Diabetes to stroke; 7 reasons why you are waking up with numb fingers
One should not ignore numbness in fingers as they could indicate a number of illnesses from carpal tunnel syndrome, diabetic neuropathy, vitamin deficiency to even stroke.
Do you wake up in the middle of the night or in the morning with numbness in your fingers where you can't feel any sensation in them until you shake your hands? While this could be due to a bad sleep posture that cuts off blood circulation, numbness of fingers could also be a symptom of some health disorders that need to be investigated. It may happen that you have slept on your arm or your elbow is compressed because of which there could be a temporary lack of blood flow in your fingers. However, one should not ignore numbness in fingers as they could indicate a number of illnesses from carpal tunnel syndrome, diabetic neuropathy, vitamin deficiency to even stroke. (Also read: Raynaud's syndrome: Worrying signs in your fingers when it's cold outside)
Here are 8 reasons of having numb fingers in the middle of the night or upon sleeping.
1. Carpal tunnel syndrome
"Carpal tunnel syndrome occurs when the median nerve in the hand becomes compressed, generally due to inflammation from overuse. Symptoms may initially appear at night or upon waking up in the morning. Individuals may feel the need to 'shake out' their hands when they wake up. The discomfort may wake them repeatedly during the night," says Dr Ashish Gosar, Neurologist at Bhatia Hospital Mumbai," says Dr Ashish Gosar, Neurologist at Bhatia Hospital Mumbai.
"The median nerve provides sensation to the thumb, index, middle, and part of the ring fingers. Symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome include numbness, tingling, and pain in the hand and fingers. In severe cases, it can lead to weakness in the hand and wrist. Carpal tunnel syndrome is often caused by repetitive motions, such as typing or playing musical instruments, as well as by conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and pregnancy," says Dr. Shyam K Jaiswal, Senior Consultant – Neurology, CARE Hospitals Banjara Hills, Hyderabad.
2. Diabetic neuropathy
Approximately half of all people with diabetes have some form of nerve damage, including peripheral neuropathy and carpal tunnel syndrome, which can cause pain, numbness, and weakness in your hands, says Dr Gosar.
3. Sleeping position
"If you are waking up with numb fingers, it could be due to the way you are sleeping. If you sleep with your arms bent or on your hands, it can compress the blood vessels and nerves, leading to numbness and tingling in your fingers. This is usually a temporary condition that goes away after you move your arm or hand," says Dr Jaiswal.
4. Vitamin B12 Deficiency
Vitamin B-12 deficiency symptoms may include numbness and tingling in the feet, hands, muscle weakness, and decreased appetite, says Dr Gosar.
"A deficiency in certain vitamins, such as B1 (thiamine), B6 (pyridoxine), and B12 (cobalamin), can lead to peripheral neuropathy and numbness in the fingers. These vitamins are essential for the proper function of the nerves, and a deficiency can cause the nerves to become damaged and lead to symptoms such as numbness and tingling. Vitamin deficiencies can be caused by a variety of factors, including poor diet, alcohol abuse, and certain medical conditions," says Dr Jaiswal.
Hand numbness can be the only sign of a stroke, or it can occur with other symptoms. Although unlikely, it’s possible that hand numbness could be a sign of a stroke. A stroke is brain damage caused by decreased blood supply to a region of your brain, says Dr Gosar.
6. Raynaud's disease
Raynaud's disease is a condition that affects the blood flow to the fingers and toes. It is characterized by episodes of numbness and coldness in response to cold temperatures or stress.
"During an attack, the blood vessels in the fingers constrict, reducing blood flow and causing the fingers to become pale, cold, and numb. Raynaud's disease is more common in women and can be associated with other conditions such as scleroderma and lupus," says Dr Jaiswal.
7. Peripheral neuropathy
"Peripheral neuropathy is a condition that affects the nerves in the limbs, including the fingers and hands. It can cause a range of symptoms, including numbness, tingling, burning, and pain. Peripheral neuropathy can be caused by a variety of factors, including diabetes, nerve damage from injury or infection, exposure to certain toxins, and certain autoimmune diseases," says Dr Jaiswal.