What is carpal tunnel?
The median nerve is located within the carpal tunnel, a narrow passageway in the wrist that is closely surrounded by connective tissue and bone.
Carpal tunnel syndrome is more correctly described as compression of the median nerve within the carpal tunnel. The simplest test to evaluate it is tinnels test - tapping the wrist looking for pain or tingling .
The compression is often caused by certain repetitive movements creating inflammation and swelling within the carpal tunnel. As the inflammation builds, the surrounding bone and tissue extenuates the pressure on the nerve, restricting movement and affecting fine motor coordination.
Symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome include pain, numbness, and or tingling in the wrist and forearm and a reduced wrist function.
What Can I do to alleviate symptoms of carpal tunnel?
You should rest, ice, compress and elevate the wrist whenever possible.
Kinesiology Tape can help with the compression of the wrist, which will reduce the swelling and inflammation. The tape also helps improve circulation of the blood and lymph, thus helping speed the healing process.
How to properly apply the tape to your wrist and forearm.
Measure your first length of tape from the middle of your palm to the middle of your forearm. Then, assuming that you are applying the tape to yourself, take the affected wrist and move it into an extended position where the palm of your hand should be facing away from your body with your fingers pointing to the floor, as if pushing a drawer shut.
Taking the tape attach it to the palm of your hand, and then using your other hand smoothly and gently run the tape across the wrist and forearm. Gently rub the length of the tape to push out any creases that may have occurred and activate the adhesive.
Now measure around the wrist at the base of the hand, but leave about an inch between the two ends so that they don’t overlap.
Finally, to support the wrist further, take the second bit of tape and apply it over the wrist perpendicular to the previous taping. Stretch the tape across the front of the wrist and over the wrist bones, but do not allow the two ends to meet.
Make sure the taping has supported the wrist but not restricted normal movement.