Neuropathy is a condition caused by dysfunction or damage affecting one or more nerves. Common symptoms of neuropathy include muscle weakness, numbness, pain, and tingling in the area that is affected. Neuropathy can affect any part of the body but typically starts in the feet and hands. It is often associated with diabetes, but there are many other reasons that the condition can occur.
Researchers estimate that anywhere from 25% to 30% of individuals in the United States will experience neuropathy at some point in their lives. While all ages can be affected, adults over the age of 65 tend to have an increased risk with 8% of all adults in that age range reporting neuropathy to some degree.
How to Manage Neuropathy Naturally
Neuropathy can cause a great deal of discomfort and many pain medications are not effective. Often patients will turn to natural remedies to get some relief. Fortunately, there are many things that others have found helpful for easing the pain and stiffness that usually accompanies the condition.
- Exercise regularly – Exercising regularly gives you a nice endorphin boost which helps improve your mood and decrease your pain, but it also improves your circulation which helps with pain management too.
- Manage your diet – Keeping your blood sugar stable can help you manage neuropathy pain and even prevent it. Avoiding inflammation-inducing foods like processed food, sugar, and white bread products is a good start but you should also eat antioxidant right foods and foods high in fiber which are helpful too.
- Improve your sleep habits – When you do not get enough sleep it puts your body into a state of stress. Stress causes you to be more sensitive to pain. Sleep deprivation can also affect your weight and other health conditions.
- Stay hydrated – Proper hydration is vital for all your bodily functions. Staying hydrated can help you manage pain better and can help relieve neuropathy symptoms.
- Stop smoking – Smoking narrows blood vessels which decreases circulation. This means that oxygenated blood cannot get through and this can cause the pain and numbness that is common with neuropathy.
- Warm bath – Soaking in warm water increases circulation which can help to decrease neuropathy pain. However, if your neuropathy affects your temperature sensitivity, be careful that you do not get into water that is too hot.
- Relaxation techniques – Tension and stress can exacerbate pain and pain responses. Relaxation techniques such as mild stretching and deep breathing can reduce your stress which can help reduce your pain.
- Gentle massage with camphor and magnesium lotion – Magnesium is wonderful for easing the muscular cramping that is associated with neuropathy pain. Camphor is also very soothing for both muscular pain and nerve pain. Gently massaging the lotion into the skin can provide quick relief.
Vitamins and Supplements
- Topical capsaicin ointments – Capsaicin is the oily substance in peppers that makes them hot – and makes the heat linger. It is also very good for pain relief because it turns down the intensity of pain signals that are being transmitted through the body.
- Roman lavender and chamomile essential oils – These two oils have several beneficial properties including pain relief, increase circulation, and anti-inflammatory properties. Put a few drops of the oil in one ounce of a carrier oil and apply to the affected area.
- Vitamins – There are several vitamins that, when taken regularly, can help with neuropathy pain. They include B-complex, Omega 3, vitamin E, glutamine, magnesium, alpha-lipoic acid, and acetyl-l-carnitine.
- Quercetin and Boswellia supplement – Several studies have shown that quercetin and Boswellia supplements are very effective in alleviating neuropathy pain. Results are typically seen fairly quickly, after a few days, and get even better after a couple of weeks.
This is one of the rare treatments that can often get to the root of the problem as well as relieve the symptoms. If a nerve is being compressed due to misalignment of the spine or joints, chiropractic care can help get the body back in alignment and take the pressure off of the nerve.
Remember, everyone’s body is different so what works for one person may not work for you. Keep trying though and you will surely find something that helps.
Call Sandstone Chiropractic today or request an appointment online and find the pain relief you deserve.