Posts Tagged ‘diabetic neuropathy’
Diabetic neuropathy is a nerve disorder that is triggered as a side effect of diabetes. This condition can spread throughout the body, though at first individuals may have no symptoms. Eventually symptoms such as numbness, tingling or pain may appear, often in the hands and feet, but sex organs, digestive tract and heart can experience this type of nerve damage as well.
Causes of Diabetic Neuropathy
There are a variety of factors which can play into the development of diabetic neuropathy. Understanding these risks can help individuals find adequate treatment. Damage to the blood vessels responsible for carrying nutrients to the nerves, high blood glucose, a long duration of diabetes, high blood fat levels and low levels of insulin all increase your risk of developing neuropathy. Inflammation of the nerves, alcohol use, smoking and some inherited traits that contribute to nerve damage can also increase this condition.
Top Treatments of Diabetic Neuropathy
The first goal of any treatment plan should be to return blood glucose levels to a normal range. This is essential to prevent any further nerve damage.
- Exercise is commonly recommended for those that are starting to experience symptoms of diabetic neuropathy. This can help to maintain glucose levels while strengthening blood flow that can help to pass nutrients to this part of the body.
- Proper diet is also essential to maintaining proper glucose levels. Monitoring glucose levels after meals can help to determine if your eating habits are contributing to your condition. Avoiding sugary foods and consuming regular small meals can help to keep glucose levels steady to prevent damage to the nerves.
- Medications can be used to help reduce the pain associated with diabetic neuropathy. This may include opioids, antidepressants or anticonvulsants as necessary to reduce symptoms. Specifically, pregabalin and duloxetine are approved by the Food and Drug Administration to manage the symptoms of diabetic neuropathy.
- In some cases diabetic neuropathy may affect the skin, particularly on the feet. Creams can be applied to these areas as a means of controlling the symptoms. Lidopain or Lidoderm can be applied to the feet as a means of relieving pain in these areas. Antioxidants such as lipoic acid or evening primrose oil can be applied to these areas to help reduce symptoms.
- If the body is sensitive to touch due to the nerve damage that has occurred, it may be necessary to engage in physical therapy. Acupuncture, magnetic or electrical nerve therapies have been found to be helpful in stimulating the nerves to return the normal sensations to areas that have been damaged by diabetic neuropathy. A bed cradle can also be worn at night to keep the blankets off of legs that are sensitive due to nerve damage.
Regardless of what type of therapy is used for diabetic neuropathy it is essential that you check in with your neuropathy doctor regularly. This will help to ensure that you can keep on top of your disease and make any necessary changes to prevent further damage to areas that are suffering the symptoms of this condition.
Dr. Richard Jacoby at the Scottsdale Neuropathy Institute is an expert in diabetic neuropathy treatment. This includes medications, laser treatment, stem cell therapy and the Dellon Decompression Surgery. Patients come from all over the Southwest to see Dr. Jacoby due to his expertise and hefty success rates.
Call (480) 994-5977 today for more information and scheduling!
Don’t believe that every condition is life threatening or something you are stuck dealing with for the rest of your life. In fact, many can be treated effectively and quickly with a change in your lifestyle or even some new methods or medications.
The world is improving the treatments available for neuropathy, and you should be willing to do whatever is necessary to improve your health through these therapies and the advice of your neuropathy doctor. Before you make any health changes, consult with your physician to learn if you should consider new treatment for your current condition.
The Pain Starts Here
The cause of peripheral neuropathy varies in each patient, but the most common cause is diabetes. Not only will it cause the patient to struggle with blood sugar levels and overall health, but it can cause pain and tingling in the body extremities. From the fingers to toes, the pain can be strong or intermittent, severe to just annoying at any given time of the day.
The cause can be the high levels of blood sugar affecting the nerves, and in many cases, since the legs carry the majority of nerves in the body, they are greatly affected. The legs can become tingly and unfeeling and in some severe cases, they are amputated. This can be avoided.
Pain from Morning to Night
Neuropathy in diabetics is frequently described as pain throughout the body. A diabetic will feel a sharp or tingling pain that keeps its own schedule and doesn’t’ care if you are trying to sleep or enjoy a meal. That is probably the most difficult part of neuropathy, in that it doesn’t come at night only, or just after a long walk. A person can never plan for neuropathy.
