No matter how hard you try, every stand, walk, skip or jump seems more painful than the next. So, what is it about the feet that causes so much pain?
If you are living with diabetes, you may have experienced nerve damage or neuropathy. Neuropathy is a common side effect of diabetes and can lead to chronic, widespread nerve pain. However, it’s the feet that suffer the most from a tingling or burning sensation and even numbness. The reason for this is due to peripheral neuropathy.
Peripheral neuropathy is one of four types of diabetic nerve pain. It’s one of the more common types of diabetic nerve pain that typically affects the feet and legs first. Some of the more common signs of peripheral neuropathy can include, sharp pains, muscle weakness, loss of balance, foot infections or ulcers and an increase in sensitivity to touch.
Did You Know?
Between 60 and 70 percent of people with diabetes experience neuropathy.
Neuropathy is a result of nerve damage in a single or multiple groups of nerves. Nerve damage as a result of diabetes is caused by high levels of blood glucose or blood sugar over a long period of time. High levels of blood glucose can easily damage the tiniest of blood vessels, reducing blood flow throughout the body.
Without proper blood flow, the feet lack the nutrients and oxygen to function without pain.
Are there things you can do to prevent further discomfort or nerve damage to the toes and feet?
Maintain Proper Foot Care
You have the ability to prevent further damage and pain in your feet by simply maintaining a proper foot care regimen. Here are some things you can do at home.
- Make it a daily habit to check your feet for blisters, bruises, cuts or cracked skin. You may also want to check for any swelling or redness.
- Try to keep your feet dry and clean at all times. When you wash your feet, use lukewarm water and mild soap. Be sure to dry in between your toes and pat with a towel.
- Wear comfortable shoes that provide support and allow your toes to move. You may want to consult with your podiatrist to properly fit you for shoes.
- When wearing your shoes, be sure to wear clean, dry socks. You want to use cotton or moisture lock socks without tight bands for more comfort.
If you suffer from chronic nerve pain as a result of diabetes, consult with your physician regarding treatment options. Your physician may refer you to Loma Linda University Health Neuropathic Therapy Center. Intraneural Facilitation™ is an innovative new therapy that treats chronic nerve pain.