Peripheral neuropathy is a painful condition that is caused by nerve damage. You may suffer from peripheral neuropathy as a result of several different health conditions or problems related to toxins – including diabetes, infections, and exposure to poisons. What causes peripheral neuropathy and are you likely to suffer from this health condition?
10 Risk Factors for Peripheral Neuropathy
1. Diabetes: Half of all diabetes sufferers will have problems with peripheral neuropathy.
2. Infection: Viral and bacterial infections can cause peripheral neuropathy including HIV, Lyme disease, shingles, and hepatitis C.
3. Vitamin deficiency: A deficiency in vitamins, particularly the B vitamins, can cause nerve damage over a long period of time.
4. Autoimmune disease: For example, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and Sjogren’s syndrome.
5. Toxins: Exposure to heavy metals, chemicals and other toxins can cause nerve damage.
6. Medications: In particular, chemotherapy to treat cancer.
7. Injury or pressure: Nerve damage can be the result of a car accident, a fall, or a sports injury.
8. Repetitive motion: Typing, sitting till for long periods of time, or other repetitive motions can result in nerve damage.
9. Inherited disorders
What are the Symptoms?
Your symptoms will be different depending on which nerves in your body are affected by the disease. For example, if your sensory nerves are damaged then you will be heat sensitive and sensitive to touch. Damage to the motor nerves results in muscle weakness and sometimes paralysis. When the autonomic nerves are affected you may suffer from digestive problems or issues with the bladder or bowel. Symptoms that are the same regardless of which nerves are damaged include tingling or numbness in the hands or feet, pain, loss of coordination, and changes in the appearance of skin, hair and nails.
Treatment for Peripheral Neuropathy
If you have the symptoms of peripheral neuropathy then visit a doctor or clinician to determine the nature of the condition and whether it is caused by any underlying health concern. The goal of effective peripheral neuropathy treatment is to control the health condition that causes nerve damage, while limiting the impact of pain. When treatment is started early it can make a big difference to your quality of life. Massage and physical therapy are particularly effective, and other alternative treatments are popular.