Why Are My Hands Tingling & Numb?

Chiropractor in Davenport Numb HandsThe Main Reasons For Tingling & Numbness In The Hands

Davenport Chiropractors

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Do you ever wake up in the middle of the night and your hands are asleep? Have you ever been typing at the computer for a period of time and get some numbness in your fingertips? If you have, there are a few different possibilities for this to occur.

1. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

This is the conclusion that everybody automatically jumps to. It is not always the main reason for numbness in the hands. Carpal tunnel syndrome has a very specific cause and a very specific distribution of numbness in the fingers.

Carpal tunnel syndrome occurs when the median nerve is compressed as it passes through the carpal tunnel. The typical distribution of the numbness is on the palm side of the thumb, pointer finger, middle finger, and half of the ring finger. (See picture below)

Davenport Chiropractor Hand Problems

The most common cause of carpal tunnel syndrome is an overuse/repetitive motion injury. The forearm muscles get larger and the tendons of those muscles get larger as it goes through the carpal tunnel. This can cause increased friction and less space for the median nerve. This can cause decreased sensation of the nerve, leading to tingling and numbness in the hands.

2. Elbow & Shoulder Conditions

There are a lot of conditions that involve the shoulder and elbow that can contribute to tingling and numbness in the hands. If you have ever hit the inside of your elbow (funny bone) you know the distribution patter of the ulnar nerve.

  • Elbow Conditions
    • Golfer’s Elbow – Where the flexor forearm muscles become tight and cause excessive pulling on the inner portion of the elbow, causing compression of the ulnar nerve.
    • Ulna Subluxation(Bone out of place) – The Ulna bone goes back and slightly to the inside, causing compression of the ulnar nerve.
  • Shoulder Conditions
    • Anterior Humerus – Where your humerus (arm bone) is forward in the socket, which causes compression of the nerves and blood vessels that  go down into the arm. This could affect numerous nerve distributions.
    • Rotator Cuff Issues – Rotator Cuff issues tend to cause a lot of inflammation in the shoulder that can lead to swollen muscles that can cause compression of nerves and blood vessels.

3. Thoracic Outlet Syndrome

Thoracic outlet syndrome occurs when the blood vessels and/or nerves in the thoracic outlet become compressed. The thoracic outlet is the area between your clavicle (collar bone) and first rib. The veins, arteries, and nerves that go to your arm all pass through this area. If the space in this area becomes narrow, it can place pressure on the blood vessels and nerves, which can cause pain, numbness, and poor circulation in the arm and hand. Check out our article on Thoracic Outlet Syndrome.

4. Cervical (Neck) Conditions

There are many neck conditions that can cause tingling and numbness in the hands. They vary from bone conditions to muscular conditions.

  • Common Bone Conditions
    • Degenerative Disc Disease – One of the most common bone conditions that can lead to compression of the nerves that go down into the arm. This happens when your body puts down extra bone to stabilize your neck.
    • Subluxation (Bone out of place) – A bone that is not in the right position causes improper movement. It can cause improper movement at that level as well as at other levels. Improper movement can lead to muscle tightness and inflammation.
  • Common Soft Tissue Conditions
    • Disc Herniation – When a disc herniates it can impinge on the nerves as they exit the spinal cord. This often leads to neurological problems (tingling and numbness) in the nerve distribution.
    • Muscular Tightness – Muscles can impinge on the nerves themselves as well as cause inflammation leading to tingling and numbness in the hands.

5. Swelling Due To Pregnancy Or Heart Conditions

Not all tingling and numbness is due to a nerve condition. It can also be due to compression of blood vessels. Certain heart conditions can lead to swelling which can cause compression of both blood vessels and nerves. Pregnancy also leads to swelling at the end and can lead to tingling and numbness in the hands.

How Do I Fix It/Prevent It?

  1. Limit repetitive motion exercises such as typing. I know that this may not be possible due to job duties and such. In these cases I would recommend frequent stretching and some exercises that counter the effect of the repetitive motion.
  2. Chiropractic adjustments of course! Chiropractors have the unique ability to assess and correct any bony mis-alignments (subluxations). Some Chiropractors (like myself) also incorporate myofascial release and trigger point therapy to loosen tight musculature and reduce inflammation.
  3. Stay active and perform activities that allow a full range of motion of your joints. Stretching and yoga can also be beneficial in helping to stay loose and balanced.
  4. Unfortunately, some conditions may become bad enough that they require surgery. We hope to prevent it from getting that bad.

So, if you are looking for a Chiropractor in Davenport to help with tingling and numbness in your hands, please give us a call! Get Adjusted and Be Well!

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