If you experience this type of pain and have diabetes Type I or Type II, consult with a top neuropathy specialist right away. In spite of feeling skeptical about what it could be, test yourself for neuropathy by pricking each toe, parts of your foot, and your individual fingers on a daily basis. If they are unfeeling, talk to your doctor about treatments and what can be done to stop further nerve damage.
Treating the Pain
Many innovative treatments are coming on the market for diabetic neuropathy, and because the pathophysiology of the condition is different for each person, you should be willing to try a variety of options. What will work for one patient may not work for another and not being open to possibilities will leave you with pain, so why not try? Here are some sure-fire ways to ease the pain:
- Exercise. Getting the blood flowing and improved circulation will give you the added benefit of the cessation of nerve damage. By stopping further nerve damage, you will be able to work toward recovery rather than just living with the pain.
- Better diet. Anytime you can regulate your blood sugar and keep it steady, you will see an improvement in your pain levels. The blood can flow freely and the nerves will be able to feed on the proper diet.
- Pain Medications. Even if you don’t like to take these types of medicines, they can cause the nerves to relax and stop hurting, as well as stop the further damage. When the nerves are calm, they are less likely to cause pain.
- Electrotherapy. While this may seem like a drastic step, if you can stop the pain messages from being sent to the brain, the pain can actually stop for the time being. It can be interrupted and struggle to regain the pain signals and this can provide relief.
If you have diabetes but don’t have the symptoms of neuropathy, don’t assume you will never have it. Up to 30% of those with diabetes will develop symptomatic neuropathy.
Keep a close watch on your extremities and how they function. If you notice anything out of the ordinary, it could be the onset of neuropathy. Scottsdale Neuropathy Institute offers top treatments for neuropathy. Dr. Jacoby has decades of experience and can help you obtain relief.
Call (480) 994-5977 today!
Like most conditions, there are actions you can take in order to improve your life on a daily basis. From more exercise to eating healthier, taking these small steps in your routine can greatly improve your chances of decreasing pain and long term body damage. If you have a condition, such as diabetic neuropathy, this is especially true. In fact, you can eat and exercise your way to better health. With each healthy food you eat and each mile you walk, you are decreasing the chance of neuropathy progression.
Causes of Neuropathy
Your body is struggling to keep up with the diabetic problems associated with this chronic condition. Whether you have Type I or Type II diabetes, you have to monitor your every bite of food and drink you choose. This is difficult enough, but did you know if you neglect the blood sugars in your body, more damage can actually occur in the form of nerve damage and neuropathy?
Nerve damage associated with neuropathy can be devastating to your body and even your life. The pain is severe, and the damage it can cause will be long-term and may be the reason for an amputation or other drastic measures. On the other hand, you can work hard and be disciplined to avoid certain things. You can be in control of your diabetes and the neuropathy that can sometimes be a symptom of the disease.
Dos and Don’ts
Your Neuropathy doctor has probably already put you on a strict diet to ease the problems of the diabetes, but did you know there are specific dos and don’ts for the neuropathy as well? Here are some quick tips for a proper diet to ease the problems that come with diabetes and neuropathy:
- Maintain blood sugar levels. Limiting sugar and fats is the first step as well as more frequently eating healthy meals and snacks. Don’t let your blood sugars drop drastically, and eat plenty of healthy foods like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
- Never skip a meal. This allows your blood sugar levels to drop when you miss meals, and you’ll have the symptoms of sweating and shakiness.
- Consider taking a B12 vitamin to ease the symptoms of neuropathy. As a B12 deficiency can worse the symptoms of tingling, numbness, and pain, injectable or oral B12 is a good idea. Red meat, dairy, fish, eggs, and poultry all are great sources for B12, but you may consider taking a supplement with this important vitamin to ensure you are getting all the necessary amounts.
- Avoid excess alcohol. This can make symptoms worse and wreak havoc on your blood sugar levels.
- Skip the refined grains. Whole grains are much better for regulating blood sugar levels and keeping neuropathy symptoms at bay for the time being.
- Increase your Omega-3 and Omega-6 intake. These nutrients will help ease the pain of neuropathic pain in your body and keep your healthy fat levels where they should be.
