If you are diabetic there is a chance that you may come across the tingling or burning sensation in your feet.
Sometimes, it may feel like something is crawling on your feet and when you check it, nothing was there; one of the signs of diabetic neuropathy symptoms.
Your hands or feet may get numb for a small time and then get normal.
If you are facing above condition, please, it’s a request not to ignore it. You should consult your doctor as soon as possible as you may be suffering from a medical condition called diabetic neuropathy.
What exactly is diabetic neuropathy?
It’s one of a diabetes complication in which your nerves get damaged. If your blood sugar is high for a prolonged period of time, slowly your nerves start getting damaged and later shows complex symptoms that are painful to handle.
There are different forms of neuropathy that affect your different body part (which is discussed in later part of the article). But your legs are most vulnerable to get affected by it as it is located farthest from the body.
I am diabetic but currently doing fine; what are my chances to get affected by it?
It’s been found that around 50% of the diabetic suffer from this diabetic neuropathy symptoms.
You can understand the data that how rampant the problem is and still there is so less discussion about it.
The following factors increase your chances to get affected by this problem;
#1 High Blood Level
High Sugar level damages your nerves slowly and with time you will face the complications.
Diabetic neuropathy symptoms have been classified into different types and each type affect your body differently;
#1 Peripheral Neuropathy
It mainly affects your toes, feet, legs, hands, and arms.
As your feets are most distantly located from your body, it’s most vulnerable to get affected.
You may face symptoms like:
Tingling, Burning, Crawling Sensations;
Muscle Weakness around the foot and loss of reflex; you may notice a change in walking style of a person
If you are facing with these symptoms, it gets important for you to check your feet regularly;
Notice if your feet sustain any cuts or wounds;
If they do;
Report immediately to the doctor.
Neuropathy, if not paid attention, can destroy your leg senses. So if you sustain any leg injury, you will not able to feel it.
That untreated injury will develop an infection and make it spread in different part of your leg.
That infection that developed with small injury will ultimately get your leg amputated.
Try to wear a comfortable footwear every time to avoid an injury. Do not move out of bed without good pair of sleepers.
#2 Autonomic Neuropathy
It affects the nerves that control your internal organs like heart, digestive symptoms, urinary tract etc.
your organs get affected and show symptoms as follows:
a. Heart and Blood Pressure
Damage to nerves affects the body ability to adjust Blood Pressure and heart rate.
The risk of heart failure also gets elevated.
You may have constipation;
Gastroparesis (cause stomach to empty too slowly) which cause person to have nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, glucose fluctuation
c. Urinary tract
Prevent bladder to empty fully which could result in bladder infection
d. Sexual Response also gets affected;
Neuropathy affects your pupil. It makes you difficult to see at night.
#3 Focal neuropathy:
It appears suddenly and affects specific nerves, most often legs or head.
You may feel following problems in your legs:
a. Pain in legs and thigh
b. Muscle loss
They most often occur in older age.
But tends to improve by itself and does not cause long-term damage
It can also cause following diabetic neuropathy symptoms in the upper part of the body:
a. Double vision
b. The eye cannot focus properly
c. Ache behind eye
d. Paralysis on one side of the face
I just got diagnosed? why am I facing neuropathy problem so early?
Usually, diabetes got undetected for long period of time. You may have high sugar for a long time before you got diagnosed. And within those period your nerves may have got damaged;
The same happened with my case; I got diagnosed with diabetes in April 2017 and I came to know that it been a time since I got high blood sugar.
Within two months of being diagnosed, I started having crawling feeling on my left foot
I was in my office at that time;
I thought that it’s something very usual and will go away with time;
Well, it did go away and I didn’t think of it again that day.
But a day after, I felt it again with greater intensity and for a longer duration.
Within a week, I started having pain in front portion of my foot;
The pain was not excruciating but enough to change my walking style.
I googled about it and then came across the term neuropathy.
Next day, I took a break from the office and visited my doctor. He checked my foot thoroughly and said I am in beginning stage of neuropathy.
He prescribed me certain medication which I still have it.
What medications you are taking and are you finding any relief?
Before I write anything about the medicine, I want to mention that I am not a doctor neither I want to become one. The write-up is all about the medication that was prescribed by my doctor and the results I got from it.
Also, I did a lot of research on these medications and I think it’s better for our community to know about it.
When my doctor diagnosed with neuropathy, he prescribed me Alfalipoic Acid (100mg) tablets for 1 month.
After taking the tablets daily for 20 days and I felt relief from the pain I was having.
And within a month, there was no pain but some minor crawling sensation which appears for some seconds on any chosen day.
The doctor had asked me to discontinue the medication in a month;
But even after 3 months, I am still having it, though on alternate days.
why did I continue with the medications?
Because the crawling sensations came back;
So I am still taking the medicines but on alternate days.
Why are you not being prescribed with Alfalipoic Acid?
In Germany, it’s a standard to prescribe Alfalipoic acid for diabetic neuropathy symptoms. