When diagnosed with a condition there are a few key factors that come into play such as what causes this condition, how this condition will affect one’s life and how does one treat this newly diagnosed condition. Understanding the condition of neuropathy comes with the same key factors, those that have been diagnosed with neuropathy want to know why, how and what now. Understanding is the key to empowerment and empowerment can lead to better care of one’s self which in return moves a person toward making educated choices regarding personal health.
What Is Neuropathy?
Neuropathy is a complex condition that can have an effect on the body’s nervous system. Neuropathy can be considered a collection of disorders that develop when damaged to the peripheral nervous system occurs. The peripheral nervous system refers to the part of the nervous system outside of the brain and spinal cord; when damage occurs to the nerve cells or nerve axons, it is called peripheral neuropathy. Neuropathy is a painful condition that can have an effect on an individual’s life and their ability to maintain a normal active life.
The symptoms of neuropathy are what create limitations to productivity and normal functionality. Neuropathy, simply said, is when there is a communication breakdown between the brain and spinal cord. When there is a breakdown in communication, it is if static is being heard and the nerve endings are getting mixed messages as to what they should or should not be sensing. The brain is what communicates to the sensory nerves that the burner they are about to touch is hot and the sensory nerves communicates back to the brain that they could sense through touch that the burner is too hot. When this line of communication is not working correctly, an individual has a hard time computing when something is hot or cold, terrain changes and if injury has occurred.
How Does One Attain Neuropathy?
There are several possible causes of neuropathy some of which are still unclear and are undergoing research whereas other neuropathy causes are known and are able to be treated. One of the most frustrating aspects of being diagnosed with neuropathy is that there are those cases where the medical professional is unable to clearly define what is causing neuropathy symptoms and so the root cause is unable to be treated. The following is a list of the most common causes of neuropathy.
- Alcohol Abuse
- Kidney Failure
- Vitamin Deficiency
- Traumatic Injury
- Lyme Disease
- Metabolic Disorders
- Exposure To Dangerous Toxins
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Autoimmune Diseases
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Guillain-Barre Syndrome
Out of the possible causes of neuropathy diabetes is by far the most common cause of this miserable condition because uncontrolled blood sugar or glucose levels can lead to the damage of nerve cells resulting in the loss of feeling and the start of odd and uncomfortable sensations.
Life Altering Condition
Neuropathy symptoms make it extremely difficult to walk and operate on a normal basis. The inflicted areas become overly sensitive to touch and pressure, therefore nerve pain can become so intense that neuropathic sufferers can make the mistake of becoming inactive in hopes of relieving their neuropathy pain and lessening the symptoms felt by staying off their feet. Those that have been diagnosed with neuropathy often complain of the following symptoms and sensations.
- Needle-like pinching
- Muscle weakness
- Loss of coordination
- Sensitivity to touch
- Dull ache
- Involuntary muscle spasms
Symptoms such as the ones listed create limitations in movement making it difficult for the neuropathic patient to perform simple tasks like walking, standing and even washing dishes or holding a small child. Unless treatment is implemented a neuropathic patient could find his or herself completely immobile and facing the possible idea of amputation. Neuropathy treatments should be discussed with a medical professional before trying or attempting.
Neuropathy treatment options range from the use of prescription medications and or the practice of holistic methods like acupuncture, hypnosis, relaxations techniques or herbal supplements.
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