In this article:
Paresthesia is an issue that can affect any part of the body, causing a sensation of burning or tingling without any specific reason. It is commonly observed in the arms and legs. If untreated, it can cause a lot of pain, discomfort, and difficulty in mobility.
Paresthesia can occur chronically or can also be transient or temporary. A lot of people have experienced what is called temporary paresthesia, which is due to sustained pressure on a nerve and is often defined as a sensation of “pins and needles.”
If you sit with your legs crossed for a long period of time or fall asleep with your arm under your head, you must have experienced temporary paresthesia too. It occurs without any warning and is generally painless and defined as tingling, numbness, skin crawling, or itching. (1)
Chronic paresthesia, on the other hand, can be due to a neurological disorder such as stroke or nerve damage. (1) Those who suffer from temporary paresthesia are at an increased risk of developing it chronically. (2)
How to Treat Paresthesia Naturally
Here are some ways you can deal with paresthesia naturally at home.
1. Apply a warm compress
Warm compression increases blood circulation to the applied area. Applying a warm compress to the affected area may make you feel better as it will relieve the symptoms of paresthesia.
For warm compression, dip a clean towel in a bowl with warm water and press it on the affected area for a few minutes until the discomfort has settled down. Taking a hot shower is also a good idea. (3)
2. Take an Epsom salt bath
Epsom salt contains magnesium sulfate as its major ingredient. Research has shown that magnesium is a helpful element to deal with pain and nervous system issues. For this reason, Epsom salt may come in handy when experiencing paresthesia. (4)(5)
All you have to do is dip your hands or feet where you feel numbness and tingling.
3. Massage the affected area
Massage is linked with increased blood circulation to the affected area. This can be helpful in treating the symptoms of paresthesia. Massage also stimulates your nerves, improving their functioning.
Gently massage the affected area with olive oil or mustard oil in circular motions gently for at least a few minutes. Massaging a few times every day is good for paresthesia. (6)
4. Drink ginger tea
Ginger helps improve blood circulation, which is a good way of managing paresthesia-related symptoms. Drinking ginger tea at least twice a day is a good way to stimulate the nervous system.
To make ginger tea, boil ginger in a cup of water for a few minutes and add honey to taste. You can also take ginger tablets, which are available at pharmacies after taking medical advice. (7)
5. Drink turmeric milk
Turmeric (Curcuma longa) may be helpful in treating numbness, tingling feeling, or stinging sensation commonly associated with peripheral neuropathy.
This is due to the presence of a plant chemical called curcumin in turmeric. Curcumin has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and neuroprotective actions, which can be helpful in managing symptoms of paresthesia. (8)
You can include turmeric in your daily diet by adding a spoonful of turmeric powder to warm milk and drinking it twice a day.
6. Implement dietary interventions
Here are some changes in your diet that might help with your paresthesia:
a. Increase magnesium intake
Your nervous system depends a lot on magnesium to function properly. Therefore, to prevent any nerve damage, ensure that you have a good intake of magnesium in your diet.
Magnesium also causes good blood circulation. Magnesium-rich foods include:
- Vegetables, especially green leafy vegetables
- Nuts and seeds
- Dark chocolate
If you are highly deficient in magnesium, your doctor may suggest you take magnesium supplements. Do not take supplementation without your doctor’s advice. (4)
b. Ensure adequate vitamin B
An adequate amount of vitamin B in the body is important for the proper functioning of the nervous system. Any kind of deficiency in vitamin B, specifically vitamin B12 and vitamin B6, can increase the risk of paresthesia. (9)
Therefore, make sure that your diet is rich in vitamin B.
Foods high in vitamin B12 include:
Foods high in vitamin B6 include:
- Nuts and seeds
- Dry fruits
7. Stay physically active
Regular exercise is a very good way of improving your blood circulation. Therefore, exercising regularly can be good for managing paresthesia, especially when it comes to improving mobility.
Even just 15 minutes of aerobic activity is good enough for starters. This can include running, walking, jogging, and swimming. Stretching exercises and yoga are also good ways to deal with paresthesia. (10)
Preventive Tips Agianst Paresthesia
Try these measures to lower your chances of experiencing paresthesia:
- Don’t wear tight-fitting clothes. (11)
- Avoid severe temperature shifts. Do not blast off cold air from your air conditioner suddenly after being in the warm weather. (12)(13)
- Temperature might be a trigger. If you have to go out in warm weather, make sure you wear a hat or a scarf to protect yourself from direct heat.
- Always be conscious of your body temperature when you are exercising; don’t let your body get too heated up.
- Maintain a daily log of foods and activities that trigger paresthesia, so you can avoid them.
- Make sure to get a good night’s sleep. (13)
- Limit alcohol intake. (14)
- Quit smoking. (15)
- Avoid repetitive movements. (16)
Warning Signs and When to See a Doctor
The following signs are symptoms are of particular concern if they occur along with paresthesia:
- Weakness that becomes severe over a few days
- Inability to raise the head against gravity
- Difficulty chewing, talking, and swallowing
- Loss of ambulation (difficulty moving your muscles)
Any treatment you might need will depend on the cause, but do consult your doctor if paresthesia keeps coming back after the initial recovery or if the sensations are persistent.
Most-Asked Questions About Paresthesia
What are the risk factors for chronic paresthesia?
The risk factors for chronic paresthesia include: (2)
- Untreated temporary paresthesia
- Autoimmune disorders
- Neurological disorders
- Multiple sclerosis
- Toxic substances, such as lead or radiation
- Taking medicine for epilepsy
Is alcohol bad for those who suffer from paresthesia?
Alcohol can make paresthesia symptoms worse. Alcohol is not good for your nervous system, and it has a negative impact on blood circulation. Therefore, alcohol should be consumed to a limit by those who suffer from paresthesia. (14)
Is acupuncture a way to treat paresthesia?
Acupuncture is a type of treatment where needles are inserted around the affected area to improve blood circulation. Through this effect, acupuncture can be linked to improvements in paresthesia-related symptoms. (17)
How is paresthesia diagnosed?
Diagnosis is made after an evaluation of your medical history, physical examination, and blood and other tests as well as discerning the condition responsible for the paresthesia. (1)
Paresthesia is a condition that can cause discomfort and pain, but there are several natural ways to manage its symptoms. Warm compressions, Epsom salt baths, massage, and drinking ginger tea or turmeric milk are some of the natural remedies that can be used to improve blood circulation and reduce nerve-related issues.
Additionally, dietary interventions, such as increasing magnesium and vitamin B intake, and staying physically active, can also help prevent and manage paresthesia.
It is important to note that chronic paresthesia may require medical intervention, and anyone experiencing persistent symptoms should consult a doctor.