Why is Neuropathy so Hard to “Cure”?

There are well over a hundred different things that can cause neuropathy.

This is a question we get a whole lot. And you would think there would be an easy answer.

The correct answer is, “cure” depends upon what causes your particular neuropathy.

You see, there are well over a hundred different things that can cause neuropathy. If you read us on a regular basis you know that everything from infections to certain drugs and diseases like diabetes cause neuropathy.

We recently talked about Lyme Disease as a cause of neuropathy. That is a good example of a condition that still gets missed in milder early cases and underlying damage gets done. That’s when neuropathy can take really hold.

Relief from Neuropathy symptoms.

Unfortunately, these conditions in and of themselves can be complicated to treat. Generally speaking, treat the underlying cause and you have a better shot at controlling and possibly “curing” the neuropathy.

This however is not always possible in cases where permanent nerve damage has been done. This commonly occurs in long standing diabetes.

Some cases where we do see good reversals approaching a “cure” are in some of our chemotherapy cases. Not only to pain, tingling numbness and burning get better but so do measurable changes like sensation, vibration and skin temperatures.

This is why it’s very important to work with knowledgeable professionals. And only those with the proper training and expertise.

In any patient with neuropathy, we train our clinicians to be ever vigilant for multiple causes of neuropathy.  Multiple factors in the same patient are also very common.

For example, often we have patients who smoke, eat poorly, are overweight, take Statins (cholesterol drugs) and blood pressure medications.

Each one of these is a neuropathy risk factor

So this not so hypothetical patient has FIVE factors, which may have caused individually or jointly contributed to their neuropathy.

So you can see, the more you know about neuropathy; the more you can fix, and then help yourself recover and “cure” wherever possible!

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What’s The Best Neuropathy Treatment?

Some common conditions can masquerade as peripheral neuropathy.

This is a question we get all the time. I wish it were easy to answer.

But it’s not. That is unless of course you are sure you actually have neuropathy!

Some neuropathy treatments when probably applied can be a godsend. They help many patients’ recover, sleep better function better improve mobility strength and even endurance.

Others have no merit at all.

Most drugs only mask symptoms and do little or nothing to improve nerve function.

Does your clinician know your full medical history?

But one of the problems we are seeing more and more is when patients self diagnose, or are wrongly diagnosed, and then apply treatments which are ineffective.

There are for example some things, which can masquerade as peripheral neuropathy. One of the most common is disc disease of the spine. When spinal disks herniate, or bulge centrally they can irritate your spinal cord and adjacent nerve roots creating symptoms, which mimic those due to other conditions such as diabetes.

Another common condition is spinal stenosis, even when the stenosis (which simply means narrowing) occurs in the neck or cervical spine.

A couple other conditions, which can masquerade as peripheral neuropathy, include RSD, MS or multiple sclerosis, and rarely infections involving the spine or nervous system.

This is why is very important to get an accurate diagnosis FIRST wherever possible. Make sure your clinician has ruled out all possibilities.

Help your neuropathy treatment clinician by revealing all trauma, surgeries, and even medication exposures, even if you think they are not significant.

By doing this, you will be paving the way for more effective neuropathy treatment.

As I tell new clinicians we train on a regular basis, working with peripheral neuropathy patients requires extreme diligence. Often times we find patients have more than one condition existing at the same time.

Unless your neuropathy treatment clinician is a specialist they may overlook or miss these things that maybe related your symptoms.

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Why does my Neuropathy Diet taste so Bland?

Unfortunately, too many people are used to highly processed and salted foods, so their neuropathy diet tastes bland.

One of the things that we hear very often when getting patients to shift their diets is how to make fresh food taste great. Unfortunately, too many people are used to highly processed and salted foods. When we consume these foods over long periods of time, our taste buds often need adjustment when we begin to eat better.

Another factor of which a lot of neuropathy patients are unaware of is that good digestion begins in our mouths. It is important to understand especially as we consume more vegetables and complex carbohydrates that properly chewing of our food actually begins good digestion.

The good news is that proper digestion can actually make you feel a whole lot better!

Very often, in the neuropathy treatment clinic we see patients that have been diagnosed with chronic G.I. issues. This can include things like ulcers, irritable bowel syndrome, or worse.

