In addition to other issues and side effects that come with diabetes, diabetic neuropathy is a major concern for many. This is especially true as the body takes longer to heal and recover in certain circumstances. While Republic Pain Specialists cannot treat all the side effects and symptoms that come with diabetes or diabetic neuropathy, we can help with some of the related pain issues you may be experiencing.
What is Diabetic Neuropathy?
According to the Mayo Clinic, diabetic neuropathy is a side effect that can affect as many as 50% of people with diabetes, regardless of type. Increased blood sugar levels, especially over time, can lead to nerve damage. Since nerves transmit and receive information throughout the body, their damage can cause issues with various parts of the body and its functions. Additionally, high blood sugar weakens the walls of the small blood vessels that supply nerves with oxygen and nutrients, further complicating matters. This can result in problems with healing, sensation, function, and other automatic responses the body usually has. Like many other diabetes-related issues, adopting a healthy lifestyle can delay or alleviate the onset of these concerns to some extent. Unfortunately, symptoms usually develop gradually over time, so the damage may already be done by the time patients become aware of the neuropathy. This underscores the importance of managing diabetes as soon as you receive a diagnosis.
What are the Symptoms?
Diabetic neuropathy encompasses several types, each with varying symptoms. The most common issues associated with peripheral neuropathy include numbness, tingling, sharp pains, or weakness in the feet, legs, and arms. These symptoms are typically worse at night. The other three types of diabetic neuropathy present a wide range of problems, including vision issues and facial numbness, abdominal difficulties, sweating concerns, and drops in blood pressure. It's possible to have one or more types of diabetic neuropathy and experience only some of the associated symptoms. The specifics can vary greatly from patient to patient. Managing the symptoms of diabetic neuropathy can be challenging. As the symptoms progressively worsen, many individuals simply seek any form of relief they can find.
Managing Diabetic Neuropathy Pain
There are various ways to alleviate the pain caused by diabetic neuropathy. At Republic Pain Specialists, we approach each patient's needs in a multimodal, individualized manner. First and foremost, it is crucial to ensure that your diabetes is being properly managed from a clinical perspective. Additionally, collaborating with a dietitian and physical trainer to address the food and fitness aspects of diabetes management can be beneficial. Second, incorporating physical therapy and yoga into your routine may help relieve some of the symptoms of diabetic neuropathy. Lastly, for patients experiencing nerve-related issues, options such as acupuncture, therapeutic massage, and nerve blocks can provide assistance.
If you or a loved one is dealing with diabetic neuropathy pain, our team at Republic Pain Specialists is here to help. It is important to us to fully comprehend the pain you are experiencing and its impact on your life. By working together, we can create a treatment plan that is tailored to your needs and will improve your day-to-day life. Contact us today to learn more.