Why is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Common During Pregnancy?

by | Jan 11, 2023 | Blog

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is the compression of the median nerve through the carpal tunnel. Your shoulders and fingers are connected to the median nerve through the neck. The tunnel between the bones and ligaments in your wrists, known as the carpal tunnel, becomes squeezed and creates a tingling and numbing feeling.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome affects 31% to 62% of pregnant patients, compared to the overall adult population, where it affects only 4% of adults. Many pregnant patients notice symptoms after the 30 week mark.

The volume of your blood doubles douring pregnancy, and as a result, the excess fluid raises the blood vessel’s pressure, resulting in swelling. The median nerve can occasionally become compressed in the carpal tunnel region due to the high pressure, which is why Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is prevalent in pregnant women around week 30.

Who has a greater chance of developing Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?

The fact that pregnant women may move less makes them more prone to Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Although the exact origin of CTS is unknown, pregnant women who are overweight or obese are more likely to be diagnosed with CTS than pregnant women who aren’t.

Pregnancy-related Diabetes or Hypertension:

Fluid retention and subsequent swelling can result from both gestational diabetes and gestational hypertension. This can make CTS riskier.

High blood sugar levels can also cause inflammation of the carpal tunnel, which may further increase the risk of CTS.

CTS can also be easily triggered by repetitive actions. For instance, if you spend a lot of time typing, or sitting at a desk, repetitive hand motions may compress the nerve.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Management:

There are some simple guidelines you can follow to help control CTS.

Cold Treatment: Wrap some ice in a towel. For a few minutes, place the towel on the afflicted wrist. This can be repeated several times each day. The contrast bath is also an option. Get a bowl of hot water and a bowl of ice water. Place your wrist in the bowl of hot wate for one minute, then move to the ice water for one minute. Do this in intervals of 5 at a time.

Wrist Brace: To guarantee your wrist stays in a neutral position, put on a brace or splint. Wear it day or night to aid in symptom management.

Rest: When your wrist hurts or gets tired, take a short break or move on to another activity. Whenever you can, elevate your wrists. Pillows are good for assisting with elevation.

Practice yoga: According to study findings, people with CTS who also practice yoga report feeling less pain and have stronger grip strength. However more studies are required, particularly to learn more about the advantages of yoga for CTS associated to pregnancy.

Visit a Physical Therapist:

Myofacial release therapy may improve hand function and lessen pain brought on by CTS. This kind of massage is used to reduce tightness and shortness in ligaments and muscles. For more information about Myofacial release therapy, you can reach out to the experts at Sure Cure Wellness to schedule a free consultation at 469-212-8888 or schedule below.