Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: Is this Associated with Fibromyalgia?

fibromyalgia and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

For those who are inflicted with fibromyalgia, they know firsthand what living with this illness can be. Fibromyalgia is a unique illness that affects people in numerous ways. What one person suffers with, another may not.

That is what makes this illness one that is so hard to detect and treatment paths must be catered to the individual. As more and more research is performed on this illness, more of the issues that are being associated with this illness are being found.

This is fantastic news for those who are suffering with this illness, as more knowledge can only benefit them in terms of treating this.

The Typical Fibromyalgia Symptoms

Those who go into the doctor for this issue or who are looking at what symptoms they may have will find that widespread pain is one of the most common symptoms being seen.

This is accompanied by fatigue that is more than simply not sleeping well one night. This fatigue can often make the person feel as though they cannot do anything other than sleep.

In addition, many people find that they have headaches or migraines that are simply debilitating. Other issues that are commonly seen are irritable bowel syndromes, tingling sensations in their entire body, swelling in numerous parts of the body and so on.

These symptoms are something that make life more difficult for the person who is suffering from these.

Many people report having a lack of concentration, they may be clumsy or even experience a lot of dizziness. This is an effect of the fatigue and pain that affects the person’s basic motor functioning.

There are around 10 million people throughout the world who are diagnosed with this disorder. Of those who are diagnosed, more are women.

Unfortunately, there is no clear cure for this illness. Instead, it has to be approached with lessening the symptoms and helping the person to find a shred of normal life so they are not living in agony every day.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and Fibromyalgia

One of the more interesting findings with fibromyalgia, is that many people who have this illness are also dealing with carpal tunnel syndrome.

In fact, around twenty two percent of those who are diagnosed also are diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome. The good news is that carpal tunnel syndrome is a known issue that can be treated, and for many it can be completely cured!

What is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?

Most people have heard about carpal tunnel syndrome. They often think that this is pain in the wrist or fingers. This is true, but there are other symptoms that are associated with this syndrome.

These symptoms may include:

  • Loss of sensation in the fingers
  • Numbness in the fingers

This is due to the median nerve at the wrist, and the tunnel begins to narrow. This causes the pressure on the fingers and the results are what has been termed carpal tunnel syndrome. In other situations, a person may have carpal tunnel syndrome due to the spurs on the bone.

In addition, carpal tunnel syndrome can also be genetic, since some people are born with narrower carpal tunnels that result in the compression of the nerve. Other people develop this due to making a repetitive motion. For example:

  • Those who work on computers and are constantly typing are more likely to develop this issue
  • Using power tools can cause this
  • Any type of injury to the wrist, hands or forearms can later cause this to happen
  • Anyone who makes repetitive emotions with their fingers or hands are at an increased chance of developing this issue

Treating Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

If you do have fibromyalgia and start to show signs of carpal tunnel syndrome, there are a few things you can do to help treat this at home.

While you may have more severe pain in other areas of your body, you are going to find that anyway that you can reduce your pain, the better you will feel.

A few at home treatments that you can consider:

  1. Allow the wrist to have some rest. Most recommend at least 2 weeks. You can wear a wrist splint that can help keep the wrist in the right position for healing and prevent further injury.
  2. Apply ice to the swelling that you may seeing to help with the pain.
  3. Utilize over the counter medications for pain such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen for reducing the pain.
  4. Utilizing a topical muscle relieve gel can offer some relief to those who are suffering with this pain.

Your doctor may find that these at home treatments are not enough. If this is the case, there is a surgical option.

During surgery, the doctor will cut the top of the carpal tunnel, which is meant to stop this from compressing onto the median nerve.

The recovery time is very little, and most who do have this surgical procedure find that in a few weeks they are back to normal.

There are other options as well. Many people find that a massage can help their entire body, especially if they suffer with fibromyalgia.

Reflexology is something that many massage therapists are offering those who are dealing with carpal tunnel syndrome. It can help to stimulate the blood flow and reduce the swelling that a person may be feeling.

This can greatly benefit the motion that they have, and when you are dealing with fibromyalgia, this is something that can greatly help you.

Many fibromyalgia patients report having the feeling of stiffness that makes it harder to function as they normally would.

Can you Prevent Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?

If you are already dealing with fibromyalgia, the idea of preventing other issues is one that you hold dear. There are a few ways in which you can prevent carpal tunnel syndrome.

These ways include:

  1. Avoid completing repetitive tasks when you can.
  2. If you are sitting at the computer, adjust your chair so that your hands are even with the rest of the body.
  3. Take regular breaks to avoid over doing it when you are doing something repetitive.
  4. Try stretches to help loosen up the wrists.
  5. If you are overweight, this could make carpal tunnel syndrome worse, so try to lose a bit of weight.

You will also find that moving and exercising is a great way to keep fibromyalgia at bay. While it may seem counter initiative to do this, you are going to find that exercise can keep pain and the tenderness often associated with fibromyalgia controlled.

While it may be hard for a person to do this, they are going to find that forcing yourself to do this is going to be good for you in the long run. The key is getting started and sticking to this for the long haul.

For those who are suffering with fibromyalgia, do not be surprised if are told that you do have carpal tunnel syndrome. This is not a life sentence!

There are tons of things that you can do alleviate this pain and get back to normal. Talk with your doctor about what options you have and what is going to work best for you.

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