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Finger Pain During Pregnancy

Finger Pain During Pregnancy

With the onset of pregnancy come many health-related problems due to the drastic changes in the body. One such condition that more than fifty percent pregnant women experience is finger pain. Though relatively harmless, this may be quite an annoying condition. The following article provides information regarding this condition.
Marlene Alphonse
Last Updated: Dec 21, 2017
One of the most beautiful periods in a woman's life is pregnancy. However, this phase may also be a cause for many pregnancy-related health conditions. When a woman is pregnant, her body undergoes several changes, and there is a spurt in the level of hormones. These changes in the body may lead to many problems, one such being finger pain during pregnancy. This pain is most likely to be caused by a condition known as carpal tunnel syndrome.

Carpal tunnel syndrome
Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by the compression of nerves in the hand which causes joint pain. It is related to the weight gained and swelling experienced by a woman during pregnancy. Some women may experience severe finger joint pain, which may last for several months even after the baby is born. However, in most cases, the symptoms are comparatively milder and temporary that disappear soon after the birth of the child. The severity of finger pain during pregnancy tends to increase at night. Sometimes, it may also affect the daily activities. The symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome include a feeling of pins and needles, tingling sensation, and a mild burning sensation around the thumb, index finger, middle finger, and half of the ring finger around the fingertip. Mild ache in the hands and the lower forearm, and a weakened grip, especially in the thumbs are some other symptoms. As the condition becomes worse, there may be a feeling of numbness in the palm and the joints of the fingers.

Why do Fingers Pain During Pregnancy?
The carpal tunnel is a connecting tube through which pass the nerves in the hands and fingers. When a woman is pregnant, this tube tends to swell due to the accumulation of fluid in the spaces between the tissues, which in turn compresses the nerves. As the pregnancy advances, some women may often experience a mild swelling in their wrists and hands. The swelling may also occur in the ankles and feet. This condition may becomes more prominent in the second and third trimesters, when the body experiences swelling during pregnancy. The pressure applied on the nerve by the swollen carpal tissue causes pain in the main nerve, and the other smaller nerves shift towards the thumb and fingers.

Remedies for Relieving Finger Pain
There are a few home remedies as well as clinical treatment options to provide relief from this condition.
  • If the pain occurs at night while sleeping, you may try and change your sleeping position while ensuring that the affected hand is not subjected to any form of pressure.
  • Avoid keeping your hands in the same position for a long time.
  • Use a pillow to keep your arms at an elevated position while sleeping at night.
  • Elevate your hands whenever you sit, like placing your hands along the back of the sofa may help reduce the pain.
  • Try flexing exercises, especially for the joints of the fingers and wrists until you feel the numbness reduce. However, you must be extremely careful while flexing your hands since it may even worsen the condition.
  • Avoid chores that require maximum hand movements as the symptoms may aggravate.
  • In severe cases, the doctor may advice you to undergo a surgery, where a minimal incision is made on the palm and the transverse carpal ligament is removed to reduce the swelling.
Consult your gynecologist or obstetrician if the finger pain and numbness persists. It is not advisable to take any painkillers without the prescription of your doctor.

Disclaimer: This HerHaleness article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.