Nerve damage Nerves can be damaged by pressure, stretch or by being torn. Most nerves are relatively resistant to damage but some are more susceptible than others. Nerves which have an insulating myelin sheath and which carry sensations of fine touch, joint position sense, the amount of stretch in muscles and the motor control of muscles are the first to experience damage from pressure. The smaller nerves without a myelin sheath which carry sensations of temperature and pain and control the digestive system are much more resistant to damage. When a nerve fiber is damaged it can often re-grow slowly - at about the rate your fingernails grow. There are many physiotherapies which can help in this process.
Nerve entrapment When a nerve gets "stuck" to the soft tissue that surrounds it (muscles, fascia, ligaments) it can become irritated. This happens as a result of a repetitive motion creating an adhesion or scar which sticks to the muscle. It can result in numbness and tingling of the affected area.
Neutral position The position in which there is the least tension or pressure on nerves, tendons, muscles and bones. Also called the resting position.
Neurologist A expert who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of disorders of the nervous system including the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) and the peripheral nervous system (sensory and motor nerves throughout the body) and diseases of the brain, spinal cord and muscles.
Non-contractile tissue Tissue that does not contract.
Non-invasive A medical procedure which does not penetrate or break skin or the cavity of the body.
Numbness A partial or total lack of sensation. There are several potential causes of numbness. The most common one is when blood supply to a nerve is cut off - as in the case of lying on your arm in bed. In this case, once blood is allowed back into the limb, the sensation returns. Another cause is when the sensory fibers of a nerve are damaged. In this scenario, the lack of sensation is constant and other sensations such as fine touch and vibration sense are lost. The muscle also weakens. A third scenario is when certain touch sensations do not reach the brain. In this case, there is an inability to transfer the sensory signals. This scenario may involve periods of numbness for no apparent reason.
Desk Doctor is new software that identifies Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) and targets it accurately with a personal treatment plan. First the program guides you through on-screen medical tests. Then Desk Doctor uses its built-in reasoning to compile the optimum video-guided exercise program to reverse problems and keep you healthy. More on Desk Doctor. Download the 14-day trial now