There are many ways nerves can be damaged, they can be:
- poisoned by a drug, or toxic substance
- attacked by a disease, like Lyme
- crushed by accidents, or slipped discs or arthritis, or spinal stenosis
- cut by a traumatic injury or
- simply not get the nutrients they need due to long term conditions like Celiac or diabetes.
This nerve damage can cause the symptoms of neuropathy.
Whatever the reason of the hurt to the nerve, there are certain symptoms that we see when people have neuropathy.
- burning pains either during the day, or when sleeping or all the time
- numbness, with loss of all feeling, or just a sensation of the area being “asleep”
- cold no matter the temperature or how heavy the clothing
- sharp stabbing or cutting or stinging pain
- the pains can be in just one area like a foot or hand, or in both feet, hands, legs or arms or even all over
When you have neuropathy symptoms, it means that some of your nerves are just not working right. However in many cases, there is hope that something can be done to help the hurt nerves. Here is more information on this topic:
If a major nerve was cut and it did not heal right then there is little that can be done about that situation. However, most of the other types of nerve problems listed above can be improved by our NDGen neurostimulation treatments in conjunction with proper nutrition, special supplementation, and muscle and joint treatments that restore normal function.
How a damaged nerve causes neuropathy symptoms
Most nerve cells that carry feeling and run our muscles live very close to the spinal cord. These nerve cells have very long tails called axons that reach all the way from our spine to our fingers and toes. The axons carry nerve signals up to the spinal cord where the signals then jump to other nerves in the spinal cord and on up to the brain. The axons are covered by insulation, just like the electrical wires in your house. If your nerves lose their insulation, they cannot work properly and you will get neuropathy symptoms. Or, if the nerve is damaged by one of the ways listed above, it shrinks. The shrunken nerve no longer connects well to the next nerve up the chain to so its signals no longer reach the brain as they should. The brain interprets this loss of signals as whatever the neuropathy symptom feels like to you.
Help for the hurt nerves of neuropathy
Helping a hurt the hurt nerves causing neuropathy takes time and doing a number of things right. Say for instance, if the nerve had its axon tail compressed so that the internal structure is damaged. In this case, if we can remove the compression, then the nerve then needs to rebuild the hurt axon. Axons heal about a millimeter a day. However, as the rebuilt parts of the axon return to working, sensations return to the part of the body that the healed section of the axon is able to reach. This is why for some of our patients, their symptoms get better in areas closer to their spine first. Then their toes or fingers are the last parts to feel better.
Some toxins and diseases damage the insulation around the nerves. In these cases your body needs to repair the insulation before the nerve can work correctly.
So, while the NDGen neurostimulation therapy we offer helps the nerve repair by supplying the electrical current it needs, we also need to supply the regenerating nerve with the proper nutrients so it can heal. We need to remove the toxin if possible, such as avoiding eating foods containing toxic substances like aspartame. And, it is important control any disease process if possible like keeping blood sugar under control for diabetics. Reducing as much compression on the nerve and irritation of the nerve as possible by our hands on joint, muscle and soft-tissue therapy also helps the healing.
Where do you start?
When we do a lot of little things right, then the body will start to heal itself. This gentle healing takes time and attention to detail. That is why in most cases we start out with an 8 to 12 week trial of care. We normally expect to see the beginnings of improvement, and signs of healing within this amount of time. You will also have had time to learn and experiment with lifestyle changes that you need to make to keep yourself healing and getting healthier. Here at Neuropathy Northshore, we not only work at helping reduce your neuropathy symptoms but we also teach you what you can do to help yourself.
If you or someone you care about have been suffering… even for a long time… call us today at 978-535-6155 for a complimentary initial analysis. Dr. Ellen will sit down with you and discuss your condition to determine if she might be able to help you.