What is diabetic neuopathy?
A type of nerve damage that happens in people who have diabetes. This damage makes it hard for their nerves to carry messages to the brain and other parts of the body. It can cause numbness (loss of feeling) or painful tingling in parts of the body. Diabetic neuopathy can also cause changes in strength and feeling different body parts, ability of the heart to keep up with the body's needs, ability to digest food and the ability to have an erection (in men).
What causes diabetic neuropathy?
Nerve damage occures in people who have had diabetes because their blood sugar level is higher than normal. Over time, high blood sugar levels damage the blood vessels and nerves. That's why people who don't control (or can't control) their blood sugar very well seem more likely to get diabetic neuropathy.
What can I do to avoid diabetic neuropathy?
The most important thing is to keep your blood sugar under control. Take your medicines just the way your doctor tells you to. Eat a variety of healthy foods and avoid foods that are high in fat and sugar. Exercise 4 to 6 times a week for at least 30 to 60 minutes at a time.
How do I know if I have diabetic neuropathy?
If you have numbness in your feet and toes, pain or a burning feeling in your lehgs, a feeling of lightheadedness that causes you to fall, diarrhea and constipation, or failure to get an erection (in men).
What will happen if the nerves in my legs and feet are damaged?
If diabetic neuropathy has damaged the nerves in your legs and feet, you may not be able to feel pain in those parts of your body. This is a problem because pain can be a useful signal. If you have no feeling in your feet, you could have an injury and not know it. Your muscles might atrophy (decrease in size), causing you to have trouble walking, the skin on your feet might crack and develop sores. If these sores get worse and become infected, you might have to go to the hospital, or possibly have your foot amputated. Because diabetes makes it harder for an injury to heal, it's important to take good care of your feet.
What can I do to prevent foot problems from diabgetic neuropathy?
Check your feet every day for signs of redness, swelling, infection, pain, numbness or tingling in any part. Check inside your shoes ever day for things like gravel or a torn lining.l Have your doctor look at your feet during office visits (at least once a year) or whenever you notice anything that seems wrong. Choose the right shoes. Shoes that fit properly and have good arch support. Break in new shoes slowly. Wear the shoes for 1 to 2 hours then check your feet for red spots. Wear white socks and check when you take them off to see if there is any blood or fluid from a sore on them. Wash your feet daily in lukewarm water. Dry them well, especially between the toes, use a soft towel and blot gently, don't rub. Keep skin smooth by applying a cream or lanolin lotion. Keep them dry from sweat by dusting them with nonmedicated powder before putting on your socks and shoes. Avoid things that are bad for your feet. Do not walk barefoot. Do not wear stretch socks, nylon socks, socks with inside seams, or socks with an elastic band or garter at the top. Do not put hot water, electric blankets, or heating pads on your feet. Do not use hydrogen peroxide, iodine, or astringents.
There are multiple options in the treatment of this condition using vitamins, minerals and herbal supplements. I have listed them below in order of clinical importance. I have used these in clinical practice and have found their use to be very effective in the management of this condition. The supplements listed here are for "informational purposes" only. You should consult with a qualified health care provider for proper diagnosis and treatment of any health condition. You may also consult with me at www.HealthyLifeDoctors.com.