Pregnancy Complications - Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Carpal tunnel syndrome is a pregnancy complication affecting up to one in three pregnant women. Caused by fluid collecting around your wrist joints and compressing on the nerves that go through the wrist into the hand, carpal tunnel can be uncomfortable and distressing for those affected.
Symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome include numbness, sometimes accompanied by pins and needles or pain in your fingers and hands. Most women find it is most bothersome first thing in the morning. However, although the condition is usually quite mild during pregnancy, it can sometimes cause severe pain and hand movements can be affected.
After pregnancy the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome usually improve within a few weeks.
There are a few things you can do to try to treat carpal tunnel syndrome:
Eat a healthy balanced diet.
Ask your midwife to provide you with a wrist support
Exercise your hands regularly by flexing and stretching your fingers for a few seconds, then relaxing them and by making a fist and again relaxing your hand. You should also roll your wrists, flick your hands from the wrist and move your hands up and down, as if waving.
Sleep with your hands raised up a little on pillows and during the day try to keep your hands raised when possible.
Alternately bathe your hands in hot and cold water.
Try some alternative therapies such as acupuncture or acupressure.
In some cases, where pain is extreme, your gp may recommend ultrasound therapy and/ or prescrible a diuretic to reduce excess fluid in your body.
More Pregnancy Complications
- Gestational Diabetes
- Placenta previa
- Cholestasis (itching during pregnancy)
- Morning sickness
- Varicose veins
- Stretch marks
- Depression (pre-natal depression)
- Childbed fever (puerperal sepsis)
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