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What are the Different Types of Carpal Tunnel Stretches?

By Erin J. Hill
Updated May 17, 2024
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There are various carpal tunnel stretches that one can complete in order to relieve pain and discomfort associated with carpal tunnel syndrome. Most of these stretches involve pulling or stretching the fingers in certain directions to help relieve pressure on the wrist. Some also involve bending or stretching the wrist to loosen the joint and prevent stiffness from setting in. Doing all types of carpal tunnel stretches several times a day is important for those who work at a computer for several hours each day.

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a condition that causes severe, and often debilitating, pain on or around the wrists. It is most commonly noticed in those who work at desk jobs or otherwise type on a computer several hours a day. By doing stretches, one can help prevent the negative effects of carpal tunnel from taking a toll on work performance and quality of life.

Most of the different types of carpal tunnel stretches involve stretching the fingers. First, the fingers should be pulled backward slowly and held for a count of five. This stretches the muscle in the front of the wrist. Next, the thumb should be pulled toward the chest and then downward. Both moves should be performed on each hand.

Other types of carpal tunnel stretches slowly stretch the muscles directly in the wrist. One such exercise requires that one stand at a table or flat surface and place both hands firmly on the top with the fingers of each hand facing each other. Press down so that both wrists are being stretched simultaneously outward. This stretches the front portion of the joint. Next, make a fist with both hands and then stretch them down toward the floor for five seconds.

Finally, each finger should be pulled slowly and firmly for several seconds. If they make a loud popping sound, it’s all right. This will not cause joint pain or arthritis. By doing this exercise, the fingers will become more limber and able to type for longer periods of time.

If at any time carpal tunnel symptoms become severe or the wrist is hard to move, a doctor should be notified immediately. In some rare cases, carpal tunnel syndrome may result in surgery or prescription pain medications to alleviate pain. Wrists may need to bandaged and typing may be limited until the wrist has healed.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
By anon71343 — On Mar 18, 2010

On a recent morning when i woke up from the bed, i had a tingling from the root of the left thumb up to its nail. it is still here now. is it a symptom of carpal tunnel syndrome? --vinod

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