One of the most interesting and highly lauded treatments for carpal tunnel syndrome is art of acupuncture. At the most basic level, acupuncture involves the insertion or “spinning” of very thin needles into specific places in the body. This is believed to create a better flow of energy through the body along lines known as meridians. Once the needles are removed, people find that they have better energy and even find that certain medical conditions are much improved. One interpretation for why acupuncture works the way that it it does is that it encourages the release of natural pain-killers into the body while encouraging healthy blood flow. If you have carpal tunnel syndrome, the needles are inserted into points on your arm, wrist, thumb and hand, though you might also have needles spun into your neck, upper back and legs.
The number of acupuncture sessions that you need will vary based on how severe your pain is, how rough you are on your hands and how healthy you are in general; this is something to speak to your practitioner about.
There is an alternative to these needles (which don’t hurt when they are inserted; they simply give a split-second “tingling shock” sensation”) called laser acupuncture. Here, a handheld laser replaces the needles.
One study into the effectiveness of acupuncture on CTS included 36 people who had a median pain duration of 24 months. Fourteen of these people had had one or two surgical release procedures but got no results. Three laser acupuncture sessions were given to them every week for four or five weeks. At the end of this study period, 33 people had had their CTS pain removed or at least cut in half or diminished even more, including all of those who had been failed by surgery. Follow up research over the next one to two years discovered that CTS pain came back in only two out of 23 contacted people, and both of them were successfully re-treated.
In 1997, the National Institutes of Health declared that acupuncture was a useful and viable supplemental treatment to the standard procedures of treating CTS and was a good candidate for inclusion into a regimen of CTS treatment. However, there is not enough evidence to tell us that it can cure CTS. 36 people with good results, while impressive, is not a good sample size and it is important to remember that laser acupuncture wasn’t the only thing that was used there. Traditional Chinese herbal remedies were also used as were traditional acupuncture, other nutritional supplements and even the ancient heat therapy moxibustion.
But there might be a simpler and much less expensive treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome that doesn’t require any acupuncture, as good as it is. There are physical exercises that can be done which are designed to relieve CTS symptoms. These won’t necessarily require you to make any changes to your diet, and you won’t have to see a doctor to do them.
Don’t let yourself sit by helplessly as your carpal tunnel syndrome more and more painful. Did you know that simply changing several of your daily habits can help alleviate some of the pain caused by CTS? Or that there are easy to learn simple massage that can take away the numbness in your hands? Follow this link to learn carpal tunnel exercises that can help you learn healthy habits for life.