Numbness in Hand While Sleeping: Causes, Remedies, and Prevention

Waking up with numbness in your hand can be an unsettling experience. It’s a common issue, and many people have encountered this sensation at some point. This phenomenon is often referred to as “sleeping hand” or “pins and needles.” In this blog post, we’ll delve into the causes of numbness in your hand while sleeping, suggest remedies to alleviate the discomfort, and provide tips on how to prevent it from happening.

Understanding Numbness in Hand While Sleeping:

Numbness in the hand during sleep is primarily caused by pressure on the nerves or blood vessels in the hand and wrist. This pressure can disrupt the normal blood flow and nerve signals, resulting in that familiar “pins and needles” feeling. Here are some common reasons for this occurrence:

1. Poor Sleeping Position:

  • Sleeping with your arm positioned under your head or body can lead to pressure on the nerves in the hand. This often happens when you sleep on your side or with your arm tucked under your pillow.

2. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome:

  • Carpal tunnel syndrome is a condition in which the median nerve, which runs through the wrist, becomes compressed. This can cause numbness in the hand, and it’s often exacerbated during sleep.

3. Thoracic Outlet Syndrome:

  • This condition involves the compression of blood vessels or nerves in the neck and shoulder region, leading to hand numbness. It can be aggravated by certain sleeping positions.

4. Poor Circulation:

  • Impaired circulation due to factors such as tight bedding, constrictive clothing, or underlying medical conditions can contribute to hand numbness during sleep.

Remedies for Numbness in Hand While Sleeping:

  1. Change Sleeping Position:
    • Avoid sleeping with your hand tucked under your pillow or body. Experiment with different sleeping positions to find the one that alleviates pressure on your hand and wrist.
  2. Use Ergonomic Pillows:
    • Invest in pillows designed to support your neck and shoulders, reducing the risk of nerve compression during sleep.
  3. Wrist Brace:
    • If you suspect you have carpal tunnel syndrome, wearing a wrist brace at night may help keep your wrist in a neutral position and reduce symptoms.
  4. Stretching and Exercise:
    • Engage in wrist and hand stretches and exercises during the day to improve circulation and reduce pressure on the nerves.
  5. Loose Bedding and Clothing:
    • Opt for loose, breathable bedding and sleepwear to prevent constriction of your hand or wrist during sleep.

Preventing Numbness in Hand While Sleeping:

  1. Maintain Good Sleeping Posture:
    • Be mindful of your sleeping position and avoid tucking your hand under your head or body.
  2. Regularly Change Sleeping Position:
    • If you tend to sleep in one position for an extended period, try to shift to a different position during the night.
  3. Stay Active:
    • Regular exercise can improve overall circulation, reducing the risk of numbness in your hand.
  4. Manage Underlying Conditions:
    • If you have conditions like carpal tunnel syndrome or thoracic outlet syndrome, consult a healthcare professional for appropriate management and treatment.


Numbness in your hand while sleeping is typically a benign issue caused by pressure on the nerves or blood vessels. By implementing the remedies and prevention tips mentioned above, you can alleviate discomfort and improve your overall sleep quality.

If numbness in your hand during sleep persists or is associated with other concerning symptoms, consult a healthcare professional to rule out underlying medical conditions and receive appropriate guidance for your specific situation. A good night’s sleep without interrupted sensation in your hand is achievable with the right approach.

Dr. Scott is a dedicated and experienced dietitian and nutritionist who helps people achieve their goals. He helps people share personalized nutrition plans. Promoting healthy eating tips and habits helps prevent chronic diseases.