Damage caused to the nerve fibres for longer time is classified as diabetic neuropathy. Diabetic neuropathy is also called as peripheral nerve disorder that is created by diabetes or improper control of blood sugar levels. The major problem like loss in the sensation of the feet is caused by most of the common types of diabetic neuropathy.
Diabetic neuropathy might get initiated after several years of diabetes or it might occur even in the primary stages of the disease. The numbness, pain and tingling in the hands and feet are some of the symptoms of this condition. The pain might be very intense sometimes and might require medications for its treatment.
The sensation in the feet will be lost gradually and it might lead to the danger of the person not being able to identify any injury in the feet. This might result in the formation of ulcers in the feet which can lead to an infection later. Diabetic neuropathy in some situations might involve discomfort in walking and weakness in the foot muscles.
The diabetic neuropathy leading to nerve damage can result in short-term or acute form of the disease or long-term or chronic form of the disease.
Facts About Diabetic Neuropathy
This condition is found to wane away as the diabetes comes under control. This condition is identified with a kind of burning sensation in the feet. The burning sensation usually becomes very intense in the night times and can cause disturbances to the sleep.
This condition intensifies gradually and causes serious consequences. The patients who take poor care in controlling their blood sugar levels will be at higher risk of contracting the nerve damage.
Nerve damage is common in diabetes
Nearly more than 50 percent of people suffering from diabetes are found to be having neuropathy. The blood vessels that supply blood to the nerves will get damaged due to the high levels of blood sugar. Hence, the nerves are injured.
Symptoms are not detectable in the beginning
Some of the symptoms like tingling of finger tips, bowel movement problems, abnormal sweating, urination problems, swallowing problems, erection problems, and down with food intake might show up. But, they will not indicate the severity of the condition and hence go unnoticed.
Possible triggers for nerve damage
If the blood sugar levels are not managed then it might lead to increase in the risk of developing diabetic neuropathy. The other factors that enhance the risk of diabetic neuropathy are high blood cholesterol, smoking and high blood pressure. Obesity and alcohol use are also the elements that influence the nerve damage.
Method of detecting Diabetic neuropathy
There are some physical tests that help in detecting the presence of diabetic neuropathy.The feet of the person are checked if they are able to sense the light touch, temperature, pin prick, and vibration. The measurement of muscular reflex and muscular strength are some of the useful tests for diabetic neuropathy. In some cases nerve conduction studies are also done.
Control on Glucose and pain medications are major treatment methods
The nerve damage can be stopped from growing further by improving the management or control of blood glucose levels. The opioid drugs, antidepressants and anticonvulsants might aid in bringing relief to the pain. The relief can be provided by the skin creams comprising of lidocaine or capsaicin.
The other treatment methods might be necessary for managing neuropathy which affects the various organs, bowel and bladder.
Alterations in the lifestyle will make a difference
Nerves are protected by developing control on glucose. So, following a healthy eating plan, taking diabetic drugs regularly and doing exercise regularly is essential. The blood glucose has to be monitored regularly and has to be managed effectively. It is also important to take doctor’s advice to quit smoking.
Taking care of feet everyday
Neuropathy often affects the feet and makes it to remain resistant to any type of sensation in it like any cut or injury. So, the person will not be able to know about the injury or feel it. The injuries that are not treated will lead to infections and further amputation. The diabetics have to check their feet every day for any presence of sores or bumps or cuts or swelling. The feet have to be clean and applied with cream every day. Wearing socks and comfortable shoes will protect the feet from injuries.
Taking doctor’s suggestion very often
It is necessary to get the feet checked by the physician very often and a detailed feet examination once in every year is essential. The neuropathy symptoms have to be informed to the doctor immediately as the diagnosis and treatment at early stages might reduce the extent of damage in the future.