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ISO relief from severe carpal tunnel issues — The Grow Network Community
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ISO relief from severe carpal tunnel issues

vickeymvickeym Posts: 653 ✭✭✭✭
edited November 2020 in General Health

My BFF is having severe pain almost to the point of not being able to use her hand because of carpal tunnel issues. She will be going in for surgery but it is still a month or so away.

I have given her arnica oil as well as a salve made with Arnica, Eucalyptus, Peppermint and ginger. Both seem to help a little, but she is hurting so much she can barely sleep.

Can anyone recommend something that could ease her pain until they do her surgery?


  • sallyhowardsallyhoward AustraliaPosts: 106 ✭✭✭

    Doterra's Ice Blue rub, is pricey but good.

  • LaurieLovesLearningLaurieLovesLearning Moderator Manitoba, Canada 🍁 zone 3, PrairiesPosts: 3,681 admin
    edited June 2020

    One young gal that I knew used egg yolk mixed with turmeric and put it on an injury.

    I know that vit. B6 is helpful, and I used it to help me some when I was expecting, but had to keep my dose low. Carpal tunnel would keep me up at night then.

    The key would be to use an inflammatory herb to bring down the swelling. Maybe @torey or another herbalist here has some good ideas. I would be interested in what they have to say as well, because I struggle with it every day now. I did have great success with acupressure treatments, but it took awhile, my practitioner was far away (and so both became expensive) and now she has carpal tunnel too.

    Sometimes it is painful, and usually my hands are tingly or numb. It is just a part of my life now and makes many tasks difficult.

    I want to avoid surgery as long as possible. Some have success, but I've read that 75% have it return. I just don't want to go there.

    I did some looking. I found some helpful advice. It might be worth your friend to try these things & maybe even avoid that surgery.

  • herbantherapyherbantherapy Posts: 454 ✭✭✭✭

    Idk about carpal tunnel but my mom swears that soaking her hands in cooled nettle tea is a huge relief for rheumatoid arthritis.

  • tomandcaratomandcara Colorado front range- Denver MetroPosts: 699 ✭✭✭✭

    @vickeym If your friend can find a chiropractor who is trained in extremity adjusting it can be very helpful. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is caused by the median nerve being compressed between the ligament that goes between the 2 forearm bones and the wrist bones underneath. The surgical approach is to cut the ligament, which opens up the tunnel by opening the "roof" and relieving the nerve compression. The extremity adjusting brings the forearm bones together, lowering the "floor" of the tunnel to relieve the compression. There is more to do than just move the forearm bones, but if your friend can find the right chiropractor, they will know the other things to do to give long term relief. I have treated a number of patients with this problem and had excellent results with some, while others have had to proceed with the surgery.

  • toreytorey Posts: 2,571 admin

    @vickeym There are several things that your friend could try.

    First, I agree with @tomandcara that a Chiropractor is a good choice. My daughter is a Registered Massage Therapist and she also has some experience with treating carpal tunnel. Definitely treatments to check out before surgery.

    I think @herbantherapy's suggestion of nettle tea for a soak is a good one. Certainly couldn't hurt.

    I also agree with @LaurieLovesLearning. Acupressure or acupuncture is a good alternative for relief of symptoms. Also agree with Vitamin B6 supplementation. She has provided a great link from Richter's.

    Curcuma longa - Turmeric. Many people find relief from Turmeric. It can be taken as a supplement and/or a topical preparation. Sometimes it can be found in combination with other anti-inflammatory herbs. A note of warming, Turmeric may stain clothing and skin if using topically.

    Boswellia serrata - Frankincense. This is available in several forms. There is an essential oil that is recommended for joint pain and other musculo-skeletal issues, to be used topically in a carrier oil. However, Frankincense EO is quite expensive. Boswellia is available as a supplement. Take according to package directions. Sometimes it may come in combination with other herbs (Turmeric, Ginger, Black Pepper, etc.) . Boswellia is also available as a homeopathic remedy but that is based on matching a totality of all symptoms.

    Populus trichocarpa or P. balsamifera - Cottonwood Bud. A salve or oil made from Cottonwood Bud is effective for a wide variety of musculo-skeletal issues. Or a salve made of 50% Cottonwood Bud oil and 50% Cayenne oil. I make this and have several clients that get a lot of relief from it.

