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Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: How to Treat Hand Numbness during Pregnancy?


Pregnancy is a life-changing journey in a woman's life. Those nine months of getting to know your baby and rejoicing the excitement of a soon-to-be mother bring out both the best and worst for your body. The chances of you suffering from a variety of discomforting issues are far more due to the significant changes taking place in your body. 

From swollen feet to fatigue, and conditions like Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, which signify numbing of hands at night, you might have to face a lot of discomforting changes in your body. But you should not let these lower your excitement of welcoming your baby. Although Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, also known as CTS, is a commonly occurring condition during pregnancy, there are a variety of measures you can take to avoid the pain of numb hands. Read ahead to find out more about it. 


What is CTS? 

The Carpal Tunnel is a tunnel-like formation between the ligaments and bones in your wrist. The condition of CTS occurs when a nerve, called the median nerve, running from your neck all the way to your wrist via your arm, gets compressed due to that tunnel. 

What causes Carpal Tunnel? 

Since the bodily movement reduces drastically during pregnancy, it also affects the blood circulation. That, in turn, worsens the compression of the median nerve by the tunnel-like formation between your wrist bones and ligaments. The condition triggers pain and numbness in the hands and fingers. 

What are the symptoms of CTS?

Some of the most noticeable symptoms of CTS include:

  • Tingling and needle-like poking feeling in fingers and wrists which goes downhill at night   

  • A severe throbbing sensation in your hands due to the numbness

  • Swelling of fingers due to restricted blood flow

  • Difficulty in performing simple tasks such as gripping objects or clasping your necklace or even buttoning a shirt


How can I treat CTS during pregnancy? 

It is essential to try and mitigate the symptoms of CTS during pregnancy to reduce its after-effects post-pregnancy. That is because depending on the severity of your symptoms of CTS, it can remain effective later on too. 


Listed below are some of the treatments that will keep you safe from CTS during pregnancy:

  1. Decrease bending of wrists - The more you bend your wrist without a break, the more it is going to trigger the compressions of CTS. So, keep your wrists upright and elbows above the level of your hand if you work at a desk job, which involves typing.  

  1. Use compression gloves - You should invest in a pair of copper compression gloves. They are a revolutionary product that allows free movement of hands while providing enough compression for improved blood flow. Copper clothing offers a variety of benefits and is the ideal solution to overcome CTS and other pregnancy-related concerns. 

  1. Rest - Do not overlook the pain in your hands when you feel it. It is essential to take breaks and remain well-rested throughout this time for optimal comfort. If you are undertaking a desk job, ensure a rest time every hour to perform light stretches and shake your hands frequently to get the blood flowing. 

  1. Keep your wrists elevated - Use pillows to lift your wrists when working, to maintain a healthy blood blow to your fingers. The circulation will ensure the reduction of insensitivity and pain in your hands.

  1. Sign-up for physical therapy - If the pain shoots up to being unbearable, consult your doctor for a recommended occupational therapy. Acupuncture and myofascial release therapy, which includes massages, are effective and reliable treatment options for CTS. 

  1. Practice yoga - Yoga stretches, when performed with guided attention, have been found to help overcome the symptoms of CTS. Regular yoga sessions, specifically designed for mums-to-be, will mitigate the effects of CTS early on so that you won't have to suffer post-pregnancy. 

  1. Take pain relievers - You can consult your doctor for pain-killers and relieving medicines such as Tylenol, which are non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication safe for pregnant women. Make sure the dosage remains as directed in your prescription to avoid any unnecessary side effects or complications. 

If your numbness does not diminish even after trying the solutions mentioned in this article, do not disrupt your sleep over it. Even though pregnancy-induced carpal tunnel syndrome does not necessarily get complicated ideally, in case of persistence of any of the symptoms, sign yourself up for therapy. In case the condition of CTS gets critical, consult your doctor immediately for help to curb the chances of any permanent damage. 

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