Symptoms, conditions and causes

Why do I get numb hands?

Myelin is the coating around the nervous system, and it allows nerve impulses to travel. Without enough myelin, you may experience paresthesia or abnormal sensations. One cause of numb hands and feet is diabetes. A thiamine deficiency may also be involved because it’s needed to make myelin. Taking fat-soluble thiamine (benfotiamine) and changing your diet may help improve this situation.

Another big cause of numbness in the hands is a vitamin B12 deficiency. Vitamin B12 deficiency is very common. The loss of myelin commonly occurs in the cervical spine (neck), and the degeneration can lead to various problems throughout the body.

Other symptoms of a vitamin B12 deficiency:

• An imbalance in your gait

• Urinary retention or bladder problems

• Problems in the feet

• Shooting pain in the spine when moving your head down

• Neck stiffness

One of the biggest causes of a vitamin B12 deficiency is a loss of stomach acid, which can happen with age. Without enough stomach acid, you can’t absorb vitamin B12. Betaine hydrochloride can help acidify the stomach and increase B12 absorption.

Other causes of low vitamin B12:

• A lack of vitamin B12 in the diet

• Antacids

• Metformin

• A certain genetic weakness

• Inflammation in the stomach or intestines

• Gastric bypass surgery

You may need to go beyond consuming foods rich in vitamin B12 and take it as a supplement. In my opinion, the best supplement would be methylcobalamin. If you have a genetic issue, you may need a supplement that contains methylcobalamin, methylfolate, and vitamin B6.

Last updated: Dec 18, 2023 16:16 PM