It is estimated that 20 million Americans have some form of peripheral neuropathy, a painful and debilitating condition that develops due to damage to the peripheral nervous system. According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, symptoms include:
- Intense, constant pain or numbness
- Burning, stabbing, or pins and needles sensations
- Muscle weakness or paralysis
- Organ and gland dysfunction or failure in extreme cases
It is also a progressive condition that can occur over days, weeks and even years. What are the causes of peripheral neuropathy, what is the role of inflammation in the process, and how can you find peripheral neuropathy pain relief?
The Peripheral Nervous System and Neuropathy
The human body uses a vast communications network that transmits information between the central nervous system (the brain and spinal cord) and the motor, sensory and autonomic nerves of the peripheral nervous system in the muscles, skin and internal organs of the body. Peripheral Neuropathy is a term referring to disease or damage in these nerves:
- Peripheral Neuropathy can be acute or chronic.
- It presents in a variety of forms and follows different patterns.
- While it can be inherited, it is most often acquired through a disease process, trauma, or repetitive stress.
The Role of Inflammation in Neuropathy Pain
A study published in the British Journal of Anaesthesia reported on inflammation and neuropathy, stating that “diverse causes of neuropathic pain are associated with excessive inflammation in both the peripheral and central nervous system which may contribute to the initiation and maintenance of persistent pain.” A key relationship between the inflammation process, which is what the body uses to respond to tissue injury, and peripheral neuropathy, is the release of chemical mediators. The body’s response to injury is to release chemicals that sensitize and stimulate the sensory nerves that report pain to the brain. This means that if the inflammation from the source of injury is not effectively relieved, you won’t be able to find neuropathy pain relief, either.
What Options Are Available for Peripheral Neuropathy Pain Relief?
- Nutritional and Dietary Support will go a long way in helping your body fend off further damage and in creating a healing environment that fosters repair. “Research shows that diet should be an integral part of a pain management program, especially as patients age,” says Dr. Welches, a pain management specialist at the Cleveland Clinic. “A vegan or Mediterranean diet–or healthier eating inspired by these diets — can control insulin and cholesterol levels and reduce inflammation — which is the pain culprit.”
- Electro-Therapeutic Treatments use electrodes on pain affected areas to override pain signals sent to the brain. Using varying electrical impulses, the same nerves are stimulated to confuse the signals and provide great peripheral neuropathy pain relief for patients.
- Therapeutic Laser works by improving the function of blood vessels surrounding the damaged nerves, improving circulation and their elasticity and circulation, bringing nutrients and healing to the nerves.
- Physical Therapy and Manual Manipulation can be important tools for relieving mechanical stress and injury related inflammation in the body. Chiropractic can eliminate nerve pain and restore flow by correctly aligning the joints in the body and improving imbalances.
Is Peripheral Neuropathy Pain Compromising Your Active Lifestyle?
At Health Star Clinic, providing non-surgical pain relief quickly and efficiently is our mission, and we want you to leave our team in a happier and healthier place. Contact us today for an individualized treatment plan that will manage even the most difficult pain conditions.