Hand Exercises to Try After Carpal Tunnel Surgery

Hand Therapy

Recovering from carpal tunnel release surgery can be a long road. It can take months to relieve the stiffness in your hand and regain full function in your fingers. Thankfully, there are plenty of exercises you can do to minimize swelling and reduce pain for a smooth and expedient recovery. While these exercises will not cure you completely, they can help you strengthen your recovering hand and ease the restrictions you feel after your carpal tunnel surgery.

Best Exercises for Recovering From Carpal Tunnel Surgery

It’s important to start exercising your hand as soon as possible after surgery, generally your first day post-operation. Check out these basic exercises for your hand and wrist that will help you regain mobility and strength. When you first start these exercises, you should expect to feel some discomfort, though they should never be outright painful.

Tendon Gliding

Tendon gliding helps you regain your range of motion in your hands and fingers. Start by holding your hand up straight with your fingers upright and touching one another. Then, you’ll begin bending all your fingers aside from your thumb:

  • First, bend them at your bottom knuckles at a 90-degree angle while keeping the rest of your fingers straight and together.
  • Next, bend your second knuckles while keeping the rest of your finger straight.
  • Finally, bend your fingers at the top knuckles to form a first.
  • Straighten your bottom knuckles, then open your hand until it’s back in its original position.

Repeat this set of motions five to 10 times, depending on your pain levels.

Wrist Bends

Wrist bends will help increase flexibility and break up scar tissue. Extend your arm outwards with your wrist flexed at a 90-degree angle. Use your other hand to lightly pull your wrist back by your fingers and hold the position for 10-30 seconds. Repeat this stretch up to five times.

Thumb-Finger Touches

Thumb-finger touches improve your coordination in everyday tasks like picking up small objects and sorting. Simply hold your open hand up and touch each fingertip to your thumb, starting at the index finger and working through to the pinky before going back again. Complete this process three to five times in each direction.

Contact OrthoBethesda Today

If you’re struggling with carpal tunnel syndrome or looking to get back to normal after carpal tunnel surgery, the physicians at OrthoBethesda want to help. All of our surgeons are board certified and dedicated to providing you with superior care. Submit a contact form online or call us at 301-503-1010 to learn more about our services or book an appointment today.