June 24, 2021 1 min read 0 Comments

How do I know I have carpal tunnel syndrome?

Carpal tunnel syndrome is quite common among hairstylists. The usual complaint is tingling, numbness or burning sensations in the thumb and fingers. There are three tests doctors often use which can be used as a self-test.  

The Tinels Test. In this test the doctor will tap the area on the inside of the wrist at the base of the thumb. If the fingers jump or there is pain or numbness from the tapping, this could be a sign of CTS.

Tinel's Test for carpal tunnel syndrome

Phalen’s Test.Placing the back of the hands together with palms facing out and fingers pointing to the ground for one minute causes numbness in the hands in most people. This will cause pinching of the median nerve in the carpal tunnel. However, people with CTS will almost immediately feel pain and numbness from this positioning of the hands.

Phalen's Test for carpal tunnel syndrome

Pinch Grab Test.  Place a piece of paper between the index finger and the thumb. Pull it out to determine the grip pressure of the hand. If the paper can be easily pulled out from the thumb and index finger, this can be an indicator of CTS.

pinch and grab test for carpal tunnel syndrome
Written by Bonnie Megowan. Bonnie is a shear sharpener trainer and teaches sharpening through her Youtube channel and in person. Her company Bonika Shears produces the Bonika Shear line of shears. She is available for consultation about shears and sharpening.