Welcome to Our Community

Wanting to join the rest of our members? Feel free to sign up today. Already a member? Simply log in above.

Sign Up
  1. Deal of the Week

arms fall asleep at night.. nerve ?

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by intensityjunkie, Jun 30, 2008.

  1. intensityjunkie Cathlete

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 1999
    Messages:
    1,298
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ok so about the last 10 years my arms off and on fall asleep at night.. sometimes to the point that I can't feel them at all and have to move them around a while to get the tingly feeling then back to normal. Sometimes its one arm... sometimes both. I get it even when laying on my back with no pressure on my arms???
    Lately I have had it get even stranger though. Only a portion of my arm and fingers are asleep. Like my pinky and ring finger and that sliver down to my elbow will be asleep. This also can happen on both arms at once. Last night it was the opposite and my thumb to my middle finger section was asleep. My DH said its some kind of nerve problem and only suggested working out my arms more. I JUST worked out before this happened the last few nights. I don't see how that will help? Is this related to carpel tunnel? is it from typing too much or leaning my wrists on the computer desk? Someone even said it maybe from leaning on my elbows all the time? Either way I want to know WHY and also what I can do to help it. It was so bad a few nights ago that everytime I woke up at night one or both arms was doing it. But that said this goes in spurts. I can go months without it then it starts up again for a while. My DH doesn't seem too worried and he's a PA. ? anyone have a clue about this?? thanks!
     
    #1
  2. amyg Cathlete

    Joined:
    May 2, 2005
    Messages:
    5,998
    Likes Received:
    0
    Jess, I'm not sure what you're doing when asleep but I've had this and a couple of my bootcampers have as well. I got it when I was carrying heavy books in a bag and I let my shoulders fall forward; my bootcampers when they used heavier weights than they were used to and let their shoulders curve forward as well. I'm not sure what nerve it is, but I think it's a nerve in your shoulder and that if you focus on keeping your shoulders back and down you should be able to avoid pinching it. Hunch up your shoulers, roll them back, press your shoulder blades down your back as far as they can go.

    I expect rear flys might help as well to strengthen the back of your shoulders.

    That's my .02 without seeing your or knowing much! :) HTH
     
    #2
  3. 6Swans4me Cathlete

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2007
    Messages:
    1,473
    Likes Received:
    0
    I don't know. When my massage therapist massages my delts, she keeps saying how surprised she is that my arms and hands don't go numb more often due to how tight my delts are pressing on a nerve. Sorry, I don't remember the name of the nerve. When she massages my forearm, sometimes it's so tight, the numbness shoots right into my hand. Freaks me out! I've been trying to stretch my delts/pecs/shoulders/forearms, and notice less numbing at night. The numbness can get bad enough to wake me up in the middle of the night at times. I don't notice it during the day.

    Wendy
     
    #3
  4. EricaH Cathlete

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 1999
    Messages:
    1,280
    Likes Received:
    0
    #4
  5. intensityjunkie Cathlete

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 1999
    Messages:
    1,298
    Likes Received:
    0
    the cubital tunnel syndrome sounds alot like it. My DH said something about the nerve issue coming from my elbow. I didn't think about the shoulders etc. I'll look more into this.
    I've wondered about pinched nerves etc in my back also. I get frequent tension headaches in my neck etc. Thanks for the information everyone!
     
    #5
  6. SirenSongWoman Cathlete

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2007
    Messages:
    2,415
    Likes Received:
    0
    Please get this checked now. I had CARPAL tunnel and got surgery on both wrists (it was a snap). I told my orthopedic surgeon about a guy at work who never got his carpal tunnel fixed and told me his arms had been numb for ten years. My surgeon slapped his clipboard down on the counter and said "That's so STUPID! If you don't get the problem fixed it becomes permanent. Why do people do that?" Please, get this problem looked at NOW before it becomes completely debilitating and unfixable. Also, you really need to know exactly what the trouble is. I can tell you each of my carpal tunnel surgeries took 20 minutes, under local, and I was back at work in two weeks. I haven't had an issue since.
     
    #6
  7. Fitnessfreak366 Cathlete

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2004
    Messages:
    3,290
    Likes Received:
    0
    This same exact thing happens to me every night. Even when my arm is over me and I'm not even laying on it. It's very frustrating. Sometimes I'm afraid that when my feeling comes back that the fingers will be bent in a way they shouldn't be bent and then I'll start feeling pain. That hasn't happened, but that's how numb my hands get.

    I know my traps and upper body is always tight. This could be the problem.
     
    #7
  8. hiitdogs Cathlete

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 1999
    Messages:
    2,955
    Likes Received:
    0
    It's probably a nerve in your elbow. I get this when I work on the computer for extended periods of time. Especially since I have a tendancy to lean on my elbow while reading through stuff.

    Since your pinky and ringfinger are effected it is probably the ulnar nerve. http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=a00069

    My orthopedic doctor had has me do stretches and application of hot and cold compresses.
     