- Talk to your Arizona neuropathy doctor about more dietary ideas. They will more than likely have many ways to promote healthy sugars and manage your pain.
Your body wants to help heal the problems associated with diabetes on its own, so it will give you signs and warnings if you need to increase your food intake or your vitamin intake. Don’t ignore these signs or the symptoms of deeper problems, such as neuropathy. Anytime you aren’t sure of what you’re feeling such as increased pain or tingling in a new area, let your doctor know. By keeping a journal of the pain and the food you are eating, you can make the connection between what works for your body and what doesn’t seem to make a difference.
The top neuropathy treatment clinic in the Southwest is Scottsdale Neuropathy Institute. Dr. Richard Jacoby has been providing stellar neuropathy treatments for over 20 years, both medical and interventional. For the best, most comprehensive peripheral and diabetic neuropathy treatment available, call SNI today at (480) 994-5977 today!
While peripheral neuropathy damages the body’s communication network and interferes with the vital connections of the nerves throughout the body, there can be a wide array of symptoms with each nerve that is damaged. Depending on the root cause of peripheral neuropathy, the messages that are sent through the nerves could be distorted, interrupted, or disconnected from the brain to the rest of the body. The nerves can be completely or partially severed, compressed, crushed, stretched, or detached from the spinal cord.
Peripheral Neuropathy Signs
Depending on the type of damage to the nerves, and how many are involved, there can be signs of peripheral neuropathy as it slowly progresses, or it can suddenly appear and progress rapidly. There are different forms of neuropathy with different signs such as:
- Mononeuropathies, which occurs when only one nerve is damaged, but is less likely to occur
- Polyneuropathy will occur more often, and there are multiple nerves that are damaged, which can affect all limbs.
- Mononeuritis multiplex occurs when two or more nerves are affected that are isolated in different areas of the body.
- With polyneuropathy, individual cells of the nerve that are furthest from the spinal cord and brain begin to malfunction first. Generally it begins in both feet and gradually progresses up the legs. Then it can be felt in the arms, hands, and fingers as it progresses to the center of the body.
Symptoms of Peripheral Neuropathy
With the many different areas and nerves of the body that can be affected, there are many different symptoms that can be experienced. With chronic forms of peripheral neuropathy, symptoms may begin subtly and slowly progress. Acute forms of neuropathy can cause symptoms to suddenly appear and rapidly progress and the nerves that are damaged will generally take awhile to slowly heal.
Symptoms that are related to the type of nerve that is affected can be noticed over several days, weeks, or even years. Many symptoms can include uncontrollable muscle twitching, muscle loss, painful cramps, sharp pains, bone degeneration, and changes with hair, nails, and skin. More specific symptoms can include:
- Damage to the sensory nerves – This can cause the loss of the ability to feel a vibration or touch, which can result in numbness, particularly in the feet, and hands. Many people explain the feeling of wearing gloves or socks when they experience the symptoms, even though they aren’t. Damage to the sensory fibers can also cause a loss in reflexes, as well as losing position sense, which affects the ability to walk, or maintain balance with the eyes closed.
- Autonomic nerve damage – This can be life threatening and may require emergency care when symptoms like impaired breathing or an irregular heart beat occur. Other symptoms can include heat intolerance, unable to sweat normally, cannot maintain a safe blood pressure, lightheadedness, dizziness, or fainting when sitting or standing.
Types of Treatment
One of the goals with treating peripheral neuropathy is to first manage the condition that is causing the neuropathy. If the cause can be corrected, then often times the neuropathy will improve on its own. It is also recommended to adopt a healthier lifestyle, such as eating healthy and being physically active. The other goal is to relieve the patient of the painful symptoms they are experiencing. This is generally done with medication that can relieve the pain, and may include:
- Over the counter pain relievers – These can relieve pain and reduce inflammation with milder symptoms, but with symptoms that are more severe, you may be prescribed painkillers.
- Anti-seizure medications – Doctors will also often prescribe anti-seizure medications to relieve nerve pain, but they can cause dizziness and drowsiness.
- Antidepressants – These are effective medications with relieving pain by interfering in the chemical processes between the brain and spinal cord.
