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Toward the end of the second trimester, JK started to manifest new symptoms. First came the swollen knuckles the somewhat-arthritic feeling in the fingers. Forget wearing rings at that point Wannabe Moms. If you can get one on, you'll never get it off!
Then came the kind of pain in the hand, wrist, and forearm that limits you in every way. Holding a pen hurts. Typing hurts. Hell, gripping a friggin knife and fork stings like you would not imagine!
Icing was not very effective. And massage didn't make much of a difference either. JK did not want to take pain relievers - after all she was pregnant - and Tylenol is not such a great anti-inflammatory.
Sleeping is the worst. Every time you shift in your sleep, the pain from the Carpal Tunnel is enough to wake you up. Simply finding a comfortable sleep position is a task in itself.
I figure that the moment that the Carpal Tunnel began to cut into JK's sleep was the time to look at other effective remedies. We had a gel splint recommended to us.
The gel splint is effective for a number of reasons:
- It immobilizes the wrist and supports it.
- The gel conforms to the area and gently massages it.
- The splint limits the amount of fluid that can collect in the area.
- (optionally) It can be applied cold if you wish, to bring further relief.
For the first time in a while, JK was able to sleep. Better still the splints, used regularly, began to reverse the symptoms, to the point where JK could sleep without them after a couple of weeks.
But if you believed that this pregnancy had nothing else in store for JK and I, you will soon learn differently. The biggest hits were still to come.