, helps promote smooth nerve functioning and treats numbness resulting due to the carpal tunnel syndrome. Make sure you include vitamin B rich foods, such as eggs, avocados, cereals, meat, oatmeal, milk, fish, nuts, beans, cheese, dried fruits, seeds, and yogurt, in your regular diet to treat the condition.
- Deficiency of magnesium in your body can aggravate the numbness occurring due to the carpal tunnel syndrome. Having sufficient intake of magnesium promotes the smooth functioning of your nervous system and increases the blood circulation in the affected area. Add nuts, seeds, dark green leafy vegetables, peanut butter, bananas, dark chocolate, soybeans, fishes, and other magnesium-rich foods to your daily diet to reduce the discomfort.
CARPAL TUNNEL SYNDROME EXERCISES
14. Thumb Stretch
Thumb stretch is highly beneficial in curing the numbness of your thumb associated with the carpal tunnel syndrome. Place your affected hand on a flat table surface, spread your fingers, hold the thumb with the other hand and stretch it gently. Hold it on for about 15 seconds. Repeat the same for about ten times daily till your discomfort minimizes.
15. Wrist Stretch
Wrist stretches are one of the most effective carpal tunnel syndrome exercises that help in opening up and treating the compressed wrist area. Stand upright, raise your arms straight right in the front and parallel to the ground, and close your fists. Breathe in and while breathing out bend your wrists such that your fists are pointing downwards, till you feel a gentle stretch in the forearms and wrists. Hold on for 20 seconds. Bring hands back to neutral, again get your hands in the front, and while exhaling open your fists, spread your fingers, and pull or bend your fingers till you find it difficult to bear the stretch beneath your wrists. Hold the position for 20 seconds. Practice this exercise ten times daily till the discomfort mitigates.
16. Mountain Pose
Mountain pose is an effective, simple yoga for carpal tunnel syndrome that aids in mitigating discomfort substantially. Just stand upright, raise both your hand upwards with fingers pointing at the sky, arms should come near your ears, join your palms and fingers, and feel the stretch. Stand in the position for 20 seconds and then return back to normal. It helps stretch and relax the nerves of your carpal and offers you a great relief.
HERBAL REMEDIES FOR CARPAL TUNNEL SYNDROME
17.White Willow Bark
White willow bark contains an active compound called salicin that helps reduce pain and inflammation. It is anti-inflammatory in nature and an excellent pain killer. Hence, also termed as herbal aspirin. It is available in the form of tinctures, extract, capsules, powder or tea.
18. Aloe Vera
Aloe Vera is a highly effective treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome. Extract fresh gel from the leaves of aloe vera, place it in the blender, add a little water to it and blend it. Add some honey for good taste. Pour the remedial mixture into a glass and drink it. Have this medicinal aloe vera juice twice every day to get relief.
- Alternatively, apply fresh aloe vera gel on your wrist to obtain relief from the pain. Follow this home remedy regularly till the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome subside.
19. Chamomile Tea
Chamomile tea is a remedial herbal tea which contains active compounds, such as cyclic ethers, chamazulene, and bisabolol, apigenin, and anti-inflammatory properties that help cure the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome. All you need to do is place three dried chamomile flowers in a cup, pour hot water in it, let it steep for three minutes, strain the tea, add honey or fresh lemon juice for taste, and drink the herbal tea while it’s warm.
20. Wintergreen Oil
Massage your affected wrist and hand by using wintergreen oil as it helps improve the blood circulation and relaxes your muscles. It also minimizes inflammation and pain.
21. Grape Seed Extract
Grape seed extract is an excellent herbal remedy to alleviate the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome. Get fresh grape seed extract and drink it twice daily. Do consult a doctor before you start taking it.
Note: Avoid usage of grape seed extract if you’re allergic to grapes.
22. Comfrey Leaves
The use of comfrey leaves is highly recommended in the treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome. It contains active compounds, such as allantoin and rosmarinic acid, that alleviate the pain. All you need to do is add three tsp of comfrey leaves powder and about two glasses of rubbing alcohol. Let it steep for some days. Apply it on your affected hand.
- Alternatively, add fresh comfrey leaves to hot water. Let it steep for a while. Apply this lukewarm decoction to your affected wrist.
- Instead, add dried powdered comfrey to your body lotion. Use it on the affected area to get some relief.
