Pregnancy induced carpal tunnel can be a painful hindrance to a lot of things, your job, your life, and your PRENATAL YOGA PRACTICE! The main cause of carpal tunnel during pregnancy is inflammation and swelling. There are a few things you can do to reduce inflammation. Of course they work better if you do them daily or just consistently:
- Drink dandelion leaf tea or Dandelion Leaf Extract. It is a great diuretic, and since it is high in potassium, it helps your body stay balanced.
- Mother To Be Tea also helps reduce retention of fluid.
- Begin every day with a cup of warm water and 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice. If you need to sweeten it, use Stevia. This combination helps to flush your kidneys. It helps prevent constipation and it helps reduce edema or swelling. Eat apricots or bananas to get extra potassium.
- Place ice packs on your wrists for 10 minutes once or twice a day to reduce inflammation, especially after your prenatal yoga practice or after work.
- Sleep with wrists splints/brace that you can purchase at any pharmacy.
- Essential Oils – Marjoram, diluted with a carrier oil for aches and pains; Eucalyptus for circulation; Lemongrass, Rosemary for inflammation; Peppermint for pain relief. Organic Aromas carries 100% Organic Pure Essential Oils.
Five To Ten Minutes To Relieve Those Carpal Tunnel Aches And Pains
Below you will find six exercises you can do every day or every couple of days for your carpal tunnel syndrome. If you’re practicing prenatal yoga, take a few minutes before class begins and run through these simple warm ups. Your wrists will feel much better. You can also do these carpal tunnel exercises at your desk or even at the kitchen table!
Begin with your neck and shoulders.
You might wonder why we are starting carpal tunnel exercises with neck and shoulders. Just like that old children’s song, “Dem Bones,” it’s all connected.
The finger bone’s connected to the hand bone,
The hand bone’s connected to the arm bone,
The arm bone’s connected to the shoulder bone,
Now shake dem skeleton bones!
Sometimes your carpal tunnel issues begin at the neck and shoulders. You can start with some shoulder rolls forward and back. Then sitting up straight in a chair, tilt your head to the right. Hold it. Let your head feel heavy so that just the weight of your head tilted creates the stretch. Take 5 deep, slow breaths. See if you can silently count so that each inhale and each exhale is at least 3 seconds long. Close your eyes and allow yourself to relax into the stretch. Never force it. Repeat on the other side.
Now with your left hand hold the side of your chair. Take a deep inhale and as you exhale, tilt your head to the right, then lean your upper body a little to the right. The stretch should feel good. Sweep your right hand up and around and place it gently on the left side of your face. Don’t pull. Let the weight of the hand on the side of your head enhance the stretch without pulling on your head. Again, take 5 deep, slow breaths, each 3 seconds long. Repeat on the left side.
Good Posture and an Upper Back Arch
Now sit as far back on your chair as you are able. Sit up as tall and straight as you can. It feels like exaggerated good posture. Interlace your fingers and place your hands at the base of your skull with your elbows pointing forward and up. Now, inhale and lift your chest and press your elbows open and back. It should feel as though you are arching your upper back. Exhale and release. Inhale and repeat. Exhale and Release. Repeat these moves 5-10 times.
Moving, Bending The Wrists
Interlace your fingers with your palms facing your body. Begin to bend your wrists as close to 90 degrees as shown in the photos. Keep switching. You’ll be helping the blood flow to the area and warm up those muscles. Repeat several times until you feel as though your wrists are a bit more warmed up and more flexible, about 10 times each. You can change the direction from up and down to forward and back. When you are finished, shake your hands out and roll your hands around as though you are just trying to loosen things up.
Stretch Your Fingers
As you sit tall in your chair, extend your arms straight out to the side. Extend your arms as straight as you comfortably are able to. Bend your wrists so your fingers point to the ceiling. Spread your fingers wide. You can begin to rotate the hands slowly so your fingers face forward and then face backwards, kind of like you’re opening a big pickle jar. You’ll feel a good stretch all the way through your fingers, and maybe a bit of tingling too. After a few rotations, make a fist with your hands and tuck your hands under. Shake out your hands when you are done.
Hands and Knees
Your last carpal tunnel exercise is great to do before or during your yoga practice. Come to your hands and knees. Knees are right under your hips and hands are right under the shoulders to start. Slide your hands back toward your knees, nice and close. Place the top of the hands on the mat or floor with your fingers facing your knees. Take a deep inhale and as you exhale begin to sit back on to your heels, or as far as you can go, and continue to keep your hands in contact with the floor. Now you can either try to make a fist and open and close it or you can wiggle your fingers. Again, shake out your wrist and hands.