Examine The Effects Of Diabetes Neuropathy

Diabetes neuropathy is a complication of diabetes affecting the nerves that are an important part of the body and carry messages from one part to the other, forming the nervous system. When you have diabetes, because of fluctuating blood sugar levels, the nerves can get affected and damaged, giving rise to many neuropathies.

What Is Diabetes Neuropathy?

Diabetes NeuropathyDifferent kinds of neuropathies affect different parts of the body in varying degrees. Among them are:

Peripheral – numbness, pain or tingling in feet and legs, which can later spread to hands and arms. This can be accompanied by cramps, loss of coordination and insensitivity to pain.

Autonomic – affects the visceral nerve and this impacts heart rate and digestion. Nausea, vomiting and other digestive disorders or blurring of vision can point to autonomic neuropathy. It can also cause vaginal dryness in women or erectile dysfunction in men.

Proximal also called diabetic amyotrophy – affects the lower back and goes down to the legs. It can start as a pain in the buttocks or upper thighs and make it difficult to get up from a sitting position. If not treated, it can result in atrophy of the thigh muscles and difficulty in walking. If the abdomen is affected, it can cause bloating orweight loss.

Focal – affects the head, torso or leg, affecting vision, facial paralysis, chest pain, abdominal pain or thigh pain, but usually only affects one part of the body.

How Does Diabetes Neuropathy Happen?

Some people may never develop this complication while others suffer from it. Among the factors that increase the likelihood of developing diabetic neuropathy are

  • Sugar swings on a regular basis due to poor control
  • The longer you have had diabetes the more your risk
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Poor lipid control
  • Smoking – smoking decreases the flow of oxygenated blood and also contributes to delayed wound healing

About 50 percent of people who have diabetes may get this complication and if you drink alcohol and your sugar level fluctuates a great deal, there is greater risk of suffering from nerve damage.

How Do You Prevent It?

developing Diabetes NeuropathyPrevention is better than cure and this is very true in neuropathies – fluctuating blood sugar levels can cause problems, so it is of utmost importance to keep the blood sugar levels under tight control and make sure that your insulin intake or oral diabetic medications and your food are in balance. Exercising and eating the right foods are necessary to prevent diabetic neuropathies.

Diabetics are also prone to infections and ulcers that don’t heal. If you get a sore or any local skin infection, you must take care of it immediately and seek your doctor’s advice instead of trying home remedies.

Make sure that you wear the right footwear, which is comfortable since foot ulcers can be problematic. For diabetics, foot care is of utmost importance: keep your feet well moisturized and cut your nails short. The nerves in the feet are the longest ones and a comprehensive medical exam of the feet is a necessity.

If any neuropathy does occur, it should be treated immediately and prevented from worsening. Other preventive measures include stopping alcohol, smoking and taking care of cholesterol levels.

What Are The Complications Associated With Diabetic Neuropathy?

Apart from the existing problems with nerve disorders, you have to be on the lookout for complications like

  • Urinary infections
  • Bladder infections
  • Kidney problems
  • Face, eyelids or mouth drooping
  • Foot injury due to loss of sensation
  • Muscle damage
  • Decrease in mass
  • Nausea and vomiting that can cause fluctuating sugar levels
  • Skin damage
  • Soft tissue damage
  • Risk of limb amputation

As neuropathies often result in loss of pain sensation, you are at increased risk of not feeling chest pains or angina and have a heart attack without any symptoms.

Diabetes neuropathy is best treated in the early stages with appropriate medication or a combination of drugs and keeping blood sugar levels stable. Anti-depressants, opoids and anti-seizure medicines are usually prescribed for pain relief.



Related News In:

1. Diabetic Neuropathy Raises Risk of Erectile Dysfunction (ED), Urinary Problems

Erectile dysfunction and lower-urinary-tract symptoms are common among men with type 1 diabetes who have diabetic peripheral neuropathy (DPN), a new analysis finds…(read more)


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