REMEDIES FOR PERIPHERAL NEUROPATHY
The symptoms of peripheral neuropathy vary from person to person and include numbness, burning, tingling or sharp pains. These symptoms are the result of damage to nerve cells beginning at the periphery of the body, in the hands and/or the feet. This damage is permanent. In general, neuropathy gets worse with time. Many health care providers suggest that there is nothing that can be done since the damage to the nerve cells themselves is permanent. However, much can be done to improve the environment in which the neuropathy appears and that in turn can reduce symptoms and arrest deterioration.
Because of numbness, our normal awareness of injury is often impaired. Be especially careful not to injure your foot tissue. With peripheral neuropathy of the feet it is essential to have your feet cared for by a professional on a regular basis; every 2 months is recommended. In addition, check your own feet daily.
Sometimes exercise will exacerbate symptoms or cause a flare-up. In general, allow your body to teach you what to do. Know first the correct way to do things. If it bothers your neuropathy, back off until it doesn’t. Try not to stop. Try instead to do the essential motion without setting off any reaction. Also use topical anti-inflammatory creams and gels and apply them right after exercise. I often suggest that you carry a tube of arnica montana gel in your purse and apply it in the restroom after exercise to any area injured which you are recuperating through.
- Increase circulation in the limbs using massage and movement. Increase joint mobility by making the joints moveable using manipulation and exercise. Use passive stimulation techniques like rolling the foot on a tennis ball but be sure to check with your doctor first.
- Check your feet daily for abrasions or tears in the skin and treat immediately.
- Improve the effectiveness of the nervous system with coordination exercise. Rhythm is especially beneficial. Coordinated foot tapping to different rhythmic patterns is a great way to improve.
- Do not be discouraged. Much can be done to improve the situation. Try not to cut yourself off from your feet or hands, especially the feet. If your feet are numb, because you cannot feel the movement in your feet does not mean that they are not moving. In fact, make the joints just as moveable - especially if you cannot feel them. Exercise them thoroughly. But be careful due to the lack of sensation that you do not overdo or use an exercise form that would be risky like running.
- Determine the cause of the peripheral neuropathy. Diabetes and nerve root impairment have similar symptoms but different treatment.
- Use topical anti-inflammatories where appropriate. With nerve pinching apply to the source (the spine) and the effect (the periphery).
The Building Better Balance approach:
One of the innovations used throughout Building Better Balance is to treat physical stress by releasing tension in the nearby joints. For instance, if your elbow has a problem, the shoulder joint will tighten up in response, even though nothing is wrong with your shoulder. Releasing tension in nearby joints improves circulation and healing in the injured area itself.
The DVDs in the Building Better Balance series offer hope for those with neuropathy. The second DVD in the series, Legs & Feet, includes exercise routines to reduce the symptoms of neuropathy of the feet. Also the guidelines presented throughout the DVD classes help directly with any of the chronic aliments we encounter like neuropathy. Experience an improvement in balance, tips for reducing falls if you have neuropathy and steps to take to reduce your symptoms.