December 22, 2020 6 min read

Everyone knows that a good night’s sleep is the foundation for a great day, but actually getting a good night of rest sometimes seems like a distant dream. From noise nuisances to uncomfortable mattresses and buzzing bedtime thoughts, there are a number of common offenders that can come between you and quality sleep, and without a resolution, you could see a negative impact on your overall well-being.  

If arm numbness while sleeping is on your list of bedtime offenders, you’re in the right place. In this post, we’ll take a look at how a pillow for arm numbness works as a solution to nighttime restlessness. Use the links below to navigate throughout the article or read end to end for a comprehensive overview on the topic.

What is Arm Numbness?

If you’ve ever felt a tingling, pins and needles sensation in your limbs, like when you cross your legs for too long or hold the same position without moving, you’re probably familiar with the discomfort of arm numbness. When you’re sleeping, you’re likely resting in the same position for hours at a time, which can cause pressure to build up on your nerve endings and lead to a tingling feeling of numbness. 

When your arms fall asleep at night, it’s generally because you’re applying extra pressure on your limbs by pinning your own arm down with your body or resting your arm underneath your partner’s body weight. This sensation can also affect other parts of your body, like your hands or legs.

What causes arm numbness?

what causes arm numbness infographic

Arm numbness while sleeping can happen for a number of reasons, including:

  • Applying excess pressure on nerve endings, like when you sleep with your arms pinned under your own body or your partner’s body for an extended period of time. This is also known as nerve impingement.
  • Existing peripheral neuropathy nerve issues can also contribute to the presence of arm numbness at night. These conditions may include:
    • Carpal tunnel syndrome
    • Tennis or golfer’s elbow
    • Hypothyroidism
    • Diabetes
    • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Excessive alcohol consumption can result in alcoholic neuropathy, which may cause arm numbness.
  • Vitamin B12 deficiency can disrupt the functionality of your nervous system and contribute to arm numbness while active or while sleeping.

When to see a doctor for arm numbness

In the majority of cases, the most concern nighttime arm numbness should cause is an uncomfortable disruption of your sleep, but certain cases of arm numbness may signal a deeper underlying issue. If your arm numbness persists while you’re awake or is significantly impacting the quality of your sleep, you may want to schedule a visit with your doctor.

man suffering from arm numbness holding wrist

At your appointment, your doctor will take a look at your medical history, discuss your symptoms, and likely perform a physical examination. With this information, your physician can help identify your condition and direct you toward effective solutions, which may include a pillow for arm numbness. 

How to minimize arm numbness at night

If nighttime arm numbness is coming between you and a good night’s sleep, it’s probably time to take a look at your treatment options. Depending on the severity and cause of your numbness, appropriate treatment options may fall into one of the following categories:

  • Medication: Anti-inflammatory, anti-seizure medicine, and antidepressants can be used to address nerve issues and reduce both daytime and nighttime arm numbness. 
  • Surgery: Though it's typically a last-resort option, surgery can be used to resolve more severe cases of nerve damage that may be the underlying cause of your issues.
  • Physical therapy: Strengthening your wrists with basic stretches can reduce symptoms of carpal tunnel and other conditions that may be causing your arm numbness.
  • Adjusting your sleep position or using a pillow for arm numbness: As you know by now, one of the most common causes of nighttime arm numbness is due to the excess pressure that’s applied to the nerve endings in your arm while you sleep. Adjusting your sleep posture or using a pillow for arm numbness can alleviate the pressure from your arm, and as a result, reduce or potentially eliminate symptoms while you sleep.
  • In this next section, we’ll discuss how pillows for arm numbness work and how you can find the best pillow for numb arms.

    How a Pillow for Arm Numbness Can Help

    A pillow for arm numbness works by taking the pressure off of your downside arm, allowing your arms to rest without restricting blood flow or applying extra weight to your arm’s nerve endings while you sleep. MedCline’s Shoulder Relief System is a three-component solution that gently elevates your torso to take pressure off of your downside arm, while at the same time allowing that arm to rest within a comfortable, flexible pocket.


    pillow for arm numbness medcline infographic

    MedCline’s pillow for side sleepers with arm numbness is a patented design that features components designed to alleviate arm numbness and shoulder pain. The Shoulder Relief System utilizes a symmetrical design, gradual incline, and flexible arm construction to relieve pressure and restore restful sleep in no time.

    Best Pillow for Arm Numbness FAQs

    Any time you’re evaluating solutions to improve your wellness, it’s a good idea to do your research ahead of time and consider all options available to you. In this section, we’ll describe some ways to help you find the best pillow for arm numbness.

    How to use a pillow to relieve arm numbness?

    Using MedCline’s Shoulder Relief System is simple. Here’s how it works:

    1. Set Up: Your Sleep System can be put together by following the easy instructions provided with your order. Once you’ve put your pillow for arm numbness together, simply place it on top of your mattress.
    2. Get In:Allow your downside arm to drop into the provided arm pocket as you rest on your side.
    3. Find Your Comfort:Adjust your position as needed until you find your ideal comfort. Not finding your comfort immediately? Speak to one of our Sleep Specialists for help finding your preferred position using our pillow for arm numbness.

    how to use medcline shoulder pillow infographic

    What is the best pillow for arm numbness?

    The best pillow for arm numbness should allow your arms to rest comfortably by alleviating the pressure and pain you experience on a nightly basis. Our shoulder relief pillow  is engineered to comfortably eliminate arm pressure while still giving you enough flexibility to find a comfortable sleeping posture that’s tailored to your needs.

    What is the best sleeping position to reduce arm numbness?

    Sleeping on your back with your arms at your side can help you avoid arm numbness, but it could also result in discomfort in other ways, like if you suffer from back pain or acid reflux at night.

    Note: If you do deal with nighttime reflux and heartburn, consider trying our acid reflux pillow, which uses the doctor-recommended sleeping position for nighttime heartburn relief.

    Can using the wrong pillow cause arm pain?

    It could. When you sleep with pressure directly on your downside arm — like when your head rests on a pillow that’s on top of your arm — you could experience arm numbness. By elevating your body and taking pressure off of your arm, you can sleep more comfortably, without shoulder pain or arm numbness.



    woman waking up without pain

    Meet MedCline’s Shoulder Relief Sleep System

    Not only can our Shoulder Relief System help alleviate shoulder pain symptoms, but it can also act as a pillow for arm numbness. Our patented three-component system allows your arm to rest comfortably within the provided arm pocket while your torso is positioned at a gentle incline, taking the pressure off of your muscles, joints, and nerves.

    To learn more about how our pillow for arm numbness works and how else MedCline can help, visit our FAQ page.

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