Diabetic Neuropathy

Help for Diabetic Neuropathy

The number of people now being diagnosed with diabetes continues to climb, and it is being described as a pandemic. Whether you have had this disease from childhood or acquired it later on, you know the challenges that it brings. Finger pricks, medications or insulin pumps, constantly watching your diet, and trying to get enough exercise takes commitment and patience. However, if you can do it, you are much more likely to avoid serious complications like diabetic neuropathy. Still, this is one of the most common consequences of the disease, and it ends up causing much discomfort, pain and, limitation in those who have it.

How Do I Get Neuropathy?

This damage to the nerves is caused by unregulated blood sugar levels, which are often diet related. Genetic factors, autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, infections such as Lyme disease, and even environmental toxins can put you more at risk for developing this condition. When your sugar level is too high, it damages the nerve fibers – especially in your legs and feet. You may not have serious symptoms right away, but over time the decreased nerve function may lead to loss of feeling, numbness, and mild to severe pain that can alter your lifestyle. Nerves that don’t function properly can mean you won’t notice extreme heat or cold, and you may also not be aware of an injury unless you visually inspect your feet every day.

Can Diabetic Neuropathy Be Treated?

There is no known cure for this condition, so treatment methods focus on slowing down its progression and addressing the symptoms. As with so many serious diseases, your success in dealing with diabetes depends much on your own actions. You can help prevent nerve damage by exercising tight control over your sugar level, and exercising your body too!

Following a healthy diet consistently will help to maintain a safe sugar level and help keep excess weight off at the same time. Exercise will guard against high blood pressure and increase circulation in your legs and feet to keep nerves and tissues as healthy as possible. Think twice before you light that cigarette or pour yourself another drink, too, because smoking and alcohol use are added risk factors. Their use can cause damage to blood vessels and nerves, which increases your risk of infections.

There are many types of pain relievers that your physician can prescribe to help deal with the pain, and research is revealing possible help with certain nerve stimulation techniques, infrared treatments, and plasma exchange or intravenous treatments. If you are already having trouble with your legs or feet, podiatric treatment can be a life saver. Dr. Stavros Alexopoulos at My Chicago Foot Expert has the expertise to diagnose and treat diabetic complications in your feet or ankles, like sores that won’t heal and circulation problems. He can advise you on proper diet and offer massage therapy if that would be helpful for your condition. Don’t let diabetic neuropathy define your life! Call the office in Chicago today at (773) 561-8100, or use the Book Online button on the website.