Numbness on one side of the body: symptoms, causes and treatment (2023)

seek emergency care

Sudden numbness or weakness in the face, arm or leg is awarning sign of a stroke. Call 911 if you notice this in yourself or anyone else. Other signs include blurred vision, dizziness, confusion, slurred speech and a sudden severe headache.

Numbness on one side of the body can be caused by a variety of health conditions and can be a medical emergency. Causes include nerve damage or compression, stroke, and systemic medical problems. Fortunately, locating your sensory issues and corresponding symptoms can help you identify their origins.

This article describes the most common causes of one-sided numbness and discusses typical symptoms and treatments for these conditions.

Numbness on one side of the body: symptoms, causes and treatment (1)

Symptoms of numbness on one side of the body

If you experience numbness on one side of your body, you may experience other related symptoms as well. The following symptoms are common with unilateral sensory problems and can help identify the source of the problem:

  • Weakness in the face, arms or legs
  • Difficulty speaking or understanding
  • vision loss
  • dizziness
  • paresthesia(burning or tingling)
  • Loss of sensations of pain or temperature.
  • cramps
  • muscle atrophy(decreasing in size)
  • Shake
  • unsteady walk
  • Sexual, bowel or bladder dysfunction

Regardless of the cause of your single-sided deafness, you should speak to a doctor right away if you notice any of these symptoms due to their potential severity.

Causes of numbness on one side of the body

Many medical conditions can cause numbness on one side of the body. The most common ones include:

  • Stroke (stroke)
  • peripheral neuropathy
  • spinal radiculopathy
  • Multiple Sclerosis (MS)

punchesThey occur when blood flow to the brain is blocked or stopped, or when bleeding occurs in the brain. When this happens, your brain runs out of oxygen and loses its ability to communicate with certain areas of your body. This quickly leads to sensitivity problems (eg, single-sided deafness) and movement deficits.

peripheral neuropathyIt occurs when one (or more) nerves of the peripheral nervous system are damaged. This can happen as a result of physical injury or trauma,arthrosisin a neighboring joint, chronic repetitive movements,Diabetes, or vascular problems.

Depending on the nerve affected, peripheral neuropathy can cause numbness limited to a specific strip of skin or spread down an arm or leg.

Spinal radiculopathy is the compression or injury of aNerve root when it branches from the spinal cord. If that happens inthe cervical region (neck), you may have sensory and movement problems in one (or both) of your arms. insidelower back (lumbar region).spine, radiculopathy can lead to numbness and strength problems in one (or both) legs.

Depending on the source of the spinal radiculopathy, these symptoms can appear quickly or slowly worsen over time. The most common causes of this concern areBulging or herniated disc,degenerative disc disease,spinal arthritis or spondylosisand bone spurs.

Multiple sclerosisis a disease of the central nervous system that occurs when the protective covering around the nerves in your body (calleddie Myelinscheide) It is damaged. This damage affects the nerves' ability to transmit signals properly and can lead to many symptoms, including numbness on one side of the body.

Accordinglythe MS guythe symptoms of the disease can be constant and progressive, or they can be more intermittent.

drug deafness

Several different classes of drugs can cause numbness as a side effect. This includes medications for high blood pressure, cancer, seizures, infections such as the immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and autoimmune diseases.

How to treat numbness on one side of the body

Treatments for single-sided deafness vary widely, depending on the cause. In any case, consult a doctor for diagnosis and treatment.

(Video) Nerve Disorders - Head, Spine, Numbness in Arms & Legs: Concerns, Treatments & Integrative Approach

punchesare a medical emergency and you should be taken to the nearest hospital emergency room. A stroke is typicalstruggled with drugsto clear blockages in your artery.

Medicines that reduce swelling in the brain and protect it from damage are also commonly given.Surgery may be necessaryto remove a clot or repair damaged blood vessels. Rehabilitationafter a stroke, it is necessary to restore body functions.

Peripheral neuropathy can be treated in several ways. Lifestyle changes such as a healthy diet, regular exercise and quitting smoking can improve nerve health and function. Forneuropathy caused by diabetes, monitoring your glucose levels and maintaining a healthy diet can also be beneficial.

Also, certain types of peripheral neuropathy can be managed with neuropathic or immunosuppressant medications. In rarer cases, surgery may be needed to relieve compression or tension on an affected nerve.

Treatment for spinal radiculopathy can also vary widely. Physical therapy is often initiated to strengthen the core muscles and relieve tension on the pinched nerve root.Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)It can also help reduce the inflammation that could be causing your symptoms.

steroid injections in the spineThey are also sometimes needed when more conservative treatments are ineffective. In advanced cases of radiculopathy, surgery may be required.decompress the nerveÖFusion of the affected spinal segments.

Multiple sclerosisIt is mostly treated with prescription drugs. While there is no cure, a class of drugs is calleddisease-modifying therapies (DMT)It can help reduce flare-ups and slow the progression of the disease.

Additionally, physical therapy is sometimes requested to teach energy saving strategies and maintain muscle tone.changing your activityAvoiding extreme temperatures, stress, and fatigue can also reduce the likelihood of an MS flare-up.

Are there tests to diagnose the cause of deafness?

Depending on the diagnosis your doctor suspects, several tests may be done to confirm the condition. A physical exam, medical history, andneurological examinationis performed.

