28 answers

Numbness - Rochester,MN

About two weeks ago, I noticed a numbness in my right hand. It was right when I woke up in the morning, so I thought I'd just slept on it wrong (which is odd, since I sleep on my left side). It has continued now for two weeks, and is radiating up my arm, though only along my ulna (small bone leading from the elbow to the pinky side of the hand). I'm beginning to notice it in my left forearm as well, also along the ulna.

I called my doctor, and she said it's carpal tunnel (sp?) related to pregnancy, but I'm having no pain what-so-ever, just numbness. I have full motor function of both wrists, my arms just feel a bit weak, along with the constant numbness in my right hand. We've ruled out blood clots. There's no discoloration, and she says it will go away after I deliver.

Have any other mom's experienced this? Do you think I should get a second opinion? Two weeks with numbness, and especially with it spreading, has me a little worried. Any advice would be great. Thanks all.

~J.

**Update** I had scoliosis all through high school, and went to a chiropracter twice a week. I also had a car accident where I tore my right shoulder muscle two years ago. I think it may be just a pinched nerve, but I was told it's not safe to go to a chiropracter while pregnant because of the pressure placed on the body when lying on your stomach. I'm in the Rochester area, if anyone knows a chiropracter who specializes in pregnancy, it would be MUCH appreciated! Thank you all for your support! :)

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I also had the same thing when I was pregnant with my twins. I woke up every morning with numbness, but everytually it went away once I got up and moving around. But I remember that my hands, arms, never really felt "normal". If I remember correctly I finally went to the dr after I had delivered because it had continued for a bit. He ruled out Carpel Tunnel but never really gave me an explanation of what it could be. It eventually went away, probably after about 2 months.

Along with everyone else I have experienced the same thing and was told it was Carpel Tunnel. I recommend getting some wrist braces to wear. I always wore mine just at night while I was sleeping and it seemed to help after about a week. Good luck!

I am a doula (labor and delivery coach) from Beaver Dam. I might get a second opinion. It is possible that the numbness is from baby pressing on nerves, but if you are concerned and it isn't passing, I would recommend my clients get a second opinion. Maybe it is just that, but how you feel about it is also important. Going to a chiropracter is most likely fine. Some docs just straight up don't like chiros for any of their patients. They have special tables for pregnant women where there is a hole for the belly.

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I had this during my first pregnancy. It's caused by swelling from pregnancy. The carpal tunnel is where the nerves run down into your hand. It is small so pressure on the nerves can happen easily, causing numbness. During pregnancy we retain more fluids, gain weight etc. making this more likely happen. There are stretches and excercises you can do to help move things around a bit, this can really help. If your doctor doesn't know of any maybe you should go see a chiropractor or another practitioner. Maybe a physical therapist would be able to help.

If you are worried, it is always prudent to get a second opinion. There are other more serious things that can cause numbness.

The good news is that if it is Carpal Tunnel Syndrom it is likely to go away after the baby comes. I did not gain as much weight with my second pregnancy and had no real problems with my hands and wrists. It wasn't something I tried to do, it was just a different pregnancy.

I had numbness in my first finger and the finger next to it when I was pregnant. It happened the last month or two of the pregnancy and I think it was due to high blood pressure. I didn't notice it spreading so that's odd. It went away a few weeks after delivery though. I would get a second opinion just to make sure it isn't something else.

I also experienced this while pregnant, but turned out not pregnancy related. It was a neck injury from a car accident. It doesn't take much for a neck to go out though. Maybe try a chiropractor and get an adjustment, it might make the numbness go away, if not an adjustment always helps!!
I also have been told I have carpultunnel (also not sure on the spelling!) and that is definately painful!
N.

Hi J.,

I am a chiropractor myself and I would definitely recommend you see one. I don't know anyone in Rochester, but most chiros do work on pregnant women. There is no pressure put on the stomach if they have a table that has a part under the stomach that drops down. Many tables have this feature for pregnant women or those with large stomachs. It actually feels great to be able to lay face down! Chiropractors have good success with carpal tunnel or any nerve irritations. It actually may be coming from your neck as well.

Good Luck!

L.

Have you ever seena chiropractor? This sounds verry much like pinched nerves dueto the babys position and strain on your body. Med doctors wont tell you to g oto a ochiropractor, but I will! i had pinched nerves, along w/ other pregnancy issues, and WHAT a DIFFERENCE. There are chiropractors that even specialize in prenancy. I ccan recommend a cple, if ya let me know yourhometown. S.

Hi J.,
If it is pregnancy induced carpal tunnel caused by edema then massage can help. It will push the excess fluids back into the body and it will be flushed from the body through the lymphatic system. It won't fix the problem - only birth will but it will give you relief.
A second opinion from another doc would be good to be sure that's what it is.
C.

I too had terrible carpal tunnel during pregnancy, but I had for the entire 2nd and 3rd trimester. It got progressively worse as I approached my due date. (I retained a ton of fluid and gained a lot of weight during the pregnancy which didn't help the carpal tunnel) Yoga is helpful but in all honesty, I am a yoga teacher and taught until my 9th month and it did little to alleviate the pain and numbness. The nice thing is that it went away within a couple of weeks of having the baby.
You can get wrist/forearm braces at Walgreens that might help, especially at night.
Good luck and hang in there. Hopefully it won't get too bad, but if it does it will likely go away soon.

I did not have this condition, but it sounds like your baby might be putting pressure on a nerve causing the numbness. I would definately get it checked out by someone else. A chiropractor could be helpful for something like this. If you're interested, I can suggest some people.

P.

this is a very common occurrance during pregnancy, don't really understand why but it does seem to go away after delivery. Try not to worry, but yes, use wrist braces, they help alot. Good luck.

Have you been in to see a chiropracter? I had this same problem with numbness starting in my back, then moving down my arms and legss eventually into spots in my legs and feet which also really freaked me out. (I am 25 and healthy!) I went to see a chiropractor and he said sometimes a nerve gets pinched or if somethings is a little off that it is not uncomon to experience numbness. He adjusted me and no more numbness! Good Luck!
K.

Along with everyone else I have experienced the same thing and was told it was Carpel Tunnel. I recommend getting some wrist braces to wear. I always wore mine just at night while I was sleeping and it seemed to help after about a week. Good luck!

Yes that did happen to me when i was carrying my son not that bad it was only in my hand but after i had him it went away. so don't worry.

Hi J.,

I have not experienced this personally but my cousin did. Not to alarm you but she ended up having MS which can be accelerated by pregnancy because it's physically hard on the body. My cousin thought it was nothing at first too until after the baby was born and she ended up dropping the baby because she couldn't feel her arms. I'm not saying that you have MS but checking into it my not be a bad idea, especially if it happens to be in your family history. Besides, finding whatever it is early is all the better. I hope this helps and GOOD LUCK.

Hi J.,
I had the exact same problem when I was pregnant, except that my doctor did not diagnose me with anything. Soon after my daughter was born, I began having pain and stiffness in my fingers and wrists, and then in my heels and ankles. I was diagnosed with Rhuematoid arthritis which my doctor says can sometimes be triggered by the hormones during pregnancy. The doctor also said that in retrospect, the numbness I experienced could have been a precursor, so maybe ask you doctor if you should be tested for RH. (That's the bad news).
The good news is that I have heard from my friends that many of them have experienced numbness during pregnancy and that it was the result of having 50 percent more blood which then passes more slowly through your veins.
Hope this helps,
M.

Hi J. -

I had the exact same thing (and I too just thought my hand was asleep). It started for me at about the beginning of the 8th month of pregnancy and didn't go away until about 14-15 weeks after I had my son. I ended up having steroid injections in my wrists after I gave birth because the numbness was so bad I could hardly function with my new baby. The injections hurt terribly for about 24 hours . . .but was definitely worth it! Best of luck to you . . .I know how frustrating that can be!!

I would suggest going to a chiropractor, a lot of times numbness can come from subluxation. I saw and still see a chiropractor every week and when I was pregnant with both of my boys, I saw him maybe more than once a week...(it made my deliveries much easier...and insanly quick).

I would suggest the chiropractor to see if they can help you naturally, rather than taking a pain pill or ending up having surgery...

It is unfortunate someone told you to not go see a chiropractor when you are pregnant because of how you lay on the table. They have pillows and different techniques for pregnant women.

J. -
I had the same problem while I was pregnant. Fortunately, I was in school at the time and found a great solution! You don't always need to see a chiropractor for pain. True Carpal Tunnel is a blocked nerve at the wrist. You can have symptoms (some, all, or one) of Carpal Tunnel, but have a nerve pinched some where else (like behind the scapula/shoulder blade or up in the trapezius/shoulder), which it sounds like in your case.
What I have found to work was a simple MASSAGE. You can have a massage while pregnant, but we do it while you are lying on your side. Not nearly as comfortable, but still helpful. If you can find a Massage Therapist that does pregnancy massage, you'd be in heaven! If you could find a Massage Therapist that knows Neuromuscular Therapy (muscle specific), that would be even better! I would offer to help you out in that field, but I'm just too far away! I'm betting that part of the reason it's happening is due to the car accident you were in and most of it is pregnancy related. If you have any questions, let me know. I think I could find a Massage Therapist in your area that does Neuromuscular Therapy if you like.

~L.

I am a doula (labor and delivery coach) from Beaver Dam. I might get a second opinion. It is possible that the numbness is from baby pressing on nerves, but if you are concerned and it isn't passing, I would recommend my clients get a second opinion. Maybe it is just that, but how you feel about it is also important. Going to a chiropracter is most likely fine. Some docs just straight up don't like chiros for any of their patients. They have special tables for pregnant women where there is a hole for the belly.

sounds like it's ulnar nerve irritation originating at your elbow. try wearing some cushioning elbow pads and avoid salt. seeing a chiropractor is a good option too. it will probably go away after you deliver, though december is a long time to wait.

but i think you should switch doctors, since it clearly is not carpal tunnel (wrong distribution / pattern of numbness), and why would she think it was a blood clot?

Hi J. - I began going to the chiropractor when I found out I was pregnant - I didn't lay on my tummy. Most adjustments were done with me on my side or on the table with the center dropped down. I thought it made all the aches and pains later in the pregnancy less bothersome. (I also had regular massages at the chiropractor from an experienced person which was very nice too!). I went in for a visit as soon as I could after I delivered to get my pelvis back where it was supposed to be and I felt so much better!

http://www.langfordchiropractic.com/

Langford Chiropractic in St. Paul was where I went and maybe if you called them they could recommend a collegue in your area? The Dr's are female and very nice so I'm sure they could point you in the right direction.

Good luck :)

That sounds just like me!!!! My son was born just b4 christmas 2004 and this is about the time that I had the numb feeling only I waited 2 months b4 I talked to my Dr. For me it actually was the worst pain in my pregnancy (I didn't have to go through labor) and it was actually up into my shoulders a few days b4 my sons birth. But it did go away!!!!!!!

I also had the same thing when I was pregnant with my twins. I woke up every morning with numbness, but everytually it went away once I got up and moving around. But I remember that my hands, arms, never really felt "normal". If I remember correctly I finally went to the dr after I had delivered because it had continued for a bit. He ruled out Carpel Tunnel but never really gave me an explanation of what it could be. It eventually went away, probably after about 2 months.

Definately carpal tunnel. I'm a hairdresser, and a lot of people in the industry get it. Those are the exact symptoms of it.

Swelling in pregnancy I think brings it on.

Go to Walgreens and get supports for your wrists and wear them as much as you can. (Ask the pharmacist, s/he will know exactly what your talking about).

I had this exact same thing both while pregnant with my daughter who is 19 months old and now with my current pregnancy - I'm 30 weeks pregnant. My midwife gave me a splint to wear at night and it helped tremendously the first time and is proving to be a lifesaver this time as well - the nights I wear the brace I wake up with little or no numbness - the nights I don't I am guaranteed to experience the numbness and tingling to some extent all day long. The numbness and tingling went away entirely about 2 - 3 weeks after delivery. Good luck - hope this helps.

J.,
Have you considered seeing a physical therapist for this? I am a physical therapist myself, who specializes in treating pregnancy related musculoskeletal conditions, and I see this quite frequently with patients who are pregnant. It (carpal tunnel syndrome) is often due to the fluid retention which can place pressure on the median nerve in your wrists ,causing numbness in your hands and often up your arms also. Wrist splints help tremendously, especially at night, as do exercises for your wrists/forearms to help with flexibility of the muscles and nerves. I would highly recommend seeing a physical therapist for this. My opinion/advice for my clients who are pregnant is to be cautious of chiropractic treatment during pregnancy, at least be careful to avoid the manipulations. Joint manipulations are not good for your joints that are lax/loose already due to the hormonal changes that cause looseness during pregnancy. Why would you manipulate a loose joint to try to make it looser? This is most likely part of the cause of the problem (joint laxity) This is my professional opinion. Good luck!

J.~
I'm on pregnancy #4 and i've had the numbness during 3 of the 4 pregnancies - told the same thing and it always goes away post-partum. I was told it had something to do with the water retention adn general swelling which pinches nerves in thje forearm.... whatever it is, like I said, mine has always gone away without a problem.

don't panic - it's not worth it.

I also had this problem during pregnancy. A chiropractor also fixed it for me. It was pinched nerves in my back.

C.

I had that same feeling when I was pregnant. Just about the time that I started to get worried about it, it disappeared. I do a lot of computer work, so I didn't think much of it for at least a couple weeks. Hopefully yours is the same type of thing.

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