Human Anatomy, Physiology, and Medicine. Anything human!
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I woke up this morning with numbness throughout my entire right arm. (I think it was the way that I slept, wth my shoulder bent against the side of the couch.) But the strange thing was that I could not feel nor move any part of that arm. I used my left arm to investigate it. I lifted the numb arm up and it felt like someone elses arm because I didn't feel I thing from the arm. And when I let that arm go, it just dropped on my belly. I couldn't do anything with it. This numbness in my right arm lasted for probably 15-20 seconds, but I suspect that it was that way for most of the night without me noticing.
Is this really bad for my arm?
Can someone explain what scientific reason for this type of numbness is?
Probably the way you sleep is one of the reason for numbness and what mith said Loss of blood flow is one of point. But if still persists and the period is more than >15-20seconds then it may be Paresthesia.
Because the exact reason is unknown it might be Transient Paresthesia.
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it happened with me many times , and yeah exaclty ... after about 15 to 20 seconds everything is running well
if we think of it , we will CONCLUDE that the reason of Loss of Blood flow
if it happens with you frequently and lasts for more than 30 seconds , you have to seek physician advice ..
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Technically, yes, the nervous system is affected, but only the peripheral nerves (in this case, the ones in your arm), not the brain , or brain stem, or spinal cord, etc. Here, when you sleep with your arm in that position, you put pressure on the blood vessels, stopping the blood flow to the nerves (as well as muscles, skin, etc). When the nerves don't get blood, they can't work. Numbness (or paresthesia, which is the more...scientific name) is caused when the nerves responsible for the feelings of pressure, touch, pain and temperature, and even the ones that control the arm muscles, can't do their job because of blood shortage (basically, they start dying), which leads to the numbness or tingling sensations.
It shouldn't mean anything serious, unless you feel it for hours, in which case it's not the acute or normal type, but the chronic type, which could mean something's causing your nervous system to fail.
”It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.”
It usually oocurs when you put your arm(s) in an extended armpit position, like under your pillow or as support for head/neck as you lay. It can also occur in the closed armpit position, say if you have a futon like me and sleep in the couch mode and an arm might rest at my side but under my body in the crease, but that results in a more tingly numbness and not the painful numbness of the extended position.
The extended position which I have found to be incredibly painful and can mess up your should joint(s) very easily if your sleep and position is prolonged.
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