Peripheral neuropathy is an acquired, degenerative nerve disease and there are currently over 50 known causes for it. One of the most common causes is diabetes, as high blood sugar is known to damage nerves and inhibit their function. If the primary cause of the neuropathy can be determined, then it is possible to formulate a plan to eliminate that cause and thus possibly reverse the nerve damage and its symptoms.
The most common symptoms are a prickling sensation in the feet and sometimes the hands, and a loss of tactile sensation in those areas of the body. Loss of muscle control and strength also accompanies it. It is imperative that the underlying cause of the neuropathy be determined, or else the symptoms may continue to progress to other areas of the body and get worse.
What is idiopathic neuropathy?
In about one third of the cases of peripheral neuropathy, the primary cause of the disease can not be determined. There are battery of tests that your doctor may perform to eliminate the possibility of the most prevalent causes, and sometimes all of those tests are returned negative.
These cases of peripheral neuropathy were no primary cause can be found are termed “idiopathic”. These cases are usually found in elderly patients over the age of 50. Sometimes the symptoms progress and get worse, and sometimes they just stay the same.
What can be done about it?
Being diagnosed with idiopathic peripheral neuropathy can be very frustrating because without knowing the actual cause, there is seemingly little that can be done to correct the problem. But there are several lifestyle changes you can make to minimize the symptoms and progression of the disease. There is also medication available that can help alleviate your symptoms.
Ask your Doctor about prescription medications designed specifically for peripheral neuropathy. There are pain medications that can help to alleviate the tingling and prickling sensations and loss of feeling in your extremities. There are are also over-the-counter neuropathy creams designed specifically for this purpose. You may have to try a range of products before you find one that works for you, as a medicine that works great for one person may not help another person.
Peripheral neuropathy is often caused by a deficiency of vitamin B, so you may benefit from taking a vitamin B complex supplement. There are also neuropathy support formula vitamins designed specifically to help with the symptoms that you are feeling. They often contain a mixture of B and D vitamins as well is a mixture of herbs and other medicines known to help.
There are also general lifestyle changes you can make which are all geared around healthy living. Many people find that moderate cardiovascular exercise, including walking, helps to alleviate their symptoms. Formulate an exercise plan and stick to it and see if that helps to improve the situation.
Maintain a healthy diet and keep your weight within the prescribed range. Obesity and being overweight leads to metabolic syndrome and diabetes, which are known causes of peripheral neuropathy.
Although it can be frustrating to be diagnosed with idiopathic peripheral neuropathy, and thus not know what is causing it, try to keep a positive outlook and do what you can do to improve the situation. Try different prescription and over-the-counter medications until you find those that work best for you.
Combine those medicines with healthy and sensible lifestyle choices so that your body can operate on an optimal level. You will then be doing all that you can and will most likely see some relief to your suffering, even if you can’t pinpoint the specific cause of it.