Effects Of Pregnancy On The Wrists And Hands

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome can develop in some women when they are pregnant, especially in the later trimesters, due to hormonal changes. As the estrogen and progesterone balance shifts, the body retains more fluid. This fluid can put pressure on the Carpal Tunnel and may lead to increased pressure in the hands, wrists and/or thumbs. This fluid pressure can irritate or compress the nerves and tendons that run through this small area. Some symptoms that one may experience are tenderness, numbness in the hands, thumbs and/or wrists. There may be tingling in the fingers or wrist pain that may awaken you at night.

Things To Do To Reduce Symptoms:

  • Pay attention to ergonomics – adjust your work station to allow the wrists to be positioned in a relaxed, neutral posture (not bent) with forearms parallel to the floor
  • Avoid prolonged bending or twisting of wrists
  • Take frequent breaks from “repetitive” activities
  • Perform stretches to improve circulation
  • Avoid static positions, such as sitting or standing for long periods of time


Joint pain is common and usually involves the lower back, the pubic joint or the hip joints. Increased pain can occur when you are sitting or lying in one position for too long.


  • Crossing your legs
  • Uneven standing
  • Sitting Indian style
  • Repetitive stair climbing
  • Wide legged positions
  • Walking on uneven surfaces