- Laser Treatment
- Stem Cell Treatments
- Surgery – Dellon Decompression Surgery
There are also types of therapies that can help relieve symptoms, such as electrical nerve stimulation through electrodes that are placed on the skin. A plasma exchange has also been found to be beneficial for those with particular inflammatory conditions by suppressing activity in the immune system.
The top neuropathy specialists in the Southwest are Scottsdale Neuropathy Institute with Dr. Richard Jacoby. Dr. Jacoby has been working with neuropathy patients for over 20 years providing both nonoperative and operative management. No foot and ankle specialist offers such comprehensive, effective treatments!
Call (480) 994-5977 today.
As if living with diabetes wasn’t difficult enough, many sufferers also have a variety of other health problems resulting from their diabetes. Even with the best healthcare and healthy practices, problems like nerve damage can result from a long-term battle with diabetes. While it may not seem to appear right away after the diabetes diagnosis, it is a real problem affecting many people throughout the world and it is not only painful but damaging to their bodies.
In order to cope with neuropathy, medications have been developed to ease the pain and attempt to mitigate the nerves being destroyed completely. About half of the people diagnosed with diabetes have some form of neuropathy, the nerve damage caused by this disease. It can range from serious and debilitating pain to just intermittent pain throughout the day.
Causes of Neuropathy
The human body is full of blood vessels and the tiny ones can be damaged by excess blood glucose building up and causing injury to the walls of the vessels. This usually happens in the legs as there are many vessels in this area of the body. From the large ones carrying blood to your feet, to the smaller ones that are sensitive to the changes caused by changes in temperature and touch, the neuropathy caused by diabetes can be very painful.
Only nerves outside of the brain and spinal cord are affected by neuropathy, so no damage is found in the central nervous system. There are a variety of causes for neuropathy, but the most common are:
Symptoms of Neuropathy
Those with diabetes can not only suffer from the hassles of daily insulin checks and injections but also the pain caused by neuropathy. Neuropathy is a condition that exudes painful days and nights for the person suffering from it. It generally includes:
- Numbness and tingling – A gradual numbness and tingling in the hands and feet can also spread to the legs and arms. The pain can range from a tingling to a sharp sensation or jabbing sharpness. It can take your breath away, or it can leave you unable to walk or move for hours at a time.
- Changes in the skin, hair, and nails
- Coordination difficulties – You may experience a lack of coordination or muscle weakness and in the more severe cases, paralysis is a possibility.
- Heat intolerance
- Digestive problems
- Changes in blood pressure.
Treatment Options for Neuropathy
With neuropathy, there is always an option for a decrease in the overall pain a patient is experiencing. The actual ability to cure the neuropathy will depend on how severe it has become. If left untreated, neuropathy can be difficult to reverse, and the symptoms can be treated but not cured. If caught and treated early, the prognosis is much more positive.
When the cause is unregulated blood sugars, simply fixing that imbalance can ease the pain of diabetic neuropathy. In other situations where the pain is caused by a harmful toxin, by removing that toxin from the patient and avoiding it, the pain can be eradicated. As with any health problem, prevention is the best medicine.
Proper diabetic nutrition is crucial to decreasing the pain from this nerve damage and to also take excellent care of your extremities. Also, neuropathy usually starts in the fingers or toes so a diabetic patient should frequently check circulation to ensure this isn’t happening to them without their knowledge.
Some Practical Tips when Dealing with Nerve Pain
Proper nutrition and a healthy lifestyle go a long way to prevent long term damage caused by any number of health problems. From maintaining a healthy weight to the cessation of smoking, every positive step you make towards health will bring about benefits for the rest of your life. Be sure to get regular doctor check-ups and always consult with a doctor if you are having any unusual symptoms, as they could be a sign of something more serious.
The top neuropathy specialist in the Southwest is Scottsdale Neuropathy Institute with Dr. Richard Jacoby. With over 20 years of top neuropathy treatments that are comprehensive including both medical and surgical, amazing success rates are seen. Patients are seen from all over the Southwest.
Call (480) 994-5977 for more information and scheduling today!
Those who suffer from diabetes are often at a higher risk for developing diabetic neuropathy. This is when nerves are damaged that transmit vital information throughout the body, like feeling pain or controlling muscles and organs. Although there are many ways that diabetes can cause damage to the body’s nerves, a high blood sugar level for an extended period of time seems to be related to them all. Most types of nerve damage from diabetes can be painful, but in many cases the pain isn’t considered to be severe.
The Signs and Symptoms of Diabetic Neuropathy
With the different types of neuropathy and nerves that can be affected, there can be a wide range of symptoms that people experience with diabetic neuropathy. Some of those that do have nerve damage will not experience any symptoms, while others will.
Generally, the beginning signs of diabetic neuropathy will include tingling, numbness, or pain in both feet. Symptoms can often be minor at first, and in mild cases they can even go unnoticed over several years. The symptoms of diabetic neuropathy will vary and depends on the nerves that are affected with the type of neuropathy.
Types of Neuropathy
The four forms of diabetic neuropathy that affect different functions are peripheral neuropathy, autonomic neuropathy, proximal neuropathy, and focal neuropathy. The different symptoms of each form of neuropathy can include:
- Peripheral neuropathy – This type occurs most often, and generally affects the legs and feet first. Possible symptoms can be numbness or inability to feel pain, burning or tingling feeling, sharp pains, difficulty walking due to muscle weakness, pain when standing or walking, or severe issues with the foot like infections, ulcers, joint pain, or deformities.
- Autonomic neuropathy – This form will usually affect the digestive system, but problems can also occur with the heart, lungs, intestines, eyes, and sex organs. The damaged nerves in this system can cause bladder problems with constant infections, diarrhea or constipation, nausea and vomiting, increased heart rate, blood pressure problems, inability to regulate body temperature, difficulty swallowing, and many other types of symptoms throughout the body.
- Proximal neuropathy – This is more common with older adults and those who suffer from type 2 diabetes. Proximal neuropathy will generally cause pain on one side of the body, and it can be felt in the hips, thighs, legs, or buttocks. It can also cause weakness in the legs and the need of assistance to stand up from a sitting position.
- Focal neuropathy – This form can suddenly appear and progress quickly with specific nerves. This will usually occur in the torso, head, or legs, which can cause pain and weakness in muscles. Other symptoms may include severe pains in specific areas, abdominal or chest pain, eye pain or double vision, or possibly one side of the face becomes paralyzed.
Treatments for Diabetic Neuropathy
There are currently no known cures for diabetic neuropathy, but treatment will focus on slowing down the progression of the disease, relieving the pain, restoring any lost functions, and managing the complications. To slow progression, the blood sugar level is constantly monitored and kept within the targeted range. This may also cause the symptoms you are currently experiencing to improve. Other methods used to slow down damage of the nerves is to avoid alcohol, stop smoking, maintain a healthy eating plan, physical activity, or by maintaining a healthy weight.
At the Scottsdale Neuropathy Institute, Dr. Jacoby has been successfully treating individuals with diabetic neuropathy for over two decades. Each patient’s treatment is individualized for the best results.
To relieve nerve pain there are several medications that can be used, but they will not always work for everyone, and in some cases the side effects can be worse than the symptoms. Usually over the counter medications can relieve some minor pain and inflammation, but in many cases prescription medications like opioids, anti-depressants, anti-seizure medication, or a lidocaine patch will be prescribed.
Along with medications, doctors will generally recommend physical therapies, as well as alternative therapies like acupuncture and yoga, maybe even laser treatment.
Dr. Jacoby has also performed over 2500 Dellon Decompression surgeries. This procedure is designed to increase blood flow and has prevented the need for an amputation in ALL of those undergoing the procedure!
To receive the best treatment available for your diabetic neuropathy with a a world class expert in all types of neuropathy treatment, call the Scottsdale Neuropathy Institute today at (480) 994-5977!
A person with diabetes is prone to foot problems. Poor circulation, neuropathy and decreased sensitivity can all lead to problems in the lower extremities, including the foot and toes. Proper foot care is essential for those with diabetes, in order to prevent problems later on in life.
