Neuropathic pain is a type of chronic pain that occurs when the nerve fibres, or nerves, are damaged. It can be caused by an illness or injury. Neuropathic pain can also be caused by certain medical treatments such as chemotherapy and surgery to remove parts of the body like limbs or organs. There are many ways to relieve neuropathic pain including medications, acupuncture, physical therapy, biofeedback training, and more.
What causes nerve pain?
Neuropathic pain can be caused by an illness or injury. Neuropathy is a condition that causes chronic nerve damage and dysfunction throughout the body, leading to symptoms such as numbness, tingling, burning sensation of the skin, muscle cramps, shooting pains in arms or legs. These symptoms may last for a short time after surgery, illness, or injury.
What are the signs of neuropathic pain?
Neuropathic pain can be hard to identify as it does not always show up on a CAT Scan or MRI scan. It could also be caused by other conditions such as arthritis, diabetes, cancer or endocrine disorders. But there are signs that can help identify whether you might have neuropathic pain such as tingling in the arms or legs and numbness which may not be relieved by rest; shooting pains with no known cause.
Different ways to relieve neuropathic pain
- Supplements. Supplements containing vitamins such as vitamin B12, magnesium and calcium can help with the associated symptoms of neuropathic pain. There are lots of products in the market you use to rejuvenate the nerve to achieve relief from neuropathic pain. You can read reviews for nerve before buy product.
- Medications. Anti-seizure medications are often prescribed to patients who experience neuropathy due to epilepsy or other seizure disorders because these types of drugs can decrease nerve cell excitability which may reduce sensations like tingling, numbness and pain.
- Heat therapy. A study found that women who received heat therapy along with cognitive behavioural therapy reported less pain than those who only had CBT.
- Yoga. Yoga is a great way to relieve pain from neuropathic conditions. The gentle stretching movements and deep breathing can help with the symptoms of chronic nerve damage.
- Acupuncture. Acupuncture has been shown to be effective for treating many types of physical ailments including headaches, neck pains, carpal tunnel syndrome as well as neuropathy. It also promotes better sleep and a healthier immune system.
- Biofeedback training. Biofeedback is the process of using electronic devices to monitor and record bodily functions such as heart rate, muscle tension or brain waves. This technique is used to help people change their behavior by understanding how these functions are linked.
- Exercise. This is a great way to reduce fatigue and improve your mood as well as lower the risk of developing neuropathy due to diabetes, obesity or other conditions such like arthritis that cause pain in joints.
- Eating healthy foods. Foods rich in omega-three fatty acids, antioxidants and vitamin D can help reduce the risk of neuropathy.
Water is a great way to keep your body hydrated. Drink at least two litres per day to prevent chronic nerve damage from dehydration which could lead to pain or other health problems. You should also avoid things that cause dehydration like alcohol or caffeinated beverages.
- Cold therapy. There are a number of ways to use cold therapy including ice packs, bath or shower with iced water. You can also go outside in the winter and stand/sit next to a frozen pond or build an igloo.
- Massage. Not only does massage help reduce pain, but it has shown promising results for treating diabetic neuropathy. A study found that people who had diabetic neuropathy reported a decrease in pain and numbness after receiving therapeutic massage for 12 weeks.
- Prescription medication. Prescription medications such as gabapentin and pregabalin are used to treat neuropathic pain.
- Painkillers. There are many types of painkillers that you can use to help relieve pain from different types of nerve damage.
- Lifestyle treatments. Lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking, reducing alcohol intake and losing weight can also help to reduce symptoms of neuropathy.
- Sleep hygiene. Going to bed at the same time and waking up at the same time every day is a good way of reducing stress. It also helps regulate your sleep cycle which can prevent you from developing symptoms of neuropathy.
- Nutrition. In order to reduce the risk of developing neuropathy you should try to eat a healthy, balanced diet.
- Coping with pain. Coping with chronic pain can be difficult, but there are a number of things you can do to help.
Neuropathic pain is a common condition that affects many people. It can be caused by conditions such as diabetes, neurological diseases and cancer treatments. You should consult with your doctor to find the best treatment options for you, but there are also some natural remedies including acupuncture or massage which may help relieve symptoms of neuropathy.
Ellen Diamond did her degree in psychology at the University of Edinburgh. She has an ongoing interest in mental health and well-being.