What causes Numbness?
posted: Jun. 01, 2012.
What causes Numbness and Tingling?
Most experienced when waking up from sleeping in an awkward position, or during the work day most commonly for individuals who perform a lot of overhead work such as plumbers or painters. Numbness is the sensation that occurs when a sensory nerve becomes compressed or irritated inhibiting its ability to relay information to and from the brain.
Classifying the levels of severity
There are different degrees of severity for trauma the nerve experiences which causes the feeling of numbness, as severity increases the numbness can be accompanied by loss of strength as well.
1. Neuropraxia, which is the most common cause, is simply a light compression on the nerve, causing a slight demyelination (disruption to the insulating sheath on the nerve) as well as no loss of transduction (ability for the nerve to communicate).
2. Axonotmesis, this is slightly more severe, with more damage to the sheaths surrounding the nerve, but all the structures are still intact, meaning transduction is likely still unaffected.
3. Lastly neurotmesis, the most severe which results in a complete sever of the nerve, resulting in loss of muscle function, decreased reflexes and no sensation. This severity often occurs with traumatic events such as car accidents. If you have numbness and tingling, but still have full muscle strength, no trauma associated and reflexes in tact there is a good chance that you are experiencing a slight compression resulting in paresthesia.
This feeling of numbness is known as "paresthesia" in the medical world, and can manifest with a variety of other symptoms. Some people feel that they have what they describe as a "pins and needles" feeling or a "falling asleep" sensation as well. Impingement can be caused by a variety of conditions, most commonly by a misalignment of a vertebrae, muscular entrapment of the nerve or disc injuries of the spine. A pinched nerve can cause numbness, but also can cause pain, burning, and itchiness. Other less common conditions associated with numbness can be spinal canal stenosis, tumors and cancer, stroke, diabetes, trauma, cardiovascular issues, etc. The most common areas of numbness are in the shoulders, arms, legs and feet. To treat numbness, the pressure on the nerve must be reduced, allowing full nerve transmission. A chiropractor is able to remove pressure from the irritated nerve by adjusting the vertebrae creating a more aligned spine or performing specialized muscle work.
Contact the doctors at Gallatin Valley Chiropractic if you are experiencing any numbness or tingling symptoms.
Call us: 406-551-2177
Schedule online at: https://appointments.mychirotouch.com/?clinic=GVCL0001