Foot problems commonly occur in people with diabetes. These problems can become serious if they are not cared for. Nerve damage may result in a person not being able to feel cuts, abrasions or ulcers that develop on the foot. Also, when there is damage to the nervous system, a person with diabetes may not be able to produce normal levels of oils and sweat that keep the skin lubricated. Sores may develop easily as the skin becomes more susceptible to breaking down.
Diabetic Foot Care
Treatment at home or by a podiatrist is necessary for people who have been diagnosed with diabetes. The foot is more prone to injury and should be examined daily for problems. Proper examination starts at home and includes:
- A thorough foot examination – daily. If you have trouble looking at the bottom and sides of your feet on a daily basis, it is recommended that you seek care from a podiatrist who is experienced in seeing patients with diabetes. If you suspect an injury or witness an ulcer or wound that is not healing on your foot, seek medical attention right away.
- Keep the nails trimmed. Toenail trimming is essential for diabetic foot care and safety. It is important to trim the nails straight across and file the edges to eliminate any sharp areas. If you are unable to trim your toenails, a podiatrist can help you with this task.
- Keep the paths clear. This means that any obstacles that could cause you to trip in your home or porch need to be removed. Loose cords, lamps, stands and overall clutter should be moved so that you are not at risk of falling or injuring your feet.
- Wear proper shoes and footwear. Footwear includes socks, slippers and shoes. If you wear slippery socks in the house, you may be prone to injury. Rubber bottomed socks are great for offering a no-slip surface while in the home. Roomy shoes that do not rub against the sides of the feet are also recommended for people with diabetes. The friction can contribute to wound development.
- Blood sugar control. Your doctor can help you keep your blood sugar levels under control, which in turn lessen the risk of developing nerve damage. If you have questions about blood sugar and diabetic foot care, see your podiatrist today for a proper assessment.
The Scottsdale Neuropathy Institute can help you achieve pain relief with your diabetic neuropathy. Dr. Richard Jacoby has been a nationally renowned podiatrist in Arizona helping patients achieve pain relief for over 20 years. Patients are seen from all over the Southwest, and treatment is available including conservative options and surgical intervention such as the Dellon decompression. Call (480) 994-5977 for help today.
When there is a lack of blood flow and circulation is impaired from the heart to the foot, a condition known as ischemic foot may arise. Arterial insufficiency may occur due to a blood clot, cholesterol build up in the main artery or injury to the artery.
Ischemic foot means that there is not enough blood flow reaching the foot and providing the area with oxygen and nutrients needed to operate and function properly. The result can be extremely painful and cause the affected individual a lot of problems. Mobility problems, skin integrity disorders and even tissue death may occur due to the lack of circulation and blood flow to the foot.
Diagnosis of Ischemic Foot
Early symptoms of ischemic foot may include discoloration of the skin, cramping of the foot and toe muscles when walking, and extremely cold feet that are difficult to warm up. Later symptoms, after the condition has progressed, may include ulceration and dying skin. Gangrene and severe infection may result from the decreased blood flow in the foot.
Your Phoenix foot doctor will use a series of tests to help diagnose ischemic foot. A physical examination, arterial Doppler testing, and x-rays may be needed to determine the severity of the problem.
Treatment for Ischemic Foot
The earlier the condition is diagnosed, the earlier it can be treated. When an ischemic foot problem is treated early, the patient has a better chance of improvement.
During the early stages of the condition, your podiatrist in Phoenix may recommend walking exercises to improve circulation. Protective shoes may be necessary to prevent friction and rubbing against the skin. When excessive rubbing occurs, ulcers and skin wounds may occur. Medications are also recommended for improved blood flow to the foot.
When the condition has advanced, more aggressive treatment may be required to eliminate the painful symptoms and improve blood flow to the feet. Your foot and ankle doctor may refer you to a vascular specialist who can work with your condition and design an effective treatment plan. If surgery is required to remove a blood clot, further evaluation may be required.
Your podiatrist will work wit you to improve circulation and prevent serious problems from occurring. Serious problems that can arise if treatment is not received include infected ulcerations on the skin and tissue death. In the event that tissue death is severe, amputation could be the end result. It is important to see a podiatrist concerning your ischemic foot problems and have the condition evaluated and treated.
Scottsdale Neuropathy Institute provides first rate treatment to those suffering from painful feet due to neuropathy and other conditions. For the best diabetic neuropathy and peripheral neuropathy treatment in the Southwest, call (480) 994-5977.
