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I don’t write here anymore but you’ll find much more natural self-help & symptom relief from me at Carpal Tunnel Pain Relief.  (<– click the link!)

It’s my updated “sister” site to this one.  You’ll also discover WHY you have symptoms–things that your doctor may not even know!

And, while you are there, you can get my free report: “What 9 Out Of 10 Doctors Won’t Tell You About Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.”

Get articles, videos and much, much more to help you get rid of your carpal tunnel pain naturally!

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Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is most often caused by muscles that are tight in the front of your body*, so it makes sense that stretching those muscles–getting them back to your old neutral position–will help get rid of your carpal tunnel symptoms.  (* Your whole body works together; your hand/wrist/arm is not separate from the rest of your body.  It’s all attached.)

Stretching will do a lot of good things for you, including:

1.  Stretching the muscles that need to be stretched will help your body stay “balanced.”

2.  Stretching moves things: it will improve the flow of lymph fluid and blood thoughtout your whole body.

3.  Stretching will improve your posture.  When your posture is straighter, your organs will be able to function better; they won’t be squashed and compressed.

4.  Stretching feels good.  Your body likes to move and stretch.  Your body will thank you for it after it remembers what it felt like.

5.  Stretching will help you feel younger and have less pain.

6.  Stretching will help your range-of-motion improve.  You will have more movement if you stretch your short muscles.

7.  Stretching will make your muscles–and your body–happy!

8.  Stretching will help reverse soft tissue (muscle) restrictions from repetitive movement.

Most of us spend most of our time with our heads and hands in front of our body.  Lots of our time is spent in a seated position.  These things shorten the muscles in the front of your body.

We stop doing the whole-body range of things that we did naturally and easily when we were children.  We get stiff and blame our inability to move on “old age.”  But, really it’s not old age.  It’s getting old ahead of our time because our muscles need to be moved and stretched and balanced again.

WHICH MUSCLES SHOULD YOU STRETCH?

The muscles that most often need to be stretched are in the FRONT of your body.  The front of your arms, neck, chest, abdomen and thighs get shortened from sitting.  Gravity also pulls us forward and shortens the same muscles.  When you stretch the front of your body, you create more muscular balance.

If you stretch the muscles on the backside of your body, and not the ones in front, you aren’t meeting the needs of your body.  As a rule, strengthen the muscles on your back side and stretch the muscles on the front of your body.

Think of how a baby, a dog or cat stretches when it wakes up.  They stretch the whole front of their bodies, don’t they?  Their legs and arms go back, their belly gets long, and their muscles wake up!

If you stretch like a baby and open up the front of your body, it will help relax some of the muscles that are causing your carpal tunnel symptoms.

And, that’s a good thing.

“Because You Deserve to Feel Better!”

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What a great show today at Carpal Tunnel Radio.  If you missed it live, you are welcome to listen to the replay anytime!

My guest, Harriet Cole, and I talked about the importance of nutrition and supplements.  We also talked about how important it is for you to take responsibility for your own health and wellness.  Sometimes, you just have to be your own “health care provider.”

When you are healthy, you are much less likely to get problems like Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.  And, if you do get a soft tissue (muscular) disorder, it’s so much easier for your body to heal when it has all of the nutrients it needs.

Harriet made the analogy of a little red sports car that your dad gave to you on your 16th birthday.  He said, “Take good care of this car, because it has to last you for your lifetime.”

You would take very good care of that little red car, because it’s the only one you’d ever have; it would have to last your whole life time.  Do you see where I’m going here? 😉

The body you have is the only one you will have for your whole life.  You wouldn’t put soda pop into your little red car, because it wouldn’t run.  You would “feed” it the appropriate foods–you’d give it what it needs.

Your body has needs, too.  Give your body the “fuel” it needs and you will discover that your carpal tunnel symptoms and other pain will begin to heal. Bodies love to heal, sometimes they just need a little “encouragement.”

To listen in:  Carpal Tunnel Radio We’d love to “see” you there!

“Because You Deserve to Feel Better!”

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Did you know that most carpal tunnel symptoms are caused by triggers?  Something occurs that causes your symptoms.  That’s how bodies work–you only get a symptom if something happens to cause that symptom–a trigger.

Here are some common triggers that cause Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

  1. Bone structure which is not symmetrical.  One leg may be actually longer than the other, for instance.  I know it’s a far distance from your carpal tunnel, but it causes neck strain and that can  cause Carpal Tunnel symptoms.
  2. Collapsing-forward or forward-head posture.  This causes a lot of muscle stress which can generate “trigger points.”  (Trigger points can cause carpal tunnel symptoms!)
  3. Repetitive movements that are done in out-of-neutral positions.
  4. Mineral deficiencies and vitamin deficiencies.  Or, too much of a certain mineral or vitamin.
  5. Certain metabolic disorders.  Anemia, thyroid disorders, or blood disorders.
  6. Allergies and asthma; chronic infections.  (If you “hike” your shoulders up or are a chest-breather, it will cause carpal tunnel symptoms.)
  7. Stress.

