Can a Chiropractor Help with Trigger Finger Issues?

little finger is locked at this position. can a chiropractor help it to get straight again

Trigger fingers can be a real snag in your daily routine, making simple tasks like snapping your fingers to a beat or reaching into your pocket feel like a hurdle.

That stubborn stiffness or locking turns your once nimble digits into a source of frustration.

If you’re grappling with this inconvenience, you might wonder, Can a Chiropractor Help with Trigger Finger?

“Yes.” Chiropractic care is not just for back pains or spinal adjustments; it extends to resolving issues with other joints and soft tissues, including the fingers.

In this blog post, we’ll unravel the ways a chiropractor might offer a helping hand to get your fingers back in smooth motion without all the medical jargon to tie you up in knots.

So, let’s understand how chiropractic care could be the key to unlocking your trigger finger woes.

What is Trigger Finger?

Trigger finger is when your finger gets stuck in a bent position, like pulling a trigger. It’s also called stenosing tenosynovitis.

Then, when you try to straighten it, it snaps back up like a rubber band. It happens because a tiny part in your finger called a tendon gets swollen or bumps start forming. 

Your fingers have tendons like long ropes connecting your muscles to your bones. Normally, tendons slide through a snug tunnel called a sheath to help your fingers move.

But when the tendon gets thick, or the sheath narrows, moving your finger feels tough and can get stuck. It’s not comfortable and can make everyday stuff harder to do.

What Triggers Your Finger?

A lot of different things can make your fingers get all trigger-happy.

Here are some common reasons:

  • Doing the same thing repeatedly: If you’re always gripping stuff or doing tasks that use the same finger moves, it can irritate your tendons.
  • Pushing too hard: When you work your fingers too hard or suddenly start a new activity they’re not used to, it can cause trouble.
  • Health issues: Some sicknesses, like diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis, make it more likely for your fingers to act up.
  • As you age, you might face this issue more often. It’s just one of those things that can happen as the years add up.
  • Common in women.

Symptoms

You’ll notice a few telltale signs if the trigger finger creeps up on you.

Look out for:

  • Morning stiffness: Waking up with a finger stuck in the trigger position is a common symptom.
  • Popping or clicking sensation: When you move your finger, it might feel like it’s snapping into place.
  • Tenderness or a bump: The base of your finger may be sensitive to the touch, or you might even feel a nodule.
  • Finger catching or locking: You might find it hard to straighten your finger once it’s bent, or it could lock entirely in one position.
  • Painful movement: Stretching your finger could come with a spasm or sharp pain.
  • Grasping difficulties: You might struggle to hold onto things, with your grip not as strong or sure as it used to be.

Phases of Trigger Finger and Trigger Thumb

Trigger finger and thumb problems typically start mild and worsen if not taken care of.

Here’s how they usually go:

Stage 1 – Early Irritation: Your finger starts to feel sore and stiff, especially in the morning. It’s the early sign that something is not right.

Stage 2 – Catching: Your finger doesn’t move as smoothly and begins to catch or click when you bend and straighten it.

Stage 3 – Locking: When your finger starts to give you trouble. It can get stuck in a bent position, and you must use your other hand to straighten it.

Stage 4 – Rigidity: If you don’t take care of it, your finger might not straighten. It could stay bent and no longer snap back to normal.

How Can a Chiropractor Help with a Trigger Finger?

If your finger suddenly hurts and is hard to straighten, you’ve likely experienced a trigger finger. It’s a frustrating condition that can affect anyone, whether you work in an office or play sports. 

Doctors call it stenosing tenosynovitis. While traditional treatments focus on splints or surgery, chiropractors can also help.

Chiropractors offer different ways to relieve the pain and stiffness of trigger fingers without surgery. They can even help stop it from coming back. 

This guide will explore how chiropractors can help manage this common hand problem.

Techniques Used by Chiropractors

Trigger finger is usually caused by inflammation, which affects the movement of tendons in the hand, typically the tendons in your thumb and fingers.

Chiropractors have several techniques to address this issue without resorting to more invasive measures. 

Joint Manipulation

Chiropractic joint manipulation is a technique that chiropractors use to restore movement and reduce pain. For the trigger finger, the manipulation focuses on the hand and wrist joints, which can become stiff and inflamed due to the condition. 

By applying controlled force to a joint, the chiropractor can help restore its proper function.

Soft Tissue Therapy

Soft tissue therapy is a hands-on approach that targets muscles, tendons, and ligaments. Chiropractors may use massage techniques to help release tension and reduce inflammation in the affected area. 

This can improve circulation and promote healing of the irritated tendons.

Exercises

Chiropractors may also recommend specific exercises to help stretch and strengthen the muscles and tendons in the hand and fingers. These exercises can aid recovery and prevent further issues with the trigger finger.

Splints

Immobilizing the affected finger in a straightened position, reducing inflammation and allowing the tendon to rest and heal. It provides support and stability, promoting proper finger movement while minimizing discomfort associated with triggering or locking of the finger.

