8 Common Causes of Peripheral Neuropathy Infographic

Peripheral neuropathy is a chronic and often uncomfortable condition characterized by sensations like pins and needles, prickling, and a buzzing feeling in the body. It occurs when the nerves outside the brain and spinal cord sustain damage, impeding their ability to transmit signals to and from the central nervous system. This disruption can adversely affect sensations in the extremities, compromise the functioning of internal organs, and impair one’s mobility.

Among the numerous forms of neuropathy, they can be broadly categorized into eight primary causes, each with its own unique characteristics:

1. Diabetes

Diabetes is a prevalent cause of neuropathy, with approximately 60% of individuals with diabetes experiencing this condition. Elevated levels of sugar in the body interfere with nerve communication between the spinal cord and brain.

2. Lifestyle

One’s lifestyle choices can significantly impact nerve health. Inadequate consumption of essential vitamins and minerals can lead to nerve problems, while excessive intake of certain vitamins or supplements can be detrimental.

3. Chemical Exposure

Continued and extensive contact with particular chemicals, such as pesticides and toxic substances, can significantly increase the risk of developing neuropathy, a nerve-related medical condition.

4. Trauma

Accidents, sports-related injuries, and surgical procedures, despite being meticulously planned and executed, carry inherent risks of nerve damage. Even under controlled circumstances, trauma to nerves can occur, potentially leading to neuropathy, which may manifest as various sensory and motor disturbances depending on the location and extent of nerve injury.

5. Medications

Some medications used to manage conditions like cholesterol, blood pressure, or infections may have neuropathy as a side effect. Additionally, chemotherapy and radiation therapy for cancer treatment can also be implicated.

6. Autoimmune Disorders

Autoimmune disorders like lupus and rheumatoid arthritis are characterized by the immune system’s misdirected attacks on the body’s own tissues, leading to chronic pain and inflammation primarily affecting the limbs, including the arms and legs. This immune dysfunction can contribute to the development of neuropathy.

7. Lifestyle Habits

Unhealthy lifestyle habits such as excessive alcohol consumption, smoking, and recreational drug use can gradually harm the nerves over time.

8. Genetics

In some cases, neuropathy is hereditary. Conditions like Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease can damage nerves and manifest in distinctive changes in the appearance of the feet.

Preventing neuropathy involves proactive measures such as regular exercise to promote nerve health, strict blood sugar control for individuals with diabetes, attentive foot care, and maintaining a balanced intake of essential nutrients. Consulting with a healthcare provider about medications to prevent nerve damage is also crucial.

In cases where neuropathy has already developed, available treatment options include medications to manage symptoms, surgical interventions, consultation with specialists to pinpoint and address the underlying cause, and exploration of potential innovative therapies if conventional methods prove ineffective. While insurance coverage for these new treatments may be limited, the potential benefits, such as improved mobility and enhanced quality of life, justify the investment.

Peripheral neuropathy is a challenging condition, but with early detection and a proactive approach to prevention and treatment, individuals can manage this condition effectively, offering hope for an improved quality of life.

source: https://axiom-chiropractic.com/8-leading-causes-of-peripheral-neuropathy/


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