Why is my finger ‘sparkling’?
When nerves are injured the part of the body they connect to can have some very strange things happen to them.
Nerves connect the part of the body to the brain: Your finger, for example, has nerves that run up to near your spine, link with other nerves in your spine then up to your brain. This signal travels so quickly that when your finger touches something your brain knows about it and so you can feel it. It tells if it is rough or smooth, hot or cold, sharp, heavy… all of those things.
So when your nerves are injured there can be problems with any or all of those feeling nerves.
Sometimes people can have loss of feeling – their finger goes all ‘numb’ (said N-uh-m)which means if they touch it on something sharp cold smooth or hot they cannot tell any of these. The finger has no feelings it is numb.
One thing that can happen to some people with nerve injury is that they can have some strange feelings in the part of the body contolled by the injured nerve: doctors call these parasthesiae (it is said like this:para-ss-these-ee-ee). These have lots of names..’pins and needles’, ‘sparkles’, ‘tingles’ but they are a feeling of prickling or tingling in your skin. They are not noramlly painful, just plain strange.
Sometimes there can be feelings which are not normal and not nice. These are called dythesiae (said Dis-these-ee-ee) and are tinglings or prickles which are not nice. There can also be pains which can be there all the time (spontaneous) or happen on if the finger is touch (evoked). These pains are called neuropathic (said nur-O-path-ic) which means they are pains from injury to nerves and luckily they are very rare for chidlren to have. Lots of adults with nerve injury get these nasty pains but children tend to only get the tingling and loss of feelings.
They can happen when there is still feeling in the finger or when the finger has lost its feeling.