Note: Avoid its consumption as a few compounds in comfrey may have adverse effects on your liver.
Licorice is an excellent herb packed with anti-inflammatory properties. It reduces swelling and pain. You can either use the fresh extract of licorice or its tea to treat the discomfort and pain.
Boswellia contains boswellic acid that possesses anti-inflammatory properties. They help minimize the pain by decreasing the levels of enzyme 5-lipoxygenase, which triggers the inflammation. You can have 300 mg of this herb twice daily to treat CTS.
25. Cat’s Claw
Cat’s Claw is a great herb to alleviate the pain and inflammation associated with carpal tunnel syndrome. You need to have about 15 milligrams of cat’s claw powder thrice daily to get relief.
26. Devil’s Claw
The anti-inflammatory properties of this herb help reduce pain, numbness and other symptoms of CTS. To get some relief, you can have it in the form of a tea, capsule or tincture.
Note: Pregnant women should avoid using this remedy.
27. St. John’s Wort
Consumption of this herb helps treat inflamed and damaged nerves. It reduces the tingling sensation and numbness associated with the carpal tunnel syndrome. Apply cream that contains extracts of St. John’s wort herb on the affected area.
Note: This herb takes a couple of weeks to work.
The anti-inflammatory properties of this herb reduce pain and swelling. Gently massage the affected area with arnica gel or ointment to get relief.
- Or else, you may also have its supplement after consulting a doctor.
Note: Do not consume anything (except water) 15 minutes before and after having its tablets.
Skullcap proves to be an effective herbal treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome. It reduces muscle spasms and any disorder related to CTS. Do consult a doctor for its adequate dosage.
Note: Not recommended for children.
30. Green Tea
The antioxidants present in green tea make it an effective treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome. Add half a tsp of dried green tea leaves in a cup and pour hot water. Steep it for a couple of seconds. Strain and drink thrice daily to notice the improvement.
31. Gingko Biloba
It is one of the most effectual herbal remedies for carpal tunnel syndrome. Intake of this herb not only promotes the blood circulation but also enhances the working of nerves. Thus, reduces the severity of carpal tunnel syndrome. It is available in the form of a capsule, extracts or tablets.
Feverfew not only subsides the inflammatory chemicals but also relieves a person from pain. Boil a pint of water, add an ounce of this herb and let it cool down completely. Take half a cup of this cold decoction at a time. Have it a couple of times whenever required.
Note: Do consult a doctor if you’re already taking some medication.
A compound present in this herb called aescin is anti-inflammatory in nature. It heals the inflamed nerve around the wrist and improve the blood circulation. It can be taken orally in the form of tablets, tinctures or can be applied topically.
The antispasmodic and anti-inflammatory properties of yarrow make it an effective treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome. An herbal decoction prepared from its dried or fresh leaves acts as a painkiller. Simply pour hot water in a cup and add yarrow leaves to it. Cover it with a lid for a couple of minutes. Strain and drink this herbal tea to avail its benefits.
Note: This herb should not be consumed during pregnancy.
Intake of this herb enhances the blood flow, strengthens the blood vessels and promotes circulation. The anti-inflammatory properties of butcher’s broom alleviate swelling associated with CTS. You can have 150 to 300 mg, thrice a day or its capsule followed by a glass of water.
Note: Consult your doctor before using any of the above herbal remedies to avoid allergies and other adverse effects.
- Exercise regularly to have a smooth blood circulation in the affected area.
- Have adequate rest.
- Eat nutritious food as it helps relax your muscles.
- Place your affected hand or wrist flat on a mattress while retiring to the bed.
- Use a splint.
- Have mini breaks while working on a computer by using a mouse or while doing any other work requiring repeated finger and hand movements. Take two minutes break every half an hour.
- Stretch out your arms.
- Use your entire palm while gripping an object and not just thumb, index and middle finger.
- Don’t use vibrating tools, such as grinders, jackhammers, drills, chisels, sanders, riveters, and chainsaws, for long hours as they increase the chances of wrist problems.
- Don’t sleep with your wrist tucked or bent under your head or pillow as it can compress your nerve and aggravate the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome.
- Don’t smoke as it affects your blood circulation adversely.
- Don’t put on excess of weight as it may hamper the related nerve functioning.
Did you try any home remedies when suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome? Which home cures you tried? Share your experience and ideas with us in the comment section below.