Body Numbness

Body Numbness is characterised by lack of sensation in the extremities of the body namely the fingers, toes, hands, feet, palms and forearms. Prolonged standing or sitting is found to be a major cause of body numbness and therefore should be avoided.

Causes of Body Numbness

The most common cause of body numbness is sitting or standing in the same position for a long time. The circulation of blood is impaired and the body part goes numb. Sensation is restored once blood starts flowing to those parts of the body. Take a walk in between to restore blood circulation.

  1. Any injury to a nerve or pressure on a nerve will cause numbness and a tingling sensation in the area.
  2. Pressure on the spinal cord due to a spine injury or a herniated vertebra causes the lower part of the body to go numb
  3. Medical conditions like diabetes, under active thyroid, carpal tunnel syndrome, herpes, migraine or brain seizures affect the nervous system and cause body numbness
  4. Chemical imbalances in the body like low levels on Vitamin B12 or high levels of sodium and potassium cause body numbness.
  5. Chemical toxins introduced in the body from to animal or insect bites or sea food allergies can cause the body to go into shock and go numb.
  6. Herpes zoster or shingles infection can also bring about numbness symptoms.
  7. Fluctuation of sugar levels in diabetic patients may also cause body numbness.

Body numbness is a sign of a serious underlying problem and should not be ignored. The root cause of numbness is identified and treated.

  1. It is essential not to sit or stand in the same position for a long time. This is especially applicable to people who work on the computer for extended periods of time.
  2. Regulation of sugar, thyroid, potassium and sodium levels through diet and medication is prescribed if numbness is symptomatic of chemical imbalances.
  3. Spinal cord injuries required specialised medical care and extensive physiotherapy.
  4. Carpal tunnel syndrome and spondylitis require medical diagnosis and treatment.
  5. Often tingling or numbness in the extremities without obvious physical cause is a symptom of narrowing of cranial arteries and impaired blood circulation to the brain. This, if accompanied with momentary loss of consciousness and slurred speech are symptoms of a stroke and should be referred to a medical practitioner immediately.

Blood tests

Body numbness may require extensive blood tests to check blood count, Electrolyte and vitamin levels, Thyroid function tests and toxicology screening. Other imaging tests like Angiogram, CT or MRI scans of the spine and brain, lumbar puncture, Ultrasound of blood vessels and X rays may be prescribed by the doctor for an accurate diagnosis.

Prevention

Regular exercise helps in maintaining proper blood circulation in the body and prevents numbness. Smoking should be stopped as it hampers blood circulation and affects the nerves.



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