Of course, you don’t have all of these triggers, but my guess is that you have at least one of them.  Forward-head posture is quite possibly the most common trigger.

You can go to the March 5, 2009 edition of CarpalTunnelRadio and learn more about triggers.  It’s just 15 minutes long, so it gives you a good excuse to take a little break and have a cup of tea.

“Because You Deserve to Feel Better!”

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If we all had perfect posture, we would have a hardly any pain!

Carpal tunnel symptoms can begin when your muscles are strained and out of balance.  Sometimes it’s not so much the work we do, it’s that we develop poor and weak posture.  This causes trigger points (crabby areas of muscle) that “fire” into your carpal tunnel area and cause pain and other symptoms.

We can get out of perfect posture in lots of way.  Moms hold babies on one hip for long periods.  Kids play video games with all hunched over.  We sit at desks that don’t fit.  We work at repetitive jobs without taking a stretch break.

If you work at a desk or computer, you can discover how to position yourself in ways that will help avoid pain at Pain Relief Ergonomics.  Sometimes we just get into habits without even realizing what we are doing.  We don’t figure it out until part of our body starts to complain (carpal tunnel symptoms.)

Having someone point out what to do to prevent pain syndromes–someone who can show us how to change our working posture–is a good thing.

When you are seated at your desk or computer, the following things will help your posture become straighter and stronger.

  • Lift the crown of your head.
  • Lift your chest.
  • Suck your abdomen back to your spine.

If you are standing, you can do the same things, and also let your knees be “soft” (not locked back.)

I’m always reminding you about your posture, because the muscles in your neck and the front of your upper body are frequently causes of your carpal tunnel symptoms.  Help your muscles be where they want to be and they will cause you less distress.

If you feel that these movements feel stressful to your body, that’s because you’re not used to them yet.  Your body is used to collapsing forward.  You used to be straight and strong, and you can get there again.  Another place to get help on your posture is Simple Strengthening.  I have lots of articles there for you.

When your posture is better, your carpal tunnel symptoms will be less and so will all of your other aches and pains.

That’s how your body works.

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There are two types of treatment for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: conventional medical treatment, which is what most doctors offer; and natural treatment, which does not include medicine or surgery.

Conventional and natural treatments are sometimes used together.

Natural treatments include massage, ice, heat, vitamin supplements and correcting posture and other habits (like how you watch tv or sit at your desk.)

If you can get rid of your carpal tunnel symptoms without the pain and recovery time of surgery, wouldn’t you rather do that?  No scar, no anesthesia, no chance of your symptoms coming back.

Why would your carpal tunnel symptoms come back?

Because sometimes, maybe 50% of the time, the surgery to release the tight, tough tissue around your carpal tunnel only addresses the symptoms.  The cause may be elsewhere–not in your wrist–but in your neck, arm, or other muscles.

So a big benefit of natural treatment for your carpal tunnel symptoms is that you are getting at the root–the cause–of your pain, numbness or tingling.  Some of the natural treatments do help you feel better, just like conventional ones, but you don’t have side effects or after effects.

Natural relief techniques for carpal tunnel syndrome may be just what you need.

“Because You Deserve to Feel Better!”

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The medical community knows there is a connection between Vitamin B6 deficiency and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS.)

But the question is:  Why would people have a vitamin B6 deficiency?

Here is an answer from the “Encyclopedia of Healing Foods.”

Dr. Michael Murray says that since 1950, CTS has increased “in parallel with the increased presence of compounds that interfere with vitamin B6 in the body.”  In particular, Mr. Murray says that tartrazine (FD&C Yellow #5) is added to “neary every packaged food” and interferes with B6 absorption.  In the US, he says, the average daily intake of certified dyes, like FD&C Yellow #5, is 15 milligrams.  85% of that is tartrazine.

That might not sound like a lot to you, but all those little bits add up and do not improve your health.

Dr. Murray suggests not eating foods with tartrazine and increasing foods rich in vitamin B6 to help relieve CTS.

If you read labels, you will find ingredients like FD&C Yellow #5 all over the place.  My friend found it in the horseradish sauce she was using at lunch.

Dr. Murray also suggested taking fresh pineapple juice and ginger for their anti-inflammatory properties when you are having a CTS flare-up.  Curcumin, which comes from turmeric, is also good for that reason.

So, now you might even know something that your doctor doesn’t know about why people have deficiencies in vitamin B6!

I hope you read labels and eat the foods that give you the most benefit.  Those would be the foods that are as close to nature as possible.

“Because You Deserve to Feel Better!”

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One of my clients, Kay, sometimes complained to me about carpal tunnel area pain.

I gave her a copy of my tips booklet for carpal tunnel pain relief (soon to be available for you.)

