If you're suffering from peripheral neuropathy, you might be wondering what kind of treatment options are available to you. Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the best course of treatment will vary depending on the underlying cause of your condition. However, there are some treatments that are commonly used to help relieve the symptoms of peripheral neuropathy. Read on to learn more about effective treatment options and sources for peripheral neuropathy relief.
What is Neuropathy?
Neuropathy is a general term used to describe a variety of disorders that affect the nervous system. Neuropathy can be caused by physical injury, infection, or disease. It can also be the result of exposure to certain toxins.
The most common type of neuropathy is diabetic neuropathy, which affects up to 50% of people with diabetes. Other common types include peripheral neuropathy (affecting the nerves in the arms and legs), carpal tunnel syndrome (affecting the wrist and hand), and postherpetic neuralgia (a complication of shingles).
Causes of Neuropathy
There are many potential causes of neuropathy, including both physical and emotional trauma, infection, and autoimmune disease. In some cases, the cause is unknown.
Physical trauma (such as a car accident) can damage nerves directly, or it can lead to inflammation that puts pressure on nerves. Emotional trauma (such as chronic stress) can also cause nerve damage.
Infections (such as Lyme disease or shingles) can attack nerves directly, or they can cause inflammation that puts pressure on nerves. Autoimmune diseases (such as rheumatoid arthritis or lupus) can also damage nerves indirectly by attacking the body's tissues.
The most common cause of neuropathy is diabetes mellitus, which damages the nerves by causing them to be deprived of nutrients. Other causes include alcoholism, vitamin B12 deficiency, and exposure to certain toxins (such as mercury or pesticides).
There are a variety of neuropathy symptoms that can develop as a result of nerve damage. The most common neuropathy symptoms include numbness, tingling, and pain in the affected area. In some cases, neuropathy can also cause weakness, loss of balance, and problems with coordination. Depending on the severity of the nerve damage, these symptoms may be temporary, or they may persist long-term.
Neuropathy symptoms can have a significant impact on quality of life. The pain, numbness, and tingling associated with neuropathy can make everyday activities difficult or impossible to perform. In addition, the fatigue that often accompanies neuropathy can make it difficult to maintain an active lifestyle.
Treatment for Neuropathy in Legs and Feet
Some specific treatments for success with neuropathy in the legs and feet include the following:
• Medication. Pain relievers, anti-seizure drugs, and antidepressants may be prescribed to help ease nerve pain. Topical treatments, such as creams or ointments containing capsaicin (a substance found in chili peppers), can also provide relief from pain.
• Physical therapy. Physical therapy may be recommended to help improve blood circulation and reduce nerve compression.
• Controlling your blood sugar. If your peripheral neuropathy is caused by diabetes, tightly controlling your blood sugar levels can help prevent further damage to the nerves.
• Alternative treatments. Some alternative neuropathy treatments include acupuncture, massage, and electrical stimulation.
The Effects of Living with Neuropathy
One of the things people don't think about when they are diagnosed with neuropathy is the impact it can have on their mental health. Neuropathy can be a very isolating condition, and it can be hard to stay positive when you're dealing with chronic pain. It's important to find ways to cope with the anxiety and depression that can come along with neuropathy. Support groups, therapy, and medication can all help.
Neuropathy impacts daily life in multiple ways. Neuropathy can make it difficult to do simple tasks like walking or cooking. It can also be hard to stay employed if your job requires physical activity.
There are many resources available to help people with neuropathy manage their condition and live as normal a life as possible. Support groups, physical therapy, and assistive devices can all help.
If you or someone you know has neuropathy, don't hesitate to reach out for help. There are many resources available to help people manage this condition.
If you're living with peripheral neuropathy, talk to a doctor at Oregon Medical Centers about what treatment options are available to you. With the right treatment plan, you can manage your symptoms and enjoy a good quality of life.