Carpal tunnel syndrome is a condition in which the median nerve is subjected to extreme pressure. This nerve is positioned in the wrist which allows movement and sensation. Once there is pressure on this nerve, it can lead to carpal tunnel syndrome.
There are various symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome that you should be familiar with. Once an individual experiences any of these symptoms, a doctor should be consulted for further assessment.
Symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome
Sensations of pain, tingling and numbness
These are the initial symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome that can occur in the hands, forearm and wrist. The pain and numbness in these areas is usually intense. The pain causes discomfort and can disrupt with daily activities. In addition, the pain often keeps an individual awake at night time even from deep sleep.
There is also stiffness or rigidity in the hand upon waking up in the morning that can make simple activities difficult. The pain and numbness progressively worsen over time. The tingling is often felt with the condition as well that is described as a “pins and needles” sensation throughout the hands, forearm and wrists.
Loss of muscular strength
A usual symptom of carpal tunnel syndrome involves loss of muscular strength in the hand, wrist and fingers. As the pain progresses so does the muscle pain. The fingers, mainly the thumb loses muscle strength. Engaging in activities that involves the thumb are harder to accomplish.
Since the thumb is essential in performing various tasks, it becomes a difficult adjustment. Once there is pain and loss of muscle strength, holding objects can be difficult, even impossible sometimes.
An individual with carpal tunnel syndrome can end up dropping objects randomly for no evident reason. Since the muscles weaken and compress the nerve, the individual might drop objects accidentally.
Even though the fingers do not appear swollen, it is a symptom that is experienced by those who have carpal tunnel syndrome. Oftentimes, the individual claims that the fingers feel as if they are swollen and useless.
Inability to differentiate cold or hot
Another distinct symptom of carpal tunnel syndrome is inability to differentiate between hot and cold. As the condition progresses, the individual has difficulty in feeling temperature of certain objects.
Once the individual experiences this symptom, he/she must be careful when touching objects that can burn the skin.
There is also a burning sensation in the hands. Take note that the burning feeling usually occurs at times when the individual is asleep or the hand is resting. The burning sensation is often felt around the thumb and the 2 adjacent fingers.
The itchiness of the hand can be felt in the thumb and 2 neighboring fingers. The sensation often occurs with numbness that others claim as a result of compression of the median nerve. In most cases, the itchiness is often subtle, but not noticeable.
This is a sensation that the affected hand has “fallen asleep”. The individual has an urge to shake his/her hands to “awaken” it. Take note that this feeling often occurs in the morning. After a night of rest, there is a need to awaken the hands.
Always bear in mind that the hand is not asleep but due to the compression of the nerves, it makes it feel as if the hand is asleep. Take note that this could not be relieved by shaking it.