Neuropathy is quite a common medical condition, with 25% to 30% of Americans estimated to be affected, according to Cleveland Clinic. Whereas the elderly (above 65 years) are at greater risk, neuropathy can affect people of all ages, often causing discomforts like stabbing pain, weakness in the affected area, and numbness sensation.
Good news: if you struggle with pain, numbness, or burning sensations in your lower extremities, a foot massager for neuropathy may help provide much-needed relief and relaxation. Curious to discover more? Perfect! In this section:
- How does neuropathy affect people?
- What are the symptoms of neuropathy?
- What are the benefits of neuropathy massage therapy?
- What treatment options are available for neuropathy?
How does Neuropathy Affect People?
As you may be aware, your peripheral nervous system connects the nerves from your spinal cord and brain to the rest of your body, including legs and feet. These nerves transmit signals to your brain about physical sensations and ensure that internal functions like digestion and blood circulation work optimally.
Basically, peripheral neuropathy occurs when the nerve cells, aka neurons, don't work correctly due to destruction or damage. This disrupts the neurons' normal functioning, i.e., how they communicate with each other and the brain. Thus, they might end up transmitting incorrect pain signals when there's no actual cause or fail to signal the brain when harm's on your way.
What are the Symptoms of Neuropathy?
Before we dive into neuropathy symptoms, it's worth noting that there are three distinct types of nerves in the body that may be affected by the condition. These include:
- Autonomic nerves are responsible for invisible body processes like digestion, heartbeat, and breathing.
- Sensory nerves are responsible for transmitting sensory info like cold, hot, touch, or pain.
- Muscle nerves are responsible for muscle movement like stretching, walking, yawning, talking, etc.
Let us now look at how peripheral neuropathy may affect these nerve groups:
Autonomic Neuropathy Symptoms:
- Loss of bowel control
- Sexual function issues
- Rapid heart rate
- Sweating excessively or minimally
- Diarrhea or constipation
- Difficulty emptying bladder
- Bloating or benching
Sensory Neuropathy Symptoms:
- Throbbing pain
- Tingling or prickling sensation
- A painful feeling from things that shouldn't cause pain, e.g., touch
- Loss of balance or coordination
- Reduced sensation to pain, hot, or cold
Motor Neuropathy Symptoms:
- Foot drop
- Muscle cramps
- Muscle weakness
- Muscle wasting
Peripheral neuropathy symptoms may affect one nerve type (mononeuropathy), two types, or all three. And in worst-case scenarios, they may cause daily-life challenges like sleeping difficulty or trouble working due to excessive pain in the feet or legs. Also, note that these symptoms may indicate other ailments. So be sure to consult your physician for accurate diagnosis and timely treatment.
What are the Benefits of Neuropathy Massage Therapy?
Foot massage for neuropathy involves various beneficial techniques like stroking, compression, vibration, gliding, kneading, and more. For the best results, these techniques usually get applied with the aid of quality-proven devices like the neuropathy massage machine. You can also go for the conventional human hand massage therapy that works well with the aid of herbal preparations, lubricants, soothing therapeutic oils, or salt.
So here's a quick review of the benefits you may gain from the best foot massage therapy for neuropathy:
- Massage therapy triggers the release of endorphins, the feel-good hormones that aid in natural pain relief.
- Massage therapy helps loosen stressed muscles and soft tissues that may be exerting pressure on your nerves.
- Massage therapy triggers peripheral blood flow, initiating the healing of the damaged nerves through a continuous supply of fresh oxygen and nutrients.
- As the neuropathy foot massager caresses the body at alternating pressures, it stimulates the nerves around the affected area, promoting speedy healing and proper function.
- Massage treatment increases joint flexibility.
- The treatment is a highly effective skin regenerator, improving its condition naturally.
- Neuropathy massage relieves lower back pain and improves range of motion.
- Massage therapy may relieve stress, anxiety, or depression.
- Massage therapy may facilitate speedy recovery from neuropathy treatments.
- The treatment may improve your energy levels by stimulating oxygenated blood flow.
- Foot nerve massage may improve feet functionality and balance.
- Massage therapy may enhance sleep quality and concentration levels.
What Treatment Options are Available for Neuropathy?
The common causes for neuropathy include injury, diabetes, alcohol & toxins, viral & bacterial infections, etc. Subsequently, the best way to treat the condition is to focus on the underlying disorder. That means if diabetes is the cause, more focus is placed on blood sugar control. Here are a few options you can explore, with the help of your doctor, of course:
The Foundation for Peripheral Neuropathy recommends the following OTC pain medications you may consider trying:
- Neuragen PN. The cream is made from botanic oils and relieves nerve pain, specifically on the feet and hands.
- Capsaicin cream. It contains chili paper oil responsible for the heating effect that may help relieve pain in some patients.
- So No More. It's a botanical anesthetic that may provide pain relief from neuropathy.
- Absorbine Jr. It's a blend of various herbal ingredients and menthol with muscle pain relief characteristics.
Visiting a doctor is another viable option for treating neuropathy. Below are a few medical treatments that your doctor may use on you to help suppress neuropathic discomfort:
- Transcutaneous electronic nerve stimulation (TENS). During the TENS process, the doctor places tiny amounts of electrodes on your skin to transmit electric weaves, thus blocking nerves from sending pain signals to the brain.
- Ergonomic casts or splints. Suppose your primary neuropathy symptoms are muscle weakness or instability. In that case, you may benefit from these medical products, as they provide support for the part of your body where you feel discomfort.
- Immunosuppressive treatment. If your neuropathy is due to an autoimmune disease, you may benefit from this medical therapy. It works by removing antibodies and other immune system cells from your blood so that your immune system stops attacking your nerves.
There You Go!
There's no doubt that neuropathy is one of the most discomforting and painful conditions ever. But the good news is, it is 100% manageable with the best pain relief and self-care solutions like a therapeutic foot massager, physical therapy, medical treatments, proper nutrition, among other best practices.So it's never too late to begin your recovery journey! Contact us today to get the best foot messenger for neuropathy.