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Weakness in arm after sleeping on it.

Hi, last night I was awoken by a numb and gimpy arm, which is not uncommon for me , as I sleep on it often. I couldn't feel my arm for 10 or so seconds, until I regained feeling. I noticed that I hadn't fully regained it and my arm still felt a little limp. I went back to sleep, dismissing it. I woke up in the morning and noticed my arm still feels weak and it feels tight in the bicep while flexing. This has been going on for 12 hours. Any ideas at what could be wrong?
It has been stressing me out because I take panic attacks easily and am highly anxious,
I'd also like to note that, I had an infected cut on my elbow which scabbed over. I pulled it off, which made it puss, and I immediately applied Hydrogen Peroxide, polysporon and applied a bandage. Is there a possibility that it had spreaded?

- A distressed 15 year old.
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replied March 31st, 2012

Firstly I know how you feel, I too have had numbness, weakness and "pins and needles" in my arms, legs, hands and feet over the years.

It sounds like you have poor circulation. There are changes to your diet which may help.

You're only 15 but you may be consuming too much caffiene. Caffiene will restrict blood vessels, although the effect may wear off as it is processed through your system. Replace caffiene with ginger tea. You can make this by buying ginger root, cubing it into small sugar sized cubes and resting a couple of cubes in boiling water for a few minutes to make a tea. Ginger may help relax your blood vessels, the opposite of constriction.

Ensure you do eat some red meat (preferably not highly processed burger patties but organic steak). You need iron to ensure sufficient oxygen capacity in your blood. Once a week is enough, but the key is regularly. Drinking orange juice with your red meat meal will ensure maximum iron absorption.

Finally, take a look at dealing with the source of your panic attacks. Perhaps seeing a therapist or counsellor to discuss why you feel anxious and have panic attacks? If you find the cause of these problems you have the key to curing them.

Partly it may be to do with your personality, but when you're only 15 if there is a personal tendency towards certain behaviours you have an enormous capacity to change to something you are happier with.

Partly it may be to do with your environment. There may be something which happened in your life which caused stress and now you feel stressed more easily. A therapist or counsellor could help here.

Finally, if a wound scabs over leave the scab. It's your body's natural method of healing itself. Removing scabs can cause long term scarring. Keep the wound clean and very dry, and yes hydrogen peroxide is going to kill any bacteria causing infection, but dilute it and use it sparingly because it will also kill your skin cells if too concentrated!

If your infection spreads you'll know about it. The arm would get hot, around the would would be very red, sore and tender to touch. You could develop a fever. If this happens you need antibiotics fast, see a doctor. But it sounds like that is not what's happening so chill out and look after yourself.

Good luck!
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