Wrist Splint for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Skip to the navigation

Topic Overview

A wrist splint is a brace that looks like a fingerless glove. It stabilizes your wrist in a straight and sometimes slightly bent-back position. Wearing a wrist splint minimizes pressure on the median nerve and allows you a period of "relative rest" from movements that make carpal tunnel syndrome worse.

Think about these guidelines when you use a wrist splint:

  • When worn to stabilize the wrist during sleep, a wrist splint can reduce pain and pressure on the median nerve.
  • A wrist splint isn't a substitute for good workplace design and proper body mechanics. Some experts advise against wearing a wrist splint while working, because doing so can strain the hand's tendons.
  • A wrist splint is a helpful short-term treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome. But long-term use can cause your muscles to weaken. During and after a period of splint use, exercise and slowly increase your hand and wrist movements. This will help prevent your wrist muscles from weakening.

Splints are available in drugstores without a prescription. They are also available by prescription from orthopedic and medical supply stores. Physical and occupational therapists can make custom-fit splints from lightweight materials that may be more comfortable to wear.

Health Tools Health Tools help you make wise health decisions or take action to improve your health.

Health Tools help you make wise health decisions or take action to improve your health.

Decision Points focus on key medical care decisions that are important to many health problems.
Actionsets are designed to help people take an active role in managing a health condition.

Credits

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerKathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerHerbert von Schroeder, MD, MSc, FRCSC - Hand and Microvascular Surgery

Current as ofNovember 14, 2014