Take These Steps to Prevent or Slow the Progression of Diabetic Neuropathy

Diabetes is more than just one disease. It’s a cluster of diseases that mess with the way your body processes glucose. There are several types and causes of diabetes, but it all boils down to having too much sugar in your blood. That leads to a plethora of problems, but the one you might not hear about as often is neuropathy — nerves damaged by high levels of blood sugar. And when your nerves are damaged, it hurts.

That’s where we come in. If you have diabetic neuropathy, we can help you manage your pain and even overcome it if we catch it early enough. At Metro Pain & Vein, we are pain specialists and use the latest technology and techniques to get you back to pain-free living. Diabetic neuropathy is a complex issue, and your treatment will depend on what kind you have.

Peripheral neuropathy

Fairly common among folks with diabetes, peripheral neuropathy affects about 50% of diabetics. It shows up as tingling and numbness in your extremities like your legs, arms, feet, and hands. Peripheral neuropathy responds well to blood sugar management. That means that when you get your blood sugar back to normal, your neuropathy symptoms usually subside as well.

When your peripheral neuropathy is also accompanied by pain, we can help ease it with medication. But the best way to approach this type of nerve pain is to lower your blood sugar through a proper diet. 

If you have peripheral neuropathy, make sure you:

Autonomic neuropathy

If your diabetes begins to affect the nerves in the areas of your body responsible for those autonomic functions like digestion, urination, and blood flow, you have autonomic neuropathy, and you’re among more than 30% of diabetics who suffer from the same thing. You may notice symptoms like:

Focal neuropathy

This type of neuropathy attacks single nerves rather than a group or cluster of nerves. It might be in your hands, your legs, your torso, or your head. Carpal tunnel syndrome is one of the most common forms of focal neuropathy in diabetics, affecting about 25% of them. 

In addition to managing your blood sugar (the cause of the damage), we may suggest you wear a splint to help ease your wrist pain, or we prescribe medication to reduce inflammation. 

Proximal neuropathy

Proximal neuropathy is the rarest of all the diabetic neuropathies. It affects your hip, thigh, and buttocks on one side of your body and usually doesn’t spread. The pain can be intense and can also cause weakness, wasted muscles, and loss of reflexes. More men than women experience it, but both can get it.

Although your symptoms may decrease over time, they likely won’t disappear completely.

Slowing the progression of diabetic neuropathies

Regardless of the type of neuropathy you have, the way to slow it down or stop it is the same — you must control your diabetes.

First and foremost that means controlling your blood sugar. Nothing is more important when you’re diabetic. Medications and diet are your first line of defense, so be diligent. Your nerves are at stake.

Next, you can do your best to decrease your likelihood of getting diabetic neuropathy by:

When the pain gets bad, come see us. Better yet, come see us before the pain gets bad. We’re experts in finding the source of pain and stopping it in its tracks. We understand your neuropathy and the frustrating cycle of discomfort it causes. We have 11 convenient locations to serve you, so call us or request an appointment online today. 

You Might Also Enjoy...

Radiculopathy: How Do I Know If I Have it?

Do you have radiating pain or tingling running down your arms and legs? Have you noticed weakness or less sensation in certain parts of your body? You could have a pinched nerve that’s causing radiculopathy.

Common Causes of Headaches and Ways to Treat Your Pain

Tired of struggling with chronic headaches? Are you searching for solutions to keep headaches from derailing your work or social life? Learn more about the most common headache triggers and treatments we offer to provide relief.

Recognizing the Symptoms of Sciatica

Do you have leg pain, lower back pain, or pain in your foot? Do you get a burning sensation behind one knee or hip, or a sharp, stabbing pain that makes it hard to walk? Any of these could be sciatica symptoms. Learn how to recognize them.