After a few weeks, Kay told me, “I probably don’t remember 95 out of the 99 tips provided.  But I do recall and have used the tip to sleep on my back.  All I know is since I’ve started doing this, my wrists rarely hurt now.”

So how could sleeping on your back help your carpal tunnel pain?

Well, like all pain, carpal tunnel syndrome has a cause. In fact, it often has several causes.

When you sleep on your side, it tends to squash or jam your shoulders forward.  This can cause arm and wrist pain because it compresses or squeezes the muscles, blood vessels and nerves in your neck and shoulders.

Side-sleeping also causes the muscles on the front of your arms and chest to shorten.  And short chest, neck and shoulder muscles are another cause of arm and wrist pain.

When you sleep on your back, your shoulders fall back to the mattress.  This takes pressure off your shoulders and neck.

It’s also important to prop your neck and head only the minimum that you need for comfort.  Pressing your head too far forward with a pillow that is too fat isn’t good for your arms, either.

Use a pillow that supports the small curve in your neck.  Your pillow should allow your head and neck to feel comfortable and relaxed.

If you can also sleep with your arms at your sides, rather than curled up to your chest or neck, it will further help relax and stretch your muscles.

Your muscles need a break after working hard all day.

For almost all of the day, your arms and head were in front of your body, even while you relaxed.  Give them the chance to open up and stretch.

Sleeping on your back can help get rid of your carpal tunnel pain.  It eliminates one of the causes of arm, wrist and hand pain.

The more causes you can eliminate, the less carpal tunnel pain you will have.

“Because You Deserve To Feel Better!”

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If you have carpal tunnel syndrome, you might have already considered seeing a massage therapist.  You might be wondering whether massage can help relieve carpal tunnel pain.

The answer is yes, absolutely!  If, that is, the massage professional you see has a good working knowledge of what exactly can cause pain in the carpal tunnel area.

CTS is often misdiagnosed by doctors.  It is possible that you have muscle strain or some other problem, rather than true carpal tunnel syndrome.  Most likely, massage will help you relieve that, too.

CTS is frequently mistreated by massage therapists.  Many don’t have the background or training to understand why you have pain in your carpal tunnel area.  They will work on the painful area, but you may notice that does not give you any relief.

That is because they are working on the symptom and not on the cause of your pain.

Here’s how to interview a massage therapist you are considering working with to relieve your carpal tunnel pain.  Most therapists will be happy to give you a free consultation.

(By the way, do not ask, “Do you work with people with carpal tunnel pain?” or “Do you treat carpal tunnel syndrome?”  There are massage therapists who will say they do, even though they have no positive experience or specific training.)

Instead, ask him or her the following seven questions, and listen closely.  See if the answers are logical and make sense to you.

  1. What are the most common causes of carpal tunnel syndrome?
  2. Will you be able to determine why I have pain?
  3. What is your pain treatment strategy?
  4. What type of massage training did you have?
  5. What muscles are most likely involved in my specific situation?
  6. How long do you think it will take for me to feel better?
  7. Will there be pain or discomfort from the massage treatment?

I will warn you in advance:  there may be some discomfort caused by the massage.  The reason is simple.  If your muscles were strained, they became tight.  When we press into tight muscles, it will usually cause discomfort.  It may be only a little, or feel like “good pain,” or it may be quite intense.

Discomfort during or after a massage session is not necessarily a bad thing.  Sometimes it is unavoidable.

Always talk with your massage therapist and give him or her feedback.  He or she wants to know how you are feeling, and they want you to feel better after their treatment.

“Because You Deserve to Feel Better!”

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Here are four more simple carpal tunnel pain relief tips for you.

  1. Do a whole body movement, like walking, at least 3 or 4 times each week.  Do it for 20-30 minutes each time.  Walking while you “pump” your arms uses all of your arm and shoulder muscles.  It gets your blood and lymph fluids flowing to help flush metabolic wastes from your arms and hands.
  2. Join a yoga or tai chi class, or get a video to work with at home.  The various torso and arm stretches (there are more in yoga than tai chi) are very beneficial.  The stretches open the front of the body and move the arms in different ways than usual.  Moving in different ways than the way that you usually move reduces hand, wrist and arm pain.
  3. If you use a treadmill, hold the sides loosely if you need to hold them at all.  Holding the front bar perpetuates forward head posture and can cause low back stress as well as arm and hand pain.  If you hold the side bars instead of the front bar you will have a more natural head and neck position.  This helps reduce carpal tunnel pain that comes from your neck.  Holding loosely, rather than tightly, reduces pressure on your hands and wrists.
  4. Use an electric can opener or hold your wrist straight while using a twist opener.  If you place the bottom of the can on a cloth, the cloth and can will spin as you open it.  You won’t be twisting your wrist, and you won’t have to hold the can up, either.  There will just be a small side to side movement at your wrist.

Take this stuff and use it.

“Because You Deserve To Feel Better!”

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