By Brittany Ferri December 13, 2020

Our hands are one of the most important aspects of our daily lives. We often take them for granted when everything is well and normal. That's why conditions such as Dupuytren's can be so frustrating and debilitating, especially when they progress to severely limit the function of your hands.

Surgeries are generally thought of as effectivebut there is recovery time afterward that includes therapy and a splint. For some people, this ends up being more of an inconvenience than they planned for. Recovery can even be more painful than the disease itself. There is also no guarantee that symptoms won't come back after someone has surgery. This is why doctors recommend observing signs and symptoms of the condition over time. One generally known fact is that natural approaches for Dupuytren's can be very effective and are also low risk.

Regular Stretching and Splinting

Some doctors may recommend stretching the affected fingers on a regular basis, with some sources suggesting that daily stretches are the most ideal. But results are not guaranteed and stretching may have no effect at all if someone has advanced symptoms.

You can also use a splint on the bent fingers by buying one at a drug store or consulting a therapist. All you really need is something to support the sides, but this may not be good if someone has severe symptoms. It's usually best to consult a skilled healthcare provider such as an occupational therapist or physical therapist.

Vitamin E

Not only does this wonder liquid have the capacity to reduce the symptoms associated with Dupuytren’s Contracture, but it also leaves your skin feeling silky, soft, and smooth. Vitamin E also works to relax the muscles, which can ease tension resulting from Dupuytren's.

There are no side effects associated with Vitamin E, but it may take up to a year of use before you see results. If nothing happens after prolonged use, it's best if you try another approach.

Magnesium

Orally taking magnesium supplements or applying magnesium oil to the skin is another great natural treatment for Dupuytren's. Most people say the effects can take up to six months to appear. Oral supplements and magnesium oil are both available over-the-counter (OTC) in local pharmacies, meaning you don't need a prescription for them. It's still important to check with your doctor or healthcare provider before taking this particular supplement, since it is known to sometimes interact with other medications or even health conditions. If you do take magnesium, you should only take small amounts because it does cause digestive side effects like diarrhea and stomachache.

DMSO

DMSO, or Dimethylsulfoxide, is a chemical solvent which is a byproduct of wood leftover from the production of paper. Many doctors have confidence in its analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and anti-oxidative properties. This means that DMSO can not only relieve pain but also lessen swelling and eliminate toxins.

Applying this three times a day for a month has been shown to give some people significant relief. While there is promise regarding the positive results of DMSO, more experimentation is necessary. Please check with your doctor first before trying DMSO.

Creams and Other Topical Products

Some companies have created creams containing ingredients that ease the symptoms associated with Dupuytren’s Contracture. They contain a plethora of supplements like arnica, sunflower oil, Vitamin E, and aloe. These are all well-known anti-inflammatory agents that offer a good combination of symptom relief.

By applying such creams three times daily, people often see noticeable results within a month. This depends on the severity of the disease and how quickly it has progressed. Even if this doesn’t work specifically to lessen the contracture, it doesn't have any side effects and will still do wonders for keeping your hands hydrated, soft, and less painful.

Combined Methods

Oftentimes, doing only one thing won’t show many results. You may have to try several of these options at the same time to produce tangible results. You may want to start by using a splint and consistently applying Vitamin E and magnesium. You may get the collagenase injection from your doctor followed by applying creams that specifically lessen Dupuytren's symptoms.

The most important takeaway is that it's always best to see a doctor or other healthcare professional about the various options in front of you. If your variation of the disease is severe and worsening quickly, surgery may be the only thing that brings you relief. But if it’s mild, you may not have to do much other than observe how your symptoms progress and try some of the natural approaches we mentioned above. One thing is certain: do not ignore symptoms of Dupuytren's because they will not go away on their own.

Brittany Ferri
Brittany Ferri

Brittany is a registered and licensed occupational therapist who has 6 years of clinical experience treating conditions such as Dupuytren's, arthritis, carpal tunnel, and more. She is passionate about educating others about their health.


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