What we are eating is more important than you think!

Very often, these digestive issues are related to stress and years of poor diet.

It if you watch enough television or read enough magazines you would almost think this is normal.

The truth of the matter is that shifting your diet to more whole foods can result in some amazing changes, not the least of which is improvement in neuropathy symptoms. Of course, this is not the entire picture and all underlying neuropathy causes must be treated.

However, when neuropathy treatment patients shift their diets they often start to feel better than they have in years!

The reason for this is simple. Whole foods contain more water, fiber, vitamins and minerals. They are also high in critical antioxidants and other very important factors like the minerals sulfur and magnesium.

Consumption of specific vegetables like asparagus on a regular basis can help your body detoxify faster and more efficiently.

One of keys to neuropathy treatment success is gradually improving your lifestyle and diet. Take advantage of all the information we have regarding food preparation.

In particular, listen to my recent radio interview with natural food chef and TV host Andrea Beaman. Andrea and I discussed together value of learning to use proper spices, as well as consuming local and fresh produce, wherever possible.

One final word on diet and neuropathy treatment.

Make sure any dietary changes are done gradually.  And if you have any questions at all consult your NeuropathyDR® clinician who also has training in the appropriate dietary regimens impossible supplementation.

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Isn’t My Neuropathy Treatment Working?

The bottom line is your body is very sensitive to environmental changes.

“Why Do I Feel so Lousy?” This is one of things we hear very often from neuropathy patients, “It’s such a nice day, while I feel so lousy?”

Sometimes, it’s easy to put your finger on the reason why. For example you fail to eat properly. You over exercise. You under exercise. But lately you’ve been eating better and drinking lots of water but sometimes, you feel lousy for seemingly no reason at all.

It could be, that you are suffering from what neuropathy treatment specialists call “denervation super sensitivity”.

Now, that sounds like a mouth full. And at first glance it is!

The bottom line is your body is very sensitive to environmental changes. These could include things such as temperature, humidity, and other environmental changes.

Is it sunny and warm or hot and humid today?

The reason for this is that when nerves are damaged they become hypersensitive to environmental changes. This is not an old wives tale.

A very common scenario is when an approaching storm seemingly increases your level of pain and discomfort oftentimes dramatically.

It is a well-known phenomenon that anybody familiar with neuropathy treatment pain, or patients that suffer from neuropathy and chronic pain for a long time.

Some of my patients even joke that they have become walking barometers.  Now there’s nothing you can do to change the weather. However there are some things you can do to make yourself more comfortable. Number one, make sure you maintain as even environmental temperature and humidity level as you possibly can in your home and car.

Number two, keep yourself away from draft exposure. Even on relatively warm days, you need to make sure that you’re protected from wind and drafts.

Lastly, armed with this knowledge plan on extra treatment at home or maybe even in the clinic during times of flare-up

The most important thing of all though?

Recognize that your body while suffering from neuropathy is very sensitive and take steps to protect it.

This is one of the reasons, we advocate every neuropathy treatment patient owns their own homecare kit which can give you invaluable relief during the times of flare-up, during the middle the night, weekends, and even for breakthrough pain.

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How will I know my Neuropathy Treatment is actually helping?

The real measure of your neuropathy treatment progress often times comes down to the examination skills of your treating clinician.

This is one of the questions I get quite often not only

from patients but from physicians and therapists who are new at treating patients with peripheral neuropathy treatment.

It’s very important to understand one of the basic concepts in many patients with the most common types of peripheral neuropathy is that laboratory and diagnostic tests are often completely normal.

Sometimes, there are only very slight abnormalities which are misinterpreted or remain a point of confusion for both the doctor and the patient.

There are also tests for the electric function of nerves called EMGs and nerve conduction studies and sometimes even these are normal or nearly so.

All of this makes accurately evaluating effective neuropathy treatments a real specialty.

There is no substitute for a thorough examination.

Let me share a secret with you. The real measure of your neuropathy treatment progress often times comes down to the examination skills of your treating clinician.

Furthermore your neuropathy treatment clinician must have excellent recordkeeping systems so he or she can retrieve their information on a moments notice.

Some of the things that are tested for are really quite simple.

