What is tingling?

Tingling (paresthesia) is an unusual sensation most commonly felt in your hands, feet, arms and legs. Tingling is often associated with numbness, or a decrease in the ability to feel or sense pressure or texture.

Tingling can be associated with a wide variety of conditions, including prolonged pressure on a nerve, vitamin or mineral deficiencies, multiple sclerosis (disease that affects the brain and spinal cord, causing weakness, coordination and balance difficulties, and other problems), and stroke, among many others.

Tingling can be mild and result from simple pressure on a nerve, such as when your foot or leg falls asleep when you are seated in the same position for a long time. Tingling can also be a symptom of more serious permanent nerve damage or underlying disease. Therefore, it is important to identify the cause of any unexplained or unusual tingling.

Seek immediate medical care (call 911) if you, or someone you are with, experience serious symptoms, such as the sudden onset of unexplained tingling; weakness or numbness on just one side of your body; sudden severe headache; sudden loss of vision or vision changes; changes in speech such as garbled or slurred speech; or the onset of tingling following a head, neck or back injury.

If your tingling is persistent, unexplained, or causes you concern, seek prompt medical care.

SYMPTOMS

What other symptoms might occur with tingling?

Tingling may accompany other symptoms, which vary depending on the underlying disease, disorder or condition.... Read more about tinglingsymptoms

CAUSES

What causes tingling?

Tingling can be caused by a wide variety of conditions. The most common cause of tingling is a compressed nerve. Other causes of tingling include head and neck injuries, loss of blood flow to an area, vitamin or mineral deficiencies, and diseases such as multiple sclerosis (disease that affects the brain and spinal cord, causing weakness, coordination and balance difficulties, and other problems), among many other causes.... Read more about tinglingcauses

Medical Reviewer: All content has been reviewed by board-certified physicians under the direction of Rich Klasco, M.D., FACEP. Last Annual Review Date: May 2, 2011 Copyright: © Copyright 2011 Health Grades, Inc. All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or reprinted without permission from Health Grades, Inc. Use of this information is governed by the HealthGrades User Agreement.

This Article is Filed Under: Brain and Nerves