    Sweet Marjoram EO - I have stated before that I am not an aromatherapist but I have found reference to this EO being effective in a carrier oil for carpal tunnel.

    CBD - This can be taken internally in the form of capsules, ingestible oil, gummies or hard candies. Start with a low dose and titrate up. CBD is strongly anti-inflammatory. I have had quite a bit of success with a topical salve made with CBD oil for joint and other related issues.

    Minerals - Zinc can help with both physical and mental stress. Assists with tissue repair. Magnesium will help relieve any muscle cramping that could aggravate the condition and has some anti-inflammatory properties. Most of us are deficient in Magnesium. Be cautious of the form, though. Some magnesium supplements can have a laxative effective.

    Two other homeopathic remedies that might assist are Calcium Phosphate and Actea spicata. The Calc-phos should be available in any health food store that sells remedies. It is very common and listed as one of the top remedies for carpal tunnel. A teacher of mine spoke about the use of Actea for carpal tunnel. It is less common (so more difficult to find in stores) but is available on Amazon.

    I hope your friend finds some relief from the suggestions made in this thread. Hope some of these might assist with you as well, @LaurieLovesLearning

  • vickeymvickeym Posts: 653 ✭✭✭✭

    Thank you all very much. I have carpal tunnel as well, just not as severe so we will both be trying some or all of these. The hardest part with Chiropractors, acupuncturists, and accupressure treatments is having them an hour or two away from where we live and they are not cheap by any means so it makes it hard to afford for many of us. May have to resort to this anyway in the future. But hoping some of your other suggestions can help and keep us closer to home.

    Will also let my boss know about some of this, she has rheumatoid arthritis pretty bad.

  • dimck421dimck421 Posts: 205 ✭✭✭

    CBD totally helped me! Also, my mother uses it for arthritis, and it it gives her much needed relief. Make sure you have a good clean source.

  • dipat2005dipat2005 Posts: 327 ✭✭✭

    I don't know if this will help but I bought wrist braces. After I was diagnosed with (pseudo gout) not carpal tunnel I have been using compression gloves and love them. My fingers that try to do acrobatics are stopped from doing that and other fingers that hurt are pain free as soon as I put them on. I really dislike using prescription medicines.

  • shllnzlshllnzl Southwestern UtahPosts: 1,467 ✭✭✭✭

    @dipat2005 Wrist braces are recommended for night time wear because people tend to bend their wrists wrongly while sleeping. If you wear wrist braces during the day, your body will work muscles in an odd fashion trying to work around the restrictions (I verified that information while using braces.)

    I wear compression gloves when my finger arthritis is bothering me and the gloves do provide relief.

  • vickeymvickeym Posts: 653 ✭✭✭✭

    dipat2005 and shllnzl Thank you both. We do both have braces. My friend needs to wear hers a bit more. Also, she does a large amount of sewing, and other crafting the puts a great deal of strain on her hands.

    Will look into compression gloves for us both.

  • shllnzlshllnzl Southwestern UtahPosts: 1,467 ✭✭✭✭

    @vickeym The reason I did not rush out for the carpal tunnel surgery is because of the lasting effects in the non-pain area: The surgery cuts a protective cartilage at the bottom of the wrist, thereby removing a barrier to injury. With my physical job, I figured I would injure myself badly if I got the surgery. (Of course, now I know more about medical treatments, so I will try to avoid any drastic treatments. Don't get me started on what I learned after having bunion surgery....and cancer treatments...)

  • vickeymvickeym Posts: 653 ✭✭✭✭

    shllnzl Good warning. I have a bunion as well. Mainly it does not interfere too much so I just leave it alone. Thought of trying one of those adjustment things you can buy. But have heard they don't do much. Was strange since it happened almost overnight. Woke up one day with my big toe all swollen and painful. Could not put shoe on and could hardly walk. Had it checked at emergency, thinking I had somehow broken my toe. They gave me gout medicine without waiting for any test results and told me to go to my regular doctor. Went to my husbands doctor as I did not have one at the time. He said it wasn't gout, told me to quit taking medicine and never said or did anything else about it. Did not find out what it was for a few years after that. Also, quit going to that doctor. lol

  • shllnzlshllnzl Southwestern UtahPosts: 1,467 ✭✭✭✭

    @vickeym I have seen pictures of severe foot distortion that is supposedly caused by bunion problems -- I think maybe that disfigurement is caused by severe arthritis?

