Neuropathy Feet and the Causes, Symptoms and Treatment Options
Neuropathy feet may develop when there is damage to the nerves located in the feet. The usual factors that cause this condition include alcoholism, hormonal problems, metabolic disorders, and vitamin deficiencies. Some types of blood disorders may also lead to neuropathy. Neuropathy feet symptoms include pain and burning sensations in the feet, loss of balance, and difficulty walking. The responsiveness of the feet to various sensations also decreases so people suffering from neuropath do not realize when they develop blisters or sores that may lead to infections.
What causes neuropathy feet?
Diabetes is probably one of the most common causes of neuropathy in the feet. Over time, the nerves in your feet become damaged due to abnormally high blood sugar levels. People suffering from diabetes may also experience constrictions in their blood vessels, thus leading to diabetic neuropathy. Additional causes include the lack of certain vitamins such as B6, B12, and E. These vitamins are essential for promoting proper nerve function so deficiencies may affect the nerves of the feet and develop the symptoms of neuropathy feet.
Alcoholism may also result in foot neuropathy. People who have become dependent to alcohol tend to have poor nutrition and vitamin deficiencies. Excessive alcohol intake can also cause direct damage to the nerves in your feet. On the other hand, entrapment neuropathy feet refer to a condition caused by the compression of nerves due to trauma or conditions such as arthritis or flat feet. Benign and malignant tumors that exert pressure on the nerves may damage them or cause inflammation in the surrounding nerve tissues.
Depending on what caused the condition, the damage in the nerves of the feet may not be reversible. The methods used for curing neuropathy feet only aim to diagnose the underlying cause and prevent the condition from getting worse. Diabetics who suffer from neuropathy can try keeping their blood sugar under control through regular exercise, diet, and insulin. Certain vitamins may also be recommended for people who developed neuropathy because of nutritional deficiencies. In worse conditions, surgery may become necessary to decompress constricted nerves and improve blood flow.
Diabetic neuropathy feet
Diabetic neuropathy refers to the nerve damage caused by high blood sugar levels. While this condition may occur anywhere in the body, it usually occurs in the arms, toes, hands, and feet. Aside from high levels of glucose in the blood, other factors may also contribute to diabetic neuropathy feet. These factors include the high levels of fat in the blood, low insulin levels, and the duration of diabetes. Experts also estimate that about 70% of people suffering from diabetes may suffer from some type of neuropathy.
Also known as peripheral neuropathy feet or distal symmetric neuropathy, this condition is believed to be common among patients who had diabetes for 25 years of longer. Caused by prolonged high levels of glucose in the blood, diabetic neuropathy may damage the walls of blood vessels as well as certain capillaries. This may deprive nerves of the oxygen they need and impair their ability to function well. Inflammation from autoimmune disorders and mechanical injuries such as the carpal tunnel syndrome may also increase your risk of developing this condition.
Any disorder that damages blood vessels connected to the nerves may cause neuropathy feet. Doctors also consider habits such as smoking and excessive alcohol intake when checking the probable cause of this condition. Its symptoms may start appearing gradually over the years. Before it affects the arms and hands, it may cause pain in the feet, legs, and toes. The most common neuropathy feet symptoms include numbness, tingly, and a prickly feeling in the feet and toes. Patients may also experience decreased sensitivity to pain so they tend to develop sores and blisters that go unnoticed.
People who are suffering from diabetic neuropathy feet should also recognize other symptoms such as cramps, loss of coordination, and dizziness or weakness when standing. Certain changes in the gait may also occur because of numbness or deformities such as hammertoes. Symptoms tend to worsen at night as well. Anyone who has diabetic neuropathy needs to take particular care of his feet by washing and inspecting it for blisters or cuts on a daily basis. They should also ask a medical professional to examine their feet annually so that infections can be treated before they travel to the bone and force patients to consider amputation.
Now that you already know the common causes and symptoms of neuropathy feet, you should start being more familiar with effective treatment methods. For any treatment plan to become successful, patients are required to adopt a healthy lifestyle and take certain drugs depending on the extent of the damage in your nerves. Diabetic neuropathy usually occurs in patients who fail to control their blood sugar so it is best to undergo physical therapy and electric nerve stimulation to prevent its symptoms from worsening.
Neuropathy treatment usually differs based on the type and extent of the nerve damage. Diabetics who are suffering from autonomic neuropathy may experience changes in involuntary actions such as sexual function and digestion. Others may also experience peripheral neuropathy, a condition wherein the nerves that allow sensation in areas of the body have sustained damage. Since neuropathy is mainly caused by damage in the nerves, treatment plans usually involve the need to manage the symptoms caused by nerve damage.
When treating neuropathy feet, patients who have digestive problems may need antibiotics and certain dietary changes. Those with high blood pressure levels may also need medication for controlling blood pressure. Usually, physicians also prescribe medication used for relieving the pain caused by damage in peripheral nerves. Different kinds of neuropathy may respond differently to various forms of treatment so doctors need to diagnose the cause of the condition before recommending any type of treatment plan.
Physical therapy may also be used together with other medications when curing diabetic neuropathy. Massage and stretching exercises can help relieve the pain caused by damages in the nerves. Alternative therapies such as acupuncture may also benefit diabetics suffering from peripheral nerve damage. With the right treatment plan and pain management techniques, you can easily overcome the painful and distressing symptoms of neuropathy feet.
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