Possible Causes of Tingling and Numbness

Tingling is a common sensation that can be felt in the hands, feet, legs, arms and at times different parts of the body at the same time. This is incredibly bothersome to people. Most tingling symptoms are temporary, but there are cases where it can be permanent. An example of temporary tingling is when the nerves are pressured under some weight for a long time, such as sitting on your feet or laying your head on your arm when you sleep. Tingling can feel like pins and needles. This is commonly painless, but irritating if it continues for long periods. However, there relief is quick once the pressure around the nerves are removed. Besides this common cause of tingling there are other possible causes. Let’s discuss them below.

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Staying in One Position for Long Periods of Time

Sitting or standing in one position for long periods of time can add pressure to the nerves resulting in tingling and numbness. You can easily prevent this by moving every few minutes or shaking your body loose.


One of the most common causes of tingling is diabetes. Diabetic neuropathy, numbness and tingling often first develops in the feet and go up the legs. This is then followed by the hands and arms. About one fourth of diabetic sufferers’ experience mild to severe nerve damage. Tingling is one of the first signs of diabetes.

Vitamin Deficiencies

Tingling and numbness are a common symptom in people that are vitamin deficient. Essentially Vitamin B1, B12, B6, E and Niacin deficient. These are the vitamins that are required to have a healthy nerve function. B12 deficiency can lead to pernicious anemia. This can then cause peripheral neuropathy. However, people that have too much B vitamins in their body will also experience tingling in the hands and feet. If you experience tingling, try to add some B vitamins to your diet.

Nerve Entrapment Syndromes

Another possible cause of tingling is nerve entrapment syndromes. This includes problems such as peroneal nerve palsy, carpal tunnel, radial nerve palsy, and ulnar nerve palsy. This type of problems will require professional opinions. If the problem is serious it may require surgery.

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Systemic Diseases

Tingling can be a symptom of numerous systemic diseases. This includes, liver disease, vascular damage, blood diseases, kidney disorders, hormonal imbalances, chronic inflammation, connective tissue disorders, cancers and amyloidosis. Benign tumors that affect the nerves can also cause tingling. Finding the cause of your tingling will require a lot of testing to fully determine.


People that have been exposed to toxins such as arsenic, mercury, thallium, lead and other industrial and environmental chemical will experience tingling in the hands and feet. Other possible causes are from medication, especially concentrated and strong drugs such as the ones used for chemotherapy. Antiviral and antibiotic can also cause tingling. If your medication is causing you this problem, consult your doctor for alternative medication you can take.


This isn’t mostly caused by the addiction, but the deficiencies and poor dietary habits that comes to alcoholism. People that suffer from alcoholism are more prone peripheral neuropathy. There are also studies that prove that alcoholism itself cause nerve damage called alcoholic neuropathy.


Sudden injuries or trauma can cause tingling in different parts of the body. Especially injuries that can crush, damage or compress the nerves. This type of injuries can cause nerve pain. Injuries in the neck, spine or any dislocated bone can cause tingling. If this occurs after an injury, it is important to seeking medical advice as soon as possible to avoid any serious repercussions.

If you start to experience these symptoms with tingling contact a medical professional immediately; weakness, numbness and inability to move, tingling after a neck, back and head injury, lost consciousness, lost control of bowels and bladder, slurred speech, change of vision, muscle spasms, pain in the fingers or forearm or any other unusual symptoms. If you do contact a medical professional, you may be required to do a physical examination to check your nervous system.  Before going to the doctor ask your family members about your medical history. This may also require a blood test to determine other causes of this symptom. It is ideal to find the ideal cause of your tingling as soon as possible so it can be controlled and reduce the chances of you suffering from lifelong consequences.

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