Celebrate the Season with Bob's holiday deal! Save 20% on 10 Bodywork Sessions - Offer ends 12/24!
1666 Massachusetts Ave, Lexington, MA
(781) 860-2324

Unlock Fast and Effective Relief from Carpal Tunnel Pain through Bodywork

Last Updated: April 1, 2024

Living with carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) can be tough. But regular massage therapy and bodywork sessions can provide effective, non-surgical relief for hand and wrist pain associated with this condition.

At Bodywork Masters, our licensed massage therapists specialize in treating carpal tunnel using customized bodywork techniques to reduce pressure on the median nerve.

What is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?

Carpal tunnel syndrome occurs when the median nerve, which runs from the forearm into the hand, becomes compressed at the wrist in the carpal tunnel area.

The carpal tunnel is a narrow passageway surrounded by bones and ligaments on the palm side of the wrist. It forms a tunnel that houses the median nerve and finger tendons.

Diagram of carpal tunnel syndrome with median nerve compression

When overused or inflamed, the tissues inside the carpal tunnel can swell and put pressure on the median nerve. This leads to:

  • Tingling, numbness, and “pins and needles” in the thumb, fingers, and hand
  • Reduced grip strength and trouble grasping things
  • Burning, shooting, or aching wrist and hand pain, especially at night
  • General clumsiness of the hand

Contributing factors include repetitive motions like typing, arthritis, pregnancy, anatomical susceptibility, past injuries, and diabetes.

Spotting and treating carpal tunnel syndrome early is key to prevent permanent nerve damage and loss of hand function.

How Can Massage Therapy and Bodywork Help with Carpal Tunnel Pain?

The various techniques used in massage therapy and bodywork are very effective for relieving carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms by:

  • Increasing blood flow to the hand and wrist, which reduces swelling
  • Relaxing the muscles of the forearms, wrists, and hands
  • Releasing built-up adhesions and scar tissue around the median nerve
  • Stretching and moving the tissue and joints around the wrist area

This full-body approach takes pressure off the median nerve and brings fresh blood to the area, providing quick and lasting relief from hand and wrist pain.

Thorough Assessment is Key

Proper assessment is important for tailoring massage therapy to each client’s one-of-a-kind needs. Carpal tunnel syndrome is rarely an issue just in the wrist alone. Our holistic approach looks at the whole body.

Our comprehensive assessment includes:

  • A full-body session focusing on the wrists, hands and arms
  • Checking for tightness or trigger points in the neck, shoulders, chest, and upper back
  • Testing range of motion in the wrists, elbows, and shoulders
  • Evaluating posture to see if there is extra strain on your arms

Looking at the whole body allows the bodyworker to customize the massage for your needs. They can find and treat all the areas causing tension and compression – not just the wrist. Releasing tightness in the muscles, fascia (connective tissue) and joints from your neck down to your hands provides more complete and longer-lasting relief.

Massage Techniques Used to Treat Carpal Tunnel

At Bodywork Masters, our massage therapists use a combination of massage and bodywork techniques that help provide relief for carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms.

Bodyworker using deep tissue massage on hand and wrist to treat carpal tunnel pain.

Deep Tissue Massage

Deep tissue massage uses slower motions and more pressure to reach deeper muscle layers and connective tissue. This helps in many ways:

  • It loosens up tight muscles that are squeezing and pressing on the carpal tunnel area in the wrist.
  • It increases blood flow to the affected muscles and tissues, bringing fresh nutrients.
  • It breaks up any thick, stuck-together scar tissue that built up from overuse or swelling.
  • It relieves wrist and hand pain by causing the body to release its natural pain-relieving substances called endorphins.

Myofascial Release

Myofascial release uses gentle but firm pressure on the fascia tissue to bring it back to proper alignment. This technique helps by:

  • Releasing tightness in the fascia around the carpal tunnel area that is squeezing the nerve
  • Stretching out the tight fascia tissue to make more space in the wrist
  • Allowing you to bend and move your wrists and fingers better
  • Reducing swelling and pain in the wrist

Trigger Point Therapy

Trigger point therapy Trigger point therapy uses firm pressure on tight, painful knots in the muscles. This helps in a few ways:

  • It targets and relaxes the muscle knots in the forearms, and the muscles that bend and straighten the wrist. These knots squeeze the nerves.
  • Relaxing these tight muscles takes the pressure off the nerve running through the wrist.
  • Pressing on the knots brings more blood flow to the tight, starved muscles. More blood means less pain.

Using these different massage techniques together is effective for relieving the numbness, tingling, and pain from carpal tunnel syndrome. We also educate clients on stretches, posture, and ergonomics to prevent re-injury after massage sessions.

A Real Carpal Tunnel Relief Experience

Our client, Surya, a dentist, was struggling with worsening carpal tunnel symptoms for 3 months. Her hands would tingle and go numb during procedures, causing her to fumble instruments. At night, she had shooting pains in her wrists that made it hard to sleep. Over-the-counter meds weren’t helping anymore.

On a friend’s recommendation, she booked an appointment with Bodywork Masters. Her massage therapist did a thorough assessment and mapped out a treatment plan. Surya began coming in for weekly Deep Tissue Massage and Myofascial Release sessions, and was given advice on proper wrist stretches and ergonomics.

Within 4 weeks, Surya’s hand tingling and nighttime pains were virtually eliminated. She regained confidence handling dental instruments without fumbling. Regular bodywork maintenance sessions now keep her carpal tunnel symptoms under control so she can keep working comfortably.

What to Expect During a Carpal Tunnel Bodywork Session

Sessions are focused on the arms, wrists, hands and fingers, while also addressing related areas like the neck, shoulders and upper back.

Clients relax on the massage table while different techniques are applied using light and deep pressure based on comfort levels. Communication is very important, so clients should provide feedback to the therapist throughout.

Stretching, range of motion, and exercises may be incorporated to improve wrist mobility between massage sessions.

As the body continues healing over the first 2-4 weeks, some residual tenderness is common as inflamed tissues release. Resting, heat, stretching and hydrating will help manage this.

How Often Should You Get Massage for Carpal Tunnel Relief?

For severe numbness, tingling, and loss of function, more frequent therapy may be needed:

  • 1 bodywork sessions per week initially
  • Then reduce to 1x every other week as symptoms improve
  • Consistency is key for the first 4-6 weeks
  • After that, maintenance every 4- 6 weeks

Starting bodywork early prevents prolonged nerve compression which can cause lasting damage.

Why Choose Bodywork Masters for Carpal Tunnel Relief?

At Bodywork Masters, our experienced therapists complete advanced training and stay current on the most effective massage and bodywork techniques for carpal tunnel relief.

We do a thorough assessment to create customized treatment plans based on each client’s unique needs and symptoms. You’ll never feel like “just another client” with us.

Our mission is to provide caring, patient-centered care. We listen to your needs and adjust our techniques to your comfort. No unrealistic promises – just honest, caring service.

Ready to experience the difference specialized bodywork makes? Book a carpal tunnel relief session today.  

Related Resources and Articles 

For further information and support, here are some related resources and articles:

Share post: