Arm falling asleep at night - MS?

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Arm falling asleep at night - MS?

Postby hlm286 » Fri Sep 18, 2009 4:12 pm

I'm recently diagnosed and lately my arms have been "falling asleep" frequently during the night. Sometimes it happens when I sleep with them under my pillow (although I've always slept like this and it's never bothered me before, I just seem more sensitive to the pressure now) but sometimes it happens when I'm on my back and they're just at my sides. It wakes me up in a panic because I'm afraid of it being the numbness but then they gradually "wake up". The strange part of it is that my husband has been having it happen to him too lately but I'm the one with MS. So I don't know if this is a common thing with MS or maybe something else since it's happening to both of us. Does anyone else get this from their MS?
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Postby jimmylegs » Fri Sep 18, 2009 5:41 pm

when i told my neuro about having that problem he said ' that doesn't sound like ms ' and 5 minutes later i also had carpal tunnel syndrome.
i wasn't having much trouble with it since 2007 but the last week or so it's been brutal. it's happening right now actually, because i'm leaning against a couple pillows in bed. personally i think nerves in my neck are getting pinched. i'm trying to talk to my gp about a referrral, but we keep having to make more appointments over and over again - too many things to talk about :S
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Re: Arm falling asleep at night - MS?

Postby euphoniaa » Sat Sep 19, 2009 1:54 am

Hi hlm,

I suspect that everyone has had an arm "fall asleep" before, and if it's positional or comes and goes with movement, it's very unlikely that it's being caused by MS. I have severe problems like that, but I attribute almost all of them to my peripheral neuropathy (HNPP and carpal tunnel, etc., etc.) instead. I just spent several months with completely numb fingertips while taking yoga, but it has finally dwindled down to just a twinge in the weeks since I stopped taking the class.

I post about the peripheral nervous system on here ad nauseum :) , because the PNS consists of every nerve except the brain and spinal cord and anything that affects them can mimic MS. http://www.thisisms.com/ftopict-8138.html

Take a deep breath and repeat after me, "It's not always MS...it's not always MS...it's not always MS..." :)

P.S. Here's a link to a google answer for what makes arms & legs fall asleep - not that it's the definitive explanation, just a quick one for you. http://health.howstuffworks.com/question552.htm
Dx'd with MS & HNPP (hereditary peripheral neuropathy) 7/03 but must have had MS for 30 yrs before that. I've never taken meds for MS except 1 yr experiment on LDN. (I found diet, exercise, sleep, humor, music help me the most.)
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Postby AndrewKFletcher » Sat Sep 19, 2009 2:01 am

Time and time again we hear about people with neurological conditions experiencing problems during the night while sleeping on a flat bed.

Ever thought it might be that sleeping flat does not bode well for the nervous system and that tilting your bed by raising it at the head end by 6 inches will enable your nervous system to continue as if you were awake and active?

You might want to read what I have posted on this forum to understand why your arm is causing you problems during the night.

Also read Foreverspring posts.

Andrew
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Postby jimmylegs » Sat Sep 19, 2009 5:02 am

one of the most reliable ways for me to have my left hand go to sleep is to turn onto my right side and prop up my upper body, resting my head on my right hand. i'm doing it right now and typing left hand only... and there it goes, numb. when i lie back flat on my back, the numbness (the *extra* numbness i mean) will go away and i'll be back to 'normal' numbness for me. different strokes for different folks i guess.
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Re: Arm falling asleep at night - MS?

Postby JenniferF » Wed Sep 23, 2009 9:52 am

hlm286 wrote:I'm recently diagnosed and lately my arms have been "falling asleep" frequently during the night. Sometimes it happens when I sleep with them under my pillow (although I've always slept like this and it's never bothered me before, I just seem more sensitive to the pressure now) but sometimes it happens when I'm on my back and they're just at my sides. It wakes me up in a panic because I'm afraid of it being the numbness but then they gradually "wake up". The strange part of it is that my husband has been having it happen to him too lately but I'm the one with MS. So I don't know if this is a common thing with MS or maybe something else since it's happening to both of us. Does anyone else get this from their MS?


I get it. Have no idea if it is an MS thing or not. It does affect the side of my body that is affected by neuro symptoms during the day, not the other side.

FYI a friend of mine who owns a bakery (lots of kneading bread), and during the day has repetitive-stress-injury symptoms, can only sleep on her back. If she tries to sleep on her side, her arms get numb.

So definitely can be a non-MS thing.

Jen.
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Postby notasperfectasyou » Wed Sep 23, 2009 12:17 pm

oooohhhhhhhhh...........

So it's not just Kim.

It's been odd. We got one of those foam mattresses with the 3 inchs on the top of special foam. It was great for the first 10 months. Then a couple months ago, Kim started complaining about her arm falling asleep, then her back started hurting.

I bought a fiberbed top that seemed to help for a month and then Kim's arms and back started up again.

Then I tried to add a 3inch foam top on top of the foam bed's 3inches of foam. Then I combined the fiberbed with the foam.

I have flipped the mattress, tried every combination of foam, plywood, sleeping bags, oh, yeah, also bought a 1inch thick piece of spongy foam, figure out how many variations of all this are possible. I drove Kim crazy. I can say, making it squishyer is really not helpful.

And then, recently I stripped all that stuff off and just put the 1inch thick spongy mat ontop of the 3inches of foam that came with the mattress. And Kim seems to be getting along with it.

BUT, we must be careful about how we associate cause and effect - we of all people should know that, right? Now I retell the story -

3 months ago, Kim stopped going to aqua aerobics because the place was flooded with summer campers. Her arms falling asleep and back ache got more pronounced as the summer continued. Kim's restarted her class when school started. She's feeling better now.

I don't know what to say, could be a combination of both. Circulation of blood through the body is important, I don't think this is MS related - but I also wouldn't argue with the CCSVI folks if they thought it was.

But, yaknowwhat - I'd still mess with the bed. Flipping the mattress can be interesting. Topping with unzipped sleeping bags can get you a different feel. Don't put more foam ontop of foam. The fiber bed was also useful for a while. I try stuff like this and see what happens for you. Good luck. Ken
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Postby AndrewKFletcher » Sat Sep 26, 2009 12:17 am

Mess with the bed a little more and raise the head end by six inches and see if this has an affect over the next 4 months.

Water therapy also supprts the body in a vertical position for a prolonged period. Might just be a conicidence but I doubt it.

Andrew
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