Tips for Preventing Trigger Finger

If you want an early safety measure to prevent trigger finger, then you have to follow strictly the following instructions of a chiropractor: 

  • Taking regular breaks if you perform repetitive hand movements
  • Using proper ergonomic techniques in your daily activities
  •  Maintaining a healthy weight to reduce strain on your hands and fingers

Lifestyle Changes

  • Dietary changes to reduce inflammation in the body
  • Suggestions for improving your sleep quality, which is essential for healing
  • Recommendations regarding the use of your hand and fingers during everyday activities

Home Exercises For Trigger Finger

When dealing with trigger fingers, there are some simple exercises you can try at home to help your fingers feel better:

  1. Finger Lifts: Perform Finger Lifts by laying your hand flat on a table and gently lifting each finger off the table one by one, holding each up for a few seconds. Then, slowly lower each finger back down. Repeat this action for each finger.
  2. Palm Press: Press your fingers flat against the surface of a table, then press your palm down firmly while keeping your fingers straight. Grasp for a few seconds, then let go.
  3. Finger Bends: Start with your hand open and your fingers straight. Bend the tip of your finger to touch the base of your finger joint. Do each finger a few times.
  4. Thumb Touch: Touch your thumb to the tip of each finger, one at a time, making a gentle O shape. Do this several times to work out the stiffness.
  5. Towel Grab: Place a small towel flat on the table. Try to crumple the towel into a ball using only your fingertips, then straighten it out again.

What to Expect from Your Chiropractic Visits?

You might wonder what will happen if you’re considering seeing a chiropractor for your trigger finger. Don’t worry, it’s simple and can help a lot.

We’ll inform you of what you can expect during your visit.

A Warm Welcome

When you step into a chiropractor’s office for the first time to tackle your trigger finger, expect a friendly greeting! You should fill out some forms about your health and describe what’s been going on with your finger.

Getting the Full Picture

Your chiropractor will chat with you to understand what you’re dealing with. They might ask you to perform simple movements to see exactly how your finger or thumb is acting up.

The Adjustment Plan

Your chiropractor will explain how they can help based on what they learn. They may use special techniques to adjust your hand and fingers to reduce stiffness and improve movement.

Regular Visits

Healing takes time and usually more than one visit. So, your chiropractor will likely suggest a schedule of regular appointments to get your finger feeling normal again.

How Long Does Chiropractic Treatment Take to Recover?

Chiropractic treatment time can change from person to person. If your trigger finger is new, you might get better quickly in just a few weeks.

But if you’ve had pain for a longer time, it could take a few months. Going to all your chiropractor appointments and exercising at home will help you heal faster.

Remember, getting better takes patience and sticking to your treatment plan.

Benefits of Chiropractor for Trigger Finger

  1. Less Pain: Going to a chiropractor can reduce the soreness and hurt in your finger.
  2. More Movement: They can help your finger move better, so it’s not stuck or stiff.
  3. Avoiding Surgery: Regular treatment and exercises can fix your finger without an operation.

Case Study

Patient Profile

Mary Smith, a 56-year-old secretary, has been struggling with typing due to severe stiffness and pain in her left index finger.

Presenting Complaints

Upon consulting Dr. John, Mary reported a six-month history of finger stiffness that progressively worsened, culminating in pain and difficulty straightening the finger after flexing it. Dr. John noted swelling at the base of Mary’s finger, corroborating her suspected condition.

Treatment and Progression

Dr. John devised an individualized treatment plan that includes gentle chiropractic manipulations to improve finger joint mobility and specific soft tissue techniques to alleviate tendon trapping. He also prescribed at-home exercises to strengthen Mary’s finger muscles and reduce stiffness. 

After eight sessions spanning over two months, Mary exhibited significant progress, with marked reductions in pain and improved finger movement, allowing her to perform her secretarial duties with minimal discomfort.

FAQs

1. What if exercises don’t fix my trigger finger?

If exercise isn’t enough, see a doctor. They can tell you about other treatments like medicine or special splints.

2. Can kids get trigger fingers too?

Yes, kids can get it, just like grown-ups. But it’s not super common. If you think your kid has it, take them to a doctor.

3. Does an injury cause a trigger finger?

It can be, but it’s usually from doing the same thing often, which makes the tendons in your finger mad.

4. Do I have to stop using my hand if I have a trigger finger?

You don’t have to stop completely, but it’s good to rest your hand. Also, try not to do things that make it hurt more.

5. Will the trigger finger go away by itself?

Sometimes it does, but not always. You should see a doctor if it’s bothering you or not going away.

6. Can anything else help my trigger finger?

Besides exercises and a chiropractor, a doctor might suggest a shot to help the pain or a splint to keep your finger still.

Conclusion

If you’ve been experiencing that stubborn lock and pain in your finger, don’t let it tie you down. Can a chiropractor help with the trigger finger?

Absolutely! Chiropractic care could be your ticket to reclaiming comfortable, pain-free movement in your hands.

Say goodbye to the frustration of a stuck finger and hello to all the little things you love doing with ease.

Ready to give your hands the help they need? Then, book an appointment with a chiropractor as early as possible.

Special thanks to Dr.John for allowing us to share his case study.

And hey, if you ever want to dig into more stuff like this, swing by and check out our other blogs at chiropric.

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