Do you occasionally feel a slight numbness in your fingers or hands? It might be uncomfortable or concerning to have that “asleep” sensation in those nerves, especially if you are unable to get rid of the feeling. Luckily for you, numb fingers are very common and doctors around the world have come up with plenty of methods to treat them. Today we’re going to outline some of the causes of numb fingers or hands and what you can do both to treat and prevent them.
What Causes Numb Fingers?
Conditions that affect the nerves or blood vessels in your hands are the culprits behind numbness of fingers. You might feel a tingling, which is called “paresthesia of the fingers”. This is often a result of one of these top factors:
- Peripheral neuropathy – damage to the nerves of extremities
- Longstanding or uncontrolled diabetes (can lead to peripheral neuropathy)
- Alcohol abuse (also associated with peripheral neuropathy
- Or a number of other conditions including stroke, multiple sclerosis, Raynaud’s disease, and vascular diseases.
The actual numbness is usually a result of damage, irritation, or compression of one nerve or a branch of nerves in your arm and wrist.
Rarely, the numbness you feel in your fingers and hands could be a result of problems with your brain or spinal cord, often accompanied by weakness or loss of function in your hand or even arm. However, numbness of the fingers alone is usually not associated with a potential life-threatening disorder, like a stroke or a tumor.
What Should You Do?
A variety of tests can be performed to establish an appropriate course of action to deal with your numb fingers or hands. You will need to see a doctor who can evaluate the detailed information about your situation and determine the cause of your hand numbness. If numbness persists or continues to spread to other parts of your hand or body, schedule another evaluation with your doctor.
Call 911 or get emergency medical help if your numbness begins suddenly, is accompanied by weakness or paralysis, confusion, difficulty talking, or a sudden and severe headache.
Some of the tests your doctor might order to treat or diagnose your numbness include:
- A nerve conduction velocity test
- Imaging studies
- A nerve biopsy
The treatment plan will depend on the cause of the numbness to your fingers and the goals your doctor has to relieve you of the symptoms. At Spring Creek Medical in Logan, Utah, we’re eager to help you relieve the numbness in your fingers or hands. Schedule your appointment today!