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frienemies0113's avatar

Does anyone know how and why your feet fall asleep?

Asked by frienemies0113 (53points) July 14th, 2010

If i stay in one position for a long time, my legs or arms will fall asleep and start tingling. A couple times my ears have done that! I know it has something to do with blood passsing through something or uhhhhh….

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7 Answers

sleepdoc's avatar

The majority of time it is actually related to nerves and their blood supply. If you are a younger jelly it is a bit uncommon to have all these things happening. There is something called Hereditary Neuropathy wiith liabiility to Pressure Palsies. People with this have lots of problems with things “falling asleep”. It is possible you might have something akin to this. As we get older we all have more problems with this stuff.

frienemies0113's avatar

oh, I get it! Nerves allow you to feel pain when you touch a hot stove, because if you didn’t feel it, your hand would burn without knowing. So if your nerves didn’t have enough blood in them to fufill their job for you to feel things, they’d go numb and…you wouldn’t feel anything.

sleepdoc's avatar

Well that is kind of it. But I am sure you don’t want a physiology lesson.

frienemies0113's avatar

yeahhhh….no. i’ll learn that in college. Physiology is too complicated for me and my 13 yr old mind

gasman's avatar

Sometimes it’s direct pressure on a peripheral nerve. Other times it’s pressure on an artery to the extremity, leading to decreased blood flow to the nerves. Unless it persists for 1–2 hours or more, it should go back to normal within minutes of relieving the pressure.

BoBo1946's avatar

Usually, you feel this familiar sensation after you’ve been putting pressure on part of you­r body—sitting on a foot, sleeping on an arm, etc. When you apply this pressure for a prolonged period of time, you actually cut off communication from your brain to parts of your body. The pressure squeezes nerve pathways so that the nerves can’t transmit electrochemical impulses properly. Nerve impulses carry sensation information from nerve endings in the body to the brain, as well as instructions from the brain to the parts of the body. When you interfere with this transfer by squeezing the nerve pathways, you don’t have full feeling in that body part, and your brain has trouble telling the body part what to do.

Medical article!

perspicacious's avatar

There are a numbers of reasons. If it happens when you are not sitting on your foot (or something similar) see your doctor.

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