What Causes Pins and Needles?
Article by John Miller
Pins and Needles - Paraesthesia
The most common cause of "pins and needles" is a moderately pinched nerve. Pins and needles is referred to as "paraesthesia" in the medical community.
Did you know that feeling "pins and needles" can actually be a worse sign than having pain in your arm or leg. This is because the nerve is squashed so much that you can't even feel pain anymore.
Even worse than "pins and needles" is "numbness" or "anaesthesia", which is a total lack of sensation. You will experience anaesthesia when there is severe nerve compression.
Anaesthesia or numbness that persists for more than a few hours can be sign of permanent nerve compression. We urge you to seek prompt medical attention to prevent the nerve from permanent damage and the muscles it innervates to drastically weaken.
The good news is that the majority of pinched nerves and nerve compressions are only transient and can be quickly reversed with early treatment. However, neglect can lead to permanent nerve compression injuries, which may never recover.
Common Causes of Pinched Nerves
The most common forms of nerve compression are in the spinal joints where either a disc bulge or a bony arthritic spur can irritate and compress the nerve. Compressions can also occur as the nerve passes through or around muscles. Your physiotherapist will know where to look. Some common pinched nerve conditions include:
How Can You Fix "Pins and Needles"?
If you know of someone who is experiencing chronic or permanent "pins and needles", "numbness" or "muscle weakness", please encourage them to seek urgent professional advice.
The secret to quick success is the correct diagnosis. A highly trained health practitioner such as your physiotherapist or doctor is your best port of call.
FAQs about Pins and Needles
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