Things like your range of motion, sensation to touch, temperature, and vibration. Also your ability to walk on your heels and toes will be tested.

All of these things can tell your neuropathy treatment specialist so much about your progress.

And yes, sometimes you will need electric diagnostic tests to confirm your progress.

But, there is still no substitute for a very thorough initial examination as well as thorough and periodic follow-up examinations.

You should always feel completely comfortable with your neuropathy treatment specialist. If not, find somebody else.

Ask questions but most especially ask what the answers to those questions mean for the measurement of your neuropathy treatment success.

You have every right to expect honest answers.

Never forget this, and you stand best chance of neuropathy treatment success!

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What About Laser For My Neuropathy Treatment?

Well, it could be that laser therapy is the “missing link” in some forms of neuropathy treatment!

Laser has been around since about 1960 or so when a now famous scientist produced these “focused light beams” in the laboratory. Lasers have been used in medicine for many years.

These ultra focused light beams can be used at high intensity to seal tissue, aid surgeons dentists and dermatologists in their daily work with patients. And at lower intensity, they have had applications in physical therapy and neuropathy treatment for some time too.

Now, lasers are everywhere, everything from CD Players, printers and measuring devices to military weapons. I’m sure you may even have seen a few of your own!

So what does laser have to do with neuropathy treatment?

Don't let numbness and pain keep you from doing what you love!

Well, it could be that laser therapy is the “missing link” in some forms of neuropathy treatment!

As we discuss together frequently, no neuropathy treatment works 100 percent of the time. And that is a key point to remember. We also have talked about effective neuropathy treatment being the result of working only with highly trained neuropathy treatment professionals.

And nowhere is this more apparent than in laser treatments for neuropathy. Even amongst laser neuropathy treatment experts there’s often is disagreement as to what makes good neuropathy treatment.

But some techniques in laser neuropathy treatment equipment are looking very promising!

One of our basic attempts when treating neuropathy is to do what ever can help safely and effectively boost your nerve cells use of “energy”.

Well, along with proper nutrition and electrotherapy, laser may aid energy production in damaged nerves.

The way this may happen is fascinating, but way beyond the scope of this column.

But the good news is more experience and research including our own will help us find even better neuropathy treatments than we have available today!

Always remember though, we go to great lengths every day to be sure your NeuropathyDR Clinician is up to date in the latest, and best forms of neuropathy treatment for you and your family!

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Good Neuropathy Treatment and Your Mobility

Light activity as part of good neuropathy treatment often cuts the need for pain medications sometimes for hours, sometimes forever!

One of the most frequent things we are faced with in neuropathy and chronic pain is when our ability to move around and walk becomes affected.

Not only is this very common, but dangerous as well. You see, I tell patients all the time that when you can’t walk and move normally your chances of developing more serious neuropathy or another illness like worsened diabetes or heart disease increases!

Now it’s sometimes natural to not move, and there are times when rest is the best treatment. But, very often, even light activity often can increase body temperature, energy and help preserve muscle tone.

And here’s a secret: Light activity as part of good neuropathy treatment often cuts the need for pain medications sometimes for hours, sometimes forever!

Better Self Care Means Better Quality of life...

A little known fact is that activity and motion often can help reduce skeletal and nerve pain, but not always. And too much is NOT better! That’s why it’s important to be working with a neuropathy treatment specialist!

But how can we help our mobility without aggravation our neuropathy? Here are a few simple tips:

First, always stay warm! Even in summer, silk, light wool or micro fiber socks and undergarments really help neuropathy treatment. This keeps you from getting so stiff.

Next, protect yourself from wind or cold drafts, which can aggrevate neuropathy pain and tingling.

Throughout your day, be sure you are watching your eating and drinking habits! Stay well hydrated. So many neuropathy treatment patients don’t drink nearly enough cool, clean water! Even a little dehydration can aggravate stiffness, soreness and neuropathy pain.

Be sure to eat the “Neuropathy Diet” we spoke about HERE.

A diet that is anti-inflammatory, and low in sugar can really help you feel better in so many ways!

Lastly, be sure to keep a good record of what seems to give you he most relief and enhance e your ability to move.

Ask your neuropathy treatment specialists for exercises and home care kits to enhance your independence and enhance your neuropathy treatment success!

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