More than 20 million people in the United States are estimated to have Peripheral neuropathy (PN). Peripheral neuropathy occurs when nerves are damaged or destroyed by disease or injury. Injured nerves either no longer communicate impulses, much like a broken wire, or they signal inappropriately, like static on a telephone line. Other times, signals can be distorted like a wavy television picture. Neuropathy can also impair the function of small blood vessels in the extremities. Often the furthest nerve endings in the feet are affected first, or are the most seriously affected.
Symptoms can be brought on by diseases like diabetes, or as a result of viral infection or chemotherapy, and include tingling, numbness, and shooting pains in the feet and legs, which can also be worse at night.
When managed properly, some people may be able to reduce their medication dosages or control their neuropathy without medications. Diligent treatment can permit some recovery of the nerve function, as long as the nerve cells have not died.
Nerve health can be improved by a commitment to healthy lifestyle habits, like maintaining optimal weight, avoiding toxins, eating a balanced diet, and correcting vitamin deficiencies. It is particularly important to stop smoking because it constricts the blood vessels that supply nutrients to the peripheral nerves which can worsen neuropathic symptoms. An exercise program can improve blood flow, bringing oxygen and nutrients to the furthest nerve endings, improving muscle strength and protecting against muscle atrophy. With dedicated self-care, it is possible to manage symptoms and oftentimes to create conditions that encourage nerve regeneration. Strict control of blood glucose levels may reduce neuropathic symptoms and help people with diabetic neuropathy avoid further nerve damage.
At Elite we recommend a regimen of our EBM vitamins to correct for vitamin deficiencies as well as for promoting nerve health, coupled with laser therapy. Lasers can simultaneously reduce inflammation and act as an analgesic to ease pain. A recent study by Dr. Andrew Rader, DPM, has shown that laser therapy applied to leg nerves in persons with documented diabetic peripheral neuropathy leads to objective improvement in the nerve function, demonstrated by NcS evaluation. This improvement can lead to improved stability in the feet, which interrupts the causal pathway leading to ulceration, infection and amputation.
There are 10 benefits to laser therapy
Laser therapy causes vasodilation and activates the lymphatic drainage system resulting in a reduction in swelling caused by bruising and inflammation
pecific synchronized wavelengths of laser block pain signals transmitted to the brain, decreasing nerve sensitivity. Due to decreased inflammation, there is less edema and pain. In addition, high levels of pain killing chemicals (endorphins and enkephalin) from the brain and adrenal glands are activated by the laser light, blocking pain signals.
- Accelerated Tissue Repair
Photons of laser light penetrate deeply into tissue and accelerate cellular reproduction and growth. Laser light increases energy available to the cell so that cells can take on nutrients faster and get rid of waste products. As a result of exposure to laser light, damaged cells are repaired faster.
- Improved vascular Activity
Laser significantly increases the formation of new capillaries in damaged tissue, speeding the healing process, closing wounds quickly and reducing scar tissue. In addition, the acceleration of angiogenesis, causes temporary vasodilation and increases the diameter of blood vessels, improving blood flow.
- Increases Metabolic Activity
Laser therapy creates higher outputs of specific enzymes, greater oxygen and food particles loads for blood cells.
- Trigger and Acupuncture Points
Laser light non-invasively stimulates muscle trigger and acupuncture points providing musculoskeletal pain relief.
- Reduced Fibrous Tissue Formation
Laser reduces the formation of scar tissue from cuts, burns, or surgery.
- Improved Nerve Function
Slow recovery of nerve function in damaged tissue can result in numbness and impaired limbs. Laser speeds nerve cell reconnection and increases the amplitude of action potentials to optimize muscle healing.
Laser emissions have a direct effect on immunity by stimulating immunoglobulins and lymphocytes. Laser emissions are absorbed by chromophores (molecule enzymes) that react to laser light. The flavomononucleotide enzyme is activated and starts the production of ATP (adenosine-triphosphate), which is the major carrier of cell energy and the energy source for all chemical reactions in the cells.
- Faster Wound Healing
Fibroblasts, the building blocks of collagen, are the essential protein required to replace or repair tissue injuries. Lasers stimulate fibroblast development in damaged tissue, it is effective post-surgically, and in the treatment of open wounds.
Early diagnosis and treatment of peripheral neuropathy is important since peripheral nerves have a limited capacity to regenerate. Treatment may only stop the progression-not reverse damage.
Extended decline in peripheral neuropathy can lead to a loss of balance and mobility. Numbness in feet and hands can result in blisters or sores that cannot be explained, since you may not feel the pain of the injury. Untreated wounds can lead to infection, which in turn can spread to bone. Severe wounds can lead to amputation.
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If you are ready to treat your nerve pain and even possible reverse it. We have treatments. Call us at (503) 668-5210.