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Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

What is carpal tunnel syndrome?

Carpal tunnel syndrome is numbness, tingling, weakness, and other problems in your hand because of pressure on the median nerve.

What causes carpal tunnel syndrome?

The pressure on the median nerve can come from swelling or anything that makes the carpal tunnel smaller. Although there are many causes, some of the most common are repetitive movement’s of the wrist and hand (like typing) or a misalignment of the shoulder, elbow or wrist. Some other causes include: rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, and other inflammatory conditions.

What are the symptoms?

Symptoms most often occur in the thumb, index finger, middle finger, and half of the ring finger. If you have problems with your other fingers but your little finger is fine, this may be a sign that you have carpal tunnel syndrome. A different nerve gives feeling to the little finger.

Tingling, numbness, weakness, or pain in the fingers or hand. Some people may have pain in their arm between their hand and their elbow.

How is it treated?

There are many treatments available that provide temporary relief such as anti-inflammatories, rest, icing, etc. However, at Tamarindo Muscle Therapy we believe it’s important to get to the root of the problem.

In carpal tunnel syndrome, although much of the focus may be on the wrist area, more than one structure may be involved, the probability of other muscles being out of balance is high. Typically people with carpal tunnel syndrome will present with an internal rotation of shoulder and arm affecting the nerve that supplies the sensation in the carpal tunnel that originates in the neck and shoulder area. It is important to release any scar tissue along the entire nerve pathway.

The Koontzin method has been very effective in treating this condition through stretching and specific manual manipulation of the soft tissue. This method relieves pressure and pain and provides a more permanent solution by treating the cause and not just the symptom.

6 Foods that reduce inflammation and joint pain

Inflammation is part of the body’s immune response; without it, we can’t heal. But when it’s out of control—as in rheumatoid arthritis—it can damage the body. Plus, it’s thought to play a role in obesity, heart disease, and cancer.

Foods high in sugar and saturated fat can spur inflammation. “They cause overactivity in the immune system, which can lead to joint pain, fatigue, and damage to the blood vessels,” says Scott Zashin, MD, clinical professor at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas.

Here are 6 examples from among many of the foods you can add to your diet to help reduce excessive inflammation:

Fatty fish: 
Oily fish, like salmon, mackerel, tuna and sardines (not fried), are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to help reduce inflammation. If your not a fish fan try fish oil supplements.

Whole Grains:
More fiber, which has been shown to reduce levels of C-reactive protein, a marker of inflammation in the blood.

Dark leafy greens:
Studies have suggested that vitamin E may play a key role in protecting the body from pro inflammatory molecules called cytokines—and one of the best sources of this vitamin is dark green veggies.

Nuts:
Another source of inflammation-fighting healthy fats is nuts—particularly almonds, which are rich in fiber, calcium, and vitamin E.

Peppers:
“Colorful vegetables are part of a healthier diet in general,” says Dr. Costenbader.They have high quantities of antioxidant vitamins and lower levels of starch.

Beets:
This vegetable’s brilliant red color is a tip-off to its equally brilliant antioxidant properties: Beets (and beetroot juice) have been shown to reduce inflammation, as well as protect against cancer and heart disease, thanks to their hearty helping of fiber, vitamin C and plant pigments called betalains.

Drugs & Inflammation

There are more drugs designed to fight inflammation in the human body than any other single category of drugs. NSAIDs are taken regularly by approximately 33 million Americans! Anti inflammatories stop or disrupt inflammation by suppressing or altering the chemical signals associated with the inflammatory response. This interrupts the natural healing process and can often lead to conditions of chronic inflammation.

Non-steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) are often used to stop inflammation, but they may not be strong enough or may have too many side effects. NSAIDs work by inhibiting production of prostaglandins, the chemicals in our bodies that enhance inflammatory effects Prostaglandins are also important to the normal functioning of a number of other processes
including digestion. Because of this, inhibition of prostaglandins by NSAIDs can cause indigestion and stomach and duodenal ulcers.

Corticosteroids are immunosuppressive. This means that they reduce the activity of your immune system. A healthy immune system helps defend your body against bacteria, viruses, and cancer.

Use of corticosteroids decreases the body’s helpful
immune activity, which can increase susceptibility
to infection and interfere with the healing process.

What about Antibiotics?

Antibiotics, he very drug prescribed to fight bacterial infections, also impair the body’s immune system. This paradoxical effect was first reported in 1950, but was dismissed because researchers could not confirm their findings. Then, in 1972 researchers at the Baylor school of medicine in Houston rediscovered that antibiotics can prevent white blood cells from attacking and destroying bacteria.

There is a wide range of natural herbs and vitamin supplements that can be taken to naturally combat many different diseases and conditions.

For example, for the natural treatment of diseases relating to your immune system and or chronic inflammation do some research on “Immunocal” a natural supplement with no side effects, that is available here Costa Rica. Ask us about Immunocal and if it’s right for you.

What is the role of inflammation in the body’s natural healing process?

The inflammatory response:

  1. Prevents the spread of damaging agents to
    nearby tissues
  2. Disposes of cell debris and pathogens and
  3. Sets the stage for the repair process.

Steps-of-Inflammatory-Response

“Inflammation is one of the most important mechanisms of host defense since it marshals the attack on the injurious agent and leads to repair of the affected tissue”

The role of inflammation in the process of healing has been misunderstood for many years. Recent neurological and immunological research has shed light on its importance in the human healing process. A clear shift in science is taking inflammation away from being the enemy of health and a condition to be suppressed and or eliminated to one in which its importance and role is allowed to proceed.

Although at first, edema may seem to be detrimental to the body, it isn’t. The entry of protein-rich fluids into the tissue spaces.

  1. Helps to dilute harmful substances, which may
    be present
  2. Brings in large quantities of oxygen and
    nutrients necessary for the repair process.
  3. Allows the entry of clotting proteins which form
    a gel like fibrin mesh in the tissue space that
    effectively isolates the injured area and prevents
    the spread of bacteria and other harmful agents
    into the adjacent tissues. Its also forms a
    scaffolding for permanent repair.

When faced with a muscle or joint injury, don’t jump right to icing the injured area. Remember that inflammation is your body’s first line of defense. The reason for icing is to decrease swelling…instead try gentle stretches or massage to increase circulation…and for muscle pain you can even try heat as a natural muscle relaxant.