    Anyway, I needed to wear closed toe shoes for my job and my bunion was pretty painful. I got the surgery and healed pretty well. Later on, I started feeling pain in the bones at the top of my foot so I went back to foot doctor. He explained to me that them breaking and moving my big toe causes me to walk differently now; the only way to fix it would be to shorten another toe to correct my toe placement.

    So, bottom line is unless your bunion is severe (and doctor had told me sometimes people come in too late for correction), I would leave your poor foot alone. I now have my other four toes on that foot scrunched up to walk, periodic foot pain and foot swelling. I am also retired now and I don't need to wear safety shoes anymore.

  • VickiPVickiP Posts: 567 ✭✭✭✭

    My husband was in construction for most of his adult life, by the time he was 60 he had severe carpel tunnel in both hands, he tried and used almost every remedy mentioned in this thread. He finally at 65 had the surgery, he has had it in both wrists. The best non surgical help he had were the braces at night and he took hydrangea root, MSM etc for the arthritis, which did help with the general pain. So far, he is glad he had the surgery. But it does have some side effects that they don't warn you about, the recovery, for him was pretty painful so he took CBC oil for that. I hope you find something that helps your friend.

  • vickeymvickeym Posts: 653 ✭✭✭✭

    Wanted to thank everyone who has answered. My friend informed me tonight that her surgery is now scheduled for Wednesday. I will be praying it brings her relief. The other hand has not done so well after the surgery.

  • dipat2005dipat2005 Posts: 327 ✭✭✭

    @shllnzl I didn't know about wearing the braces at night. I woke up in the morning one day this week and I was in so much pain on the pad of the hand under the pinkie finger. I have never had pain there before. I was wearing my compression gloves all night. I used some salve that an a friend gave me and it finally went away. I must have slept wrong because besides the pain the whole hand wouldn't move.

  • shllnzlshllnzl Southwestern UtahPosts: 1,467 ✭✭✭✭

    @dipat2005 I have never tried wearing compression gloves and hand splint together at night, but I imagine it would work if you put the gloves on first. The splint would then keep your wrist flat while you sleep.

    I have found my night hand pain gets bad if I eat tomatoes during the day.

  • monica197monica197 Posts: 662 ✭✭✭✭
    edited June 2020

    As a professional Licensed Massage Therapist I have learned over the last decade of practice that where the pain is the problem isn't. What I mean is that the issue might be coming from her NECK. When neck muscles get tight they can impede nerve function of the brachial and ulnar nerves causing pain in the wrist. She might get a massage once a week for the next 3-4 weeks and see how she feels. And when I say massage I don't me a 'was on, wax off Danielson' type of massage or a Massage Envy fluff and buff. Look for someone in your area who does therapeutic bodywork and 'interview them' on the phone to see if they can help you. So when you go in if you want them to work on your neck they should work on your neck - not your back, your feet, your legs...your neck.

    You never know, it just might help. :-)

  • vickeymvickeym Posts: 653 ✭✭✭✭

    My friend does see a massage therapist. Not sure how often. She does work her neck as well as other areas. Unfortunately my friend has several pain issues. Along with having carpal tunnel she was in a bad car accident a few years back (rear ended by a kid with no registration and no insurance.) He hit her hard enough that the car was totaled, she ended up with ribs broken so badly they had to put a plate in. Had her eye socket broken and the eye was laying on her cheek. It has never healed properly either. That eye will always be a little bulged now. She has had so many things to deal with and she usually is still smiling and helping everyone else. An incredible lady and a role model for many. Has lost several family members to various cancers including her husband who had 5 different kinds of cancer. After beating them into remission 3 came back at the same time and he just couldn't fight anymore. She lost her brother recently to it as well as a sister. And she still has several family memebers fighting cancer.

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