    #8
  9. catwoman88 Cathlete

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2008
    Messages:
    85
    Likes Received:
    0
    http://www.aspartamekills.com/mpvalley/

    Okay, so I'm posting this link just about everywhere right now. Numbness and tingling in the extremities is a common complaint regarding aspartame (artificial sweetener) consumption. If you drink a lot to diet drinks and/or eat a bunch of sugar-free foods, take a look at the symptom list on the link. Perhaps this could be the source of your problems?????
     
    #9
  10. SRP Cathlete

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2005
    Messages:
    4,662
    Likes Received:
    0
    My vote is for cubital tunnel syndrome. It's very common in this situation for your hands, especially the pinky and ring finger, to fall asleep at night if you sleep with your arms bent, such as when you lie on your back with your arms folded over your stomach.

    I have it, and it can develop into more than just your hands falling asleep. It can get pretty darned painful. The primary problem was at work, because of a bad desk setup. Make sure your arms are bent at a 90-degree angle or less when you type. You might need to get a drop-down keyboard tray. Also, make sure you sleep with your arms straight. It's tough to get used to, but for a long time, the only way I could sleep without my hands falling asleep was flat on my back with my arms straight at my sides.

    Try making changes like this, and be really aware of how your hands and arms feel during the day, not just at night. If that doesn't clear it up, there is surgery.
     
    #10
  11. pebblesus Cathlete

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2006
    Messages:
    412
    Likes Received:
    0
    Unfortunatly, many people these days do not have full health insurance.. or any HI at all.. hands down. That's why they do it (I don't think a lot of doctors get that).
    Some also do not get comfirmation from their doctors (you know the old story of the professionals not believing you're experiencing your own problem).
    Id go see a chiropractor for my twisted legs and feet, a podiatrist for my CMT and a Id love to get my painful wisdom teeth out.. but Im working on all that maybe in a couple more years :(
     
    #11
  12. autumn Cathlete

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 1999
    Messages:
    1,637
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have similar symptoms, and it is my ulnar nerves as described above. It is worse after certain workouts, driving, typing, any activity that keeps my arms bent at the elbow. I declined surgery and manage my symptoms..... for now. I do suggest you get a diagnosis though. :)
     
    #12
  13. intensityjunkie Cathlete

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 1999
    Messages:
    1,298
    Likes Received:
    0
    thanks again everyone! I do think it is the ulnar nerve now after reading the link posted and talking to DH who said yep thats it. I asked if it's going to cause any damage or permanent problems and he said it wouldn't though? eek. I sure hope not. I may get looked at for it.
    It isn't really "painful" though. I've had carpel tunnel syndrome before and that hurts! this is just numbness and tingling from my arms falling asleep. It seems to resolve on its own for a while then come back. I do tend to lean on my elbows. My elbows are also "over-extended"? as in they can bend kinda far. Not sure if that is a factor. It's more of an annoyance that reoccurs at times and some nights gets really bad.

    It's interesting that this happens to so many others. I feel a bit better that it's common and not some really weird thing that only happens to me! lol ;)

    Debbie -It does creep me out when I can't feel them also! Sometimes I wake up startled when I realize I can't feel my arm. eek. I get scared that I won't be able to move it or something.

    catwoman- yep I already avoid aspartame like the plague so that couldn't be it. thanks though!

    I'm going to try the advice given here. thanks :)
     
    #13
  14. cab0899 Cathlete

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 1999
    Messages:
    2,684
    Likes Received:
    0
    I haven't read all the posts so this info might be posted already. I'm an occupational therapist specializing in hand therapy. Cubital tunnel can cause serious damage although not nearly as often as carpal tunnel. It will eventually cause enough damage to "claw" the ring and little fingers. Cubital tunnel is often from keeping the elbows bent for too long. Look at your daily activities and make sure you're not doing elbow flexion for extended period of times. I often see truck drivers, hairdressors for example with cubital tunnel. You also need to make sure that you don't flex your elbow at night by using a commercial purchased elbow splint or fabricate one with a small toss pillow and a tensor bandage.

    To confirm a diagnosis of cubital tunnel, you do what is called the Wadsworth test, hold your elbow bent (maximally flexed) for 2 minutes if you start to experience numbness or tingling in your little or ring finger with 2 mins, it's a positive test for cubital tunnel. (important to make sure the wrist is straight so cubital tunnel and carpal tunnel aren't confused) This is also a good way to track if it's improving or not.

    Also going to add that this is repetitive, inflammatory condition and that you need to rest it not work it for healing occur!!!!! The cubital tunnel is inflammed and causing pressure on the ulnar nerve which runs through it. To leave pressure on the nerve will cause permanent damage. The positioning into more extension is to hold the tunnel open at maximum volume to allow the inflammation to come down. So you need to get the inflammation down this time and then figure why your cubital tunnel is being inflammed, it it activity related (flexed elbows/leaning on the elbows), horomonal related, etc. to ensure it doesn't occur again.
    Kim
     
    #14

Share This Page