Many people with carpal tunnel lay in bed at night wishing for better sleep while their numb hands keep them awake. During pregnancy my carpal tunnel symptoms worsened and made sleeping at night nearly impossible. Each night I would struggle to fall asleep due to the pain and after finally sleeping I would wake up to a tingling hand and even more pain. I knew that I had to find relief to the carpal tunnel pain so I could sleep at night.
After just a few weeks I knew I had to research options to help get better sleep. I couldn’t stay awake each night so I found ways to get better sleep by relieving some of the carpal tunnel pain symptoms.
Use Self-Massage For Pain Relief
For many, massage helps relive the symptoms of carpal tunnel. There are self-massage techniques you can use to help relieve and prevent carpal tunnel. You can apply a nice lotion and gently massage your hand and fingers from the tips to the palm and even past your wrist to your forearm. Keeping the muscles loose will help with the pain. As you feel knots during the massage apply pressure and slowly rub over the knot to dissolve it.
Before bed plan to massage your arm and wrist gently using a relaxing essential oil. Many companies sell soothing essential oils and some have even created them specifically for carpal tunnel like this Frankincense and Myrrh Carpal Tunnel Rubbing Oil. Using this oil or another pain relief cream in addition to massage can help provide night time relief.
Apply Cold/Heat To Reduce Swelling Before Sleep
Since carpal tunnel isn’t an injury you may not have thought to use cold or heat to reduce the pain. However, applying cold or heat can provide major relief and help you relax enough to fall asleep.
You need to speak with your healthcare provider and do some testing to find out whether heat or cold helps the most. Some people like to alternate cold and heat to reduce swelling to find pain relief.
You can use an inexpensive cold and hot therapy wrap on your pained wrist for about an hour before bed. This will help reduce the swelling and pain and allow you to drift off to sleep.
Relax With An Epsom Salt Soak First
Similar to the concept of using hot or cold therapy wraps before sleeping, taking an epsom salt bath will help relax you into sleep with less carpal tunnel pain. Epsom salt baths help your whole body relax because the magnesium in the bath is a natural muscle relaxer with anti-inflammatory properties.
Soaking in a epsom bath will not only help relieve the inflammation that makes carpal tunnel pain so bad but it will also help you fall asleep better due to magnesium being a natural sleep aid. People who are deficient in magnesium have trouble sleeping so taking a bath with epsom salt can help almost everyone fall asleep better.
We like using either Epsoak Epsom Salt or Dr Teal’s Pure Epsom Salt Soaking Solution in a warm bath before bed for the best and most relaxing results.
Elevate Your Wrist While Sleeping
Unfortunately most of us sleep in awkward positions that make carpal tunnel pain worse at night. If you end up in a bad position you could be jolted out of sleep halfway through the night with intense pain. That is why some sufferers chose to elevate their wrists above the body during sleep so there is reduced fluid and swelling on the median nerve that causes carpal tunnel pain.
Sleeping with a pillow to elevate your wrist can take some getting used to at first but the relief felt will encourage you. Ultimately the best sleeping position for carpal tunnel relief is the one that keeps the wrist neutral and elevated. You can do this many ways either with a special wedge pillow or just using your regular pillows to prop your arm up at night.
Wear A Carpal Tunnel Brace For Sleeping
For nighttime carpal tunnel relief, many people choose to use a brace while sleeping. This worked for me during pregnancy and I still occasionally wear my wrist brace to sleep at night if the carpal tunnel pain flairs up. Most people choose a more rigid wrist brace or wrist splint for sleeping since it aligns your wrist in a neutral position while sleeping to reduce irritation. Wearing a brace will prevent your hand from getting into a bad position that causes additional pain.
Below are some of the best wrist braces for sleeping with carpal tunnel. We’ve listed some of the best braces available through the trusted retailer Amazon. You can learn how to wear a carpal tunnel wrist brace to utilize these braces for pain relief.
Futuro Night Wrist Sleep Support, Adjustable
- Moderate, stabilizing relief and protection
- Couples light compression with support from cushioning beads and removable palmar stabilizer
- Adjustable straps provide customized fit and support
This sturdy wrist brace helps ensure a comfortable and restful night’s sleep despite carpal tunnel pain. Helps relieve night time hand and wrist pain due to carpal tunnel syndrome, post-cast and arthritis. Moisture-wicking, soft material keeps wrist comfortable overnight. Cushioning beads support ideal neutral hand position during rest. Futuro Night Wrist Sleep Support on Amazon
Mueller Sports Medicine Night Support Wrist Brace
- Maximizes circulation
- Super cushioned for comfort during sleep
- Unique 360 degree design provides rigid stability above and below the wrist
Helps relieve pain, tingling and numbness associated with carpal tunnel syndrome, arthritis, tendonitis, and repetitive motion stress or injury. Mueller Sports Medicine Night Support Wrist Brace on Amazon
ACE Night Wrist Sleep Support
- Cushioning beads support ideal neutral hand position during rest
- Adjustable palmar splint optimizes wrist support
- Easy sleeve slide-on design for effortless application
- Breathable, durable, soft and latex free materials
- One size adjustable
The ACE Brand Wrist Sleep Support provides comfortable support and protection during the night for those who suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome, or have injured, arthritic, weak, or post-cast wrists. ACE Night Wrist Sleep Support on Amazon
Custom Carpal Tunnel Wrist Braces
You can also get a custom wrist brace for your carpal tunnel from your health care professional. These custom wrist braces are fabricated from physical or occupational therapists and they will fit to your hand or wrist precisely.
A custom carpal tunnel wrist brace may be the best option for you especially if your health insurance may cover the cost of the splint or brace in your treatment. Check with your insurance company prior to fitting the brace to see how much you will have to pay for your wrist brace out of pocket. This may determine whether you want to proceed or not. You may also decide to purchase one of the best over the counter wrist braces available until your custom wrist brace is available.
The braces listed above should give you a good start in finding the right option for you. Once you’ve purchase a wrist brace take some time to get the fit right and learn how to wear it. You’ll be amazed at how much relief you’ll find and how great it can make you feel!