Are you one of the 20 million people in the United States that suffers from the pain and dysfunction of peripheral neuropathy? Maybe you are having symptoms, but haven’t been diagnosed. Do you experience any of the following: numbness, tingling, weakness, pain, sensitivity to touch, lack of coordination, unusual sweating, bowel or digestive issues, lightheadedness? Peripheral neuropathy symptoms will vary depending on the nerves that are affected. Sensory, motor and autonomic nerves all perform different roles. Treating these symptoms follows diagnosing what is triggering them. Once you and your caregiver arrive at a verdict you can start to discuss ways to eliminate the cause and treat your symptoms. Learn what you can be doing to help prevent symptoms and to help treat them from home.
One of the first questions patients ask when they are diagnosed with peripheral neuropathy is what caused it, followed by how do we treat it? For the first question, the Foundation for Peripheral Neuropathy, (FPN), reports that 60 percent of neuropathy cases stem from diabetes; 23 percent are idiopathic–they don’t know what causes them; 10 percent are chemo-induced; 2 percent stem from HIV/AIDS; 5 percent are from other causes. Neuropathy is a known side effect of certain medications, especially in treatment medications for HIV/AIDS and medications in chemotherapy used to combat cancer.
To treat peripheral neuropathy effectively, the first priority is to discover any contributing causes such as: injury, toxin exposure, medication-related toxicity, infection, vitamin deficiencies, hormonal deficiencies, autoimmune disorders, or compression. Acting quickly to discover the cause of your symptoms is imperative to avoid chronic issues. Peripheral nerves can regenerate axons so as long as the nerve cell itself has not died, which can offer functional recovery over time. Discovering and treating an underlying condition can give the neuropathy the ability to resolve on its own when the nerves recover or regenerate.
For thousands of people, they don’t have a choice but to take symptoms seriously. Nerve disorder prevents them from functioning and living the way they want to. Untreated nerve disorders can trigger a wide variety of problems that can be chronic. Undermanaged diabetic peripheral neuropathy (DPN) is the number one cause of nontraumatic lower limb amputations in the United States. This equates to roughly 54,000 diabetics that have amputations each year and an estimated annual cost to treat diabetes-related chronic complications at $58 Billion. While these numbers are eye-opening, the sad truth is that the FPN reports that 75 percent of the amputations are preventable.
Your caregiver can offer you several in-office neuropathy treatments to reduce your pain. Patients dealing with permanent damage or chronic conditions that won’t go away often find regular electrostimulation and massage therapy keeps the symptoms under control without medication. Chiropractic adjustment, physical therapy, and inflammation injections can also make a huge difference if you are suffering. Nutritional assessments can help you discover if your symptoms stem from a severe nutrient deficiency.
One of the biggest ways you can treat your neuropathy symptoms at home is to create healthy lifestyle habits. Consider incorporating the following habits for your neuropathy symptoms:
The more engaged you are in your self-care efforts, the more success you and your caregiver will have with you neuropathy symptoms. Strong communication between yourself and your doctor when anything concerns you is vital for keeping chronic conditions at bay. Incorporate healthy lifestyle habits to help you prevent more serious forms of neuropathy from occurring. Your active role can encourage your body to heal so you can get back to healthy living!