Our bodies are made of 11 systems, each system consists of a few organs, each organ of many tissues, and each tissue of many more cells. And there is one higher system that controls every single cell of the body, which is the Nervous System, aka. the Brain, the Spinal Cord, and the Nerves. If anything were to interfere with this how system works, like nerve damage, everything else in the body can be affected. How bad it’s affected depends on the level of damage.
Inside Look into the Workings of the Nerves
The Brain and the Spinal cord make up the Central Nervous System (CNS). Think of our CNS as the mastermind, or the CPU of a computer, if you may. This CPU is connected to every part of our body through electrical wires known as nerves. The nerves that come out of the brain and spinal cord are known as the Peripheral Nervous System (PNS).
Through these nerves, your CNS can receive information and send orders in the form of electrical impulses. When the tip of your finger gets closer to the heat of a fire, for instance, the nerve endings in your finger send pain signals to the higher mastermind, which in turn sends an order to your hand to immediately move away from the danger. Likewise, the CNS controls every process in your body; by receiving information through the sensory nerves (like when you feel pain), or sending orders through motor nerves (like moving your muscles) and autonomic nerves (which control respiration, digestion, heart rate… etc.)
Early Symptoms of Neuropathy
This is actually a very complex process that takes place in fractions of a second. How the nerves are structured and the way they operate are even more complicated, but let’s just say that most of these nerves are covered by a layer of protection. If this layer gets weak, say, because of lack of proper nutrition, stress, diseases, medications, or other factors, the nerves don’t function properly. This damage is called Neuropathy, and it’s not to be taken lightly at all.
Depending on the place and degree of nerve damage, you might feel the nerve pain in different parts. One of the most commonly complained from nerve pain is the Sciatica, which extends from the lower back and through the thighs. People suffering from sciatica pain find it very painful to press their weight onto their lower back during walking or any lower body movement. The slight nerve damage can also cause feelings of numbness and tingling in the affected area. Symptoms of neuropathy include:
- Gradual feeling of numbness and tingling in hands and/or feet
- Pain that is sharp, stabbing, throbbing, burning or freezing
- Becoming very sensitive to being touched
- Muscle weakness
- Difficulty in movement coordination
Why You Should Not Take Nerve Pains for Granted
The pain you’re feeling should be an alarm that something is starting to go wrong with your nerves, if you ignore it long enough, it might become an irreversible damage. As the nerve damage persists and advances, the nerves might be too damaged to be repaired anymore. Some symptoms of the more advanced neuropathy include:
- Intolerance of heat, or sweating excessively
- Having issues with digestion, bladder, and bowel movements
- Dizziness and lightheadedness as a result of blood pressure alterations
- Falling due to lack of control on muscle movement and coordination
- Paralysis of the motor nerves affected
- Erectile dysfunction
What Could Cause Neuropathy
Neuropathy can result from different causes, the likes of which:
- Diseases, such as diabetes, in which elevated blood sugar causes inflammation and nerve damage.
- Medications, the most common of which is antineoplastic (cancer) therapy.
- Injury from a wrong exercise form or overworking yourself.
- Structural deviations, such as a herniated disc pressing on a nerve.
- Poor diet and nutrition, so the nerves don’t get enough supplements to repair themselves.
Neuropathy Prevention and Treatment
You should never wait until the pain advances into worse symptoms. If you start feeling any numbness or tingling in your arms or legs, or you notice any changes from the lists mentioned above, you should immediately consult with your physician. When caught early, neuropathy can be easily prevented from advancing, and even treated.
As explained on NeuropathyCure.org, the treatment for neuropathy depends to a great extent on the cause of this neuropathy. Sometimes it’s a result of a disease, like diabetes, or a result of some medications, such as cancer therapy. Your physician should determine the underlying cause for progressive nerve damage, and decide on the best course of action to prevent further damage. In other cases, the pain might be stemming from overuse of the nerves, lack of nutritional supplements, or certain exercise-related injuries. In such cases, taking B Vitamins (B1, B6, B12), Vitamin D, and Alpha Lipoic Acid supplements will help repair the nerves and cure the feelings of pain – without any of the side effects that come with other chemical medications.
Other alternative treatment options can also include transcutaneous electrical nerve impulse stimulation, casting, massage and acupuncture therapies, chiropractic care, and physiotherapy.
Taking Care of Your Nerves
Our nerves play a critical role in how every single process, no matter how tiny, is carried out in our bodies. When something starts to go wrong in the nerves and how they should be doing their work, we start feeling numbness, tingling, and pain in the affected nerve area. This pain indicates there’s a nerve damage somewhere, and we should listen to that pain and take action right away. If the damage progresses, the nerve damage might become irreversible. Even better yet, our lifestyle and nutrition habits should be maintained well enough to prevent any onset of neuropathy.