Imaging tests may include:

  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)- Provides detailed images of structures such as the brain, spine and muscles and can aid in the assessment of MS, radiculopathy or neuropathy
  • Computed tomography (CT): Used to get a clear picture of the brain when diagnosing a stroke
  • Electromyography (EMG): Used to assess nerve function in diagnosing radiculopathy or peripheral neuropathy
  • ultrasonic: Used to assess blood flow in an artery when looking for a stroke

When to see a doctor

Symptoms of a stroke require immediate emergency medical attention. Call 911 and be transported to an emergency room.

If you experience new or worsening numbness on one side of your body, see a doctor right away. This is especially true if the numbness is accompanied by any of the other symptoms listed above.

If your condition is not evaluated, you may be at greater risk of permanent disability and, in some cases, death, depending on the cause of the deafness. After a thorough exam, your doctor can provide an accurate diagnosis and determine which treatments are right for you.


Numbness on one side of the body can be caused by many different medical conditions, some of which are very serious. The most common possible causes are nerve damage, multiple sclerosis, or stroke.

Many other symptoms, such as weakness, dizziness, and slurred speech, can also accompany your sensory deficits. People with this type of deafness should be seen by a health professional urgently. A physical exam and imaging tests may be done to diagnose the condition. Treatment depends on the cause.

common questions

  • Is my deafness caused by a stroke?

    The numbness caused by a stroke usually affects one side of the body and can be noticed in the face, arms or legs. This sensory problem is often accompanied by slurred speech, vision loss, difficulty walking, and weakness. Stroke symptoms usually, but not always, appear quickly.

    To know more:What to do if someone has a stroke?

    (Video) The 8 Causes of Numbness in the Body
  • How do I know if I have multiple sclerosis?

    Multiple sclerosis causes numbness and weakness in the arms, trunk, and legs. These symptoms usually appear on just one side of the body and may be accompanied by fatigue, dizziness, blurred vision, difficulty walking, or bowel and bladder dysfunction. A complete examination by a physician is required to diagnose this central nervous system condition.

    To know more:early signs of MS

  • Can diabetes cause deafness?

    One of the most common side effects of diabetes is peripheral neuropathy. This condition occurs when consistently high levels of glucose damage the body's nerves.

    While the legs and feet are most commonly affected, the hands and arms can also be affected. This type of neuropathy can occur on just one side of the body or be bilateral.

    To know more:Tingling in hands and feet in diabetes

    (Video) Left Sided Facial Numbness: Main Causes

6 gears

Verywell Health only uses quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to back up the facts in our articles. read ourpublishing processto learn more about how we review our content and keep it accurate, reliable, and reliable.

  1. Society for Angiography and Cardiovascular Interventions.stroke warning sign.

  2. Medicina Johns Hopkins.attack.

  3. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Cerebrovascular Accidents.Peripheral Neuropathy Brochure.

  4. Medicine Penn.Radiculopathy (nerve root disease).

  5. Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation.Multiple sclerosis.

  6. Medline Plus.Neuropathy as a result of medication.

Numbness on one side of the body: symptoms, causes and treatment (2)

VonTim Petrie, DPT, OCS
Tim Petrie, DPT, OCS, is a certified orthopedist who has been practicing physical therapy for over a decade.

(Video) Neurologically Why You're Getting Numbness,Tingling, or Burning in Arms or Legs - Dr Mandell

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What disease causes numbness on one side of the body? ›

Stroke. Sudden numbness in the arm, leg, or face, especially on one side of the body, is an early symptom of stroke. Mini-strokes. Transient ischemic attacks, or mini-strokes, can cause one side of the face to go numb and droop .

What causes numbness on one part of the body? ›

Numbness is caused by damage, irritation or compression of nerves. A single nerve branch or several nerves may be affected, as with a slipped disk in the back or carpal tunnel syndrome in the wrist.

What can you do for numbness in your body? ›

Home remedies that may help to relieve uncomfortable numbness in the legs and feet include:
  1. Rest. Many of the conditions that cause leg and foot numbness, such as nerve pressure, improve with rest.
  2. Ice. ...
  3. Heat. ...
  4. Massage. ...
  5. Exercise. ...
  6. Supportive devices. ...
  7. Epsom salt baths. ...
  8. Mental techniques and stress reduction.

What causes nerve damage on one side of body? ›

Peripheral nerves can be damaged in several ways: Injury from an accident, a fall or sports, which can stretch, compress, crush or cut nerves. Medical conditions, such as diabetes, Guillain-Barre syndrome and carpal tunnel syndrome. Autoimmune diseases including lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and Sjogren's syndrome.

How do you know if numbness is serious? ›

Also seek emergency medical care if your numbness is accompanied by: Weakness or paralysis. Confusion. Difficulty talking.
Call 911 or seek emergency help if your numbness:
  1. Begins suddenly.
  2. Follows a recent head injury.
  3. Involves an entire arm or leg.

What can cause left side numbness? ›

Other causes of left-sided facial numbness include:
  • brain injuries.
  • dental surgery.
  • head or neck tumors.
  • autoimmune diseases, such as Guillain-Barré syndrome.
  • transient ischemic attacks.
  • chemical burns.
  • heat or fire burns.
  • severe allergic reactions.


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