Neuropathy is a condition in which your peripheral nerves — which are the nerves that reside outside of your brain and spinal column — get damaged. These nerves send signals back to your brain, but if they get damaged, they can start sending the wrong signals. This can result in a variety of uncomfortable symptoms, such as numbness, burning sensations, and pins and needles sensations.
Our providers at Arizona Foot and Ankle Medical Center, with offices in Laveen, Chandler, and Mesa, Arizona, are specialists in neuropathy. We can work with you to diagnose your condition and design a treatment plan to help you get relief.
In addition to addressing your condition, we also want to help you better understand neuropathy. With that goal in mind, let’s clear up some common myths about this condition — and replace them with facts.
Myth: Only people with diabetes get neuropathy
A lot of people with neuropathy have diabetes to blame. When too much sugar builds up in the blood, it can damage nerve tissue, causing diabetic neuropathy.
However, you can develop neuropathy for a lot of reasons that have nothing to do with your blood sugar levels. For example, a traumatic injury can cause nerve damage. And autoimmune diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, can also cause neuropathy, as can infections, kidney disease, and hypothyroidism.
Long story short, you don’t need to have diabetes to develop neuropathy. If you’re living with unexplained pins and needles, loss of coordination, numbness, or burning in your limbs or extremities, you could have neuropathy.
Our team offers a range of diagnostic tools, so we can determine if you’re having nerve problems. If we diagnose you with neuropathy, we also offer a range of treatments to help.
Myth: Neuropathy isn’t anything to worry about
In the beginning, neuropathy symptoms, such as pins and needles sensations, may just feel annoying. However, you shouldn’t ignore unexplained symptoms, and neuropathy is no exception.
The reason you shouldn’t ignore unexplained symptoms is because nerve damage — and the conditions that can cause it — can worsen with time. For example, if someone has diabetes and their condition is left unchecked, this could cause their blood sugar levels to rise higher and result in worsening nerve damage. The same goes for a lot of other conditions that can cause nerve problems.
Ultimately, getting treatment as early as possible can help prevent further nerve damage and also help keep symptoms from worsening.
Myth: I’m stuck with my symptoms
Here’s the good news: With treatment, a lot of people find significant relief from neuropathy.
Our team offers a variety of options that can ease your symptoms and protect your nerves from further damage. While we tailor our treatment plans specifically to each patient, we might recommend any of the following:
- Topical numbing creams or patches
- Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS)
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
- Minimally invasive nerve decompression
- Nerve signal interruption (neurolysis)
- Anti-seizure medications
Now that you know more about neuropathy, you can better determine if it’s time to make an appointment. If you think you might be living with this nerve condition, book an appointment online or over the phone with Arizona Foot and Ankle Medical Center today.