Neuropathy and other blood vessel diseases can increase the risk of developing foot ulcers. Patients with diabetes are prone to developing neuropathy. When sensation is lost in the feet, sores, cuts, abrasions and ulcers may go unnoticed. Serious ulcers can develop on the foot if the area is not properly treated.
What causes diabetic foot problems?
The National Institute of Diabetes reports that over half of all non-traumatic amputations of the lower limbs are a direct result of people with diabetes. Most of the cases can be prevented if proper podiatric care was received.
To prevent the risk of serious foot problems developing, the National Institute of Diabetes recommends that people with diabetes receive proper foot care and inspect their feet on a regular basis.
How to prevent diabetic foot problems?
It is extremely important that a person with diabetes and loss of sensation in the foot check their feet daily for abrasions or wounds. Along with the daily feet check, shoes should be examined to ensure that they do not contain a rock, pebble, or sharp object that could puncture the skin and cause a skin tear. If you are unable to see the bottoms of your feet, even by using a mirror, you should regularly see a podiatrist for examination.
Feet should be washed daily using mildly warm water (not hot) and a mild, non-abrasive soap. If you have a loss of sensation in your feet, you should check the water temperature with your hand or wrist to make sure the water is not too hot. Don’t over soak your feet and use a towel to immediately dry off the skin, with careful attention in between the toes.
Moisturizing and Toenail Trimming
Toenails should be cut straight across and sharp corners filed. If you have difficulty cutting your own toenails, your podiatrist can help you with this task. Lotion or petroleum jelly should be applied to the feet before putting on socks and shoes. Avoid lathering in between the toes. People with diabetes tend to sweat less than normal and the feet are prone to dryness.
It is important to avoid going barefoot, especially outdoors. Thick socks should be worn around the house to avoid injury to the skin. Socks should be soft and have traction on the bottom to prevent slipping. Shoes should be roomy, allowing for wiggle room. Avoid wearing shoes that cramp the foot and toes.
There are several diseases, including diabetes, that can cause and contribute to symptoms associated with peripheral neuropathy. Neuropathy is a general medical term designated for any disorder of the nerve that is outside the brain or spinal cord. It is the peripheral nerves that carry information back and forth between the body and the brain, helping to control all voluntary and involuntary actions of the body.
Diabetes is among the most common cause of neuropathy, and associated with diabetes is the chronic problem with obesity. According to the National Center for Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, approximately 70 percent of Americans who suffer from long-term diabetes have one or more forms of neuropathy. This is a staggering statistic that requires attention from the medical community in order to address the root causes and problems associated with the condition.
Does Obesity Play A Role?
Neuropathies, in particular peripheral neuropathy, can develop as a result of diabetes. Contributing factors of these two conditions are poor blood sugar control, obesity and high blood pressure. Typically when a person with diabetes is overweight, other problems arise. An obese person with diabetes is at a much greater risk of developing neuropathy because of the added weight and poor blood sugar.
A person who is overweight and has had diabetes for a prolonged period of time is at an even greater risk of developing peripheral neuropathy. Research continues in determining the connection between peripheral neuropathy and obesity, but currently the common link is diabetes. There is a greater impact of neuropathy on a person who is overweight and there seems to be a link between diabetes and peripheral neuropathy.
Prevention is Critical
While there is no cure for peripheral neuropathy, there are steps a person can take to help prevent the onset of the condition, even if they are a long time sufferer of diabetes. The most effective preventative measure is to keep the blood sugar levels within their target range. Since obesity complicates diabetes management, it is critical for the condition to be addressed the right way. Keeping blood sugar levels within an optimal range can help eliminate the complications and prevent neuropathy from showing up.
If you are unsure where to begin in the management of your blood sugar or are experiencing symptoms of neuropathy, it is necessary to see your doctor immediately to address the problems. Starting now could save your life and relieve the symptoms you are having.
Scottsdale Neuropathy Institute has been helping individuals with neuropathy for over 20 years avoid pain, get out of pain, and get their lives back. Dr. Richard Jacoby has nonoperative and operative options to make life better for those with neuropathy, call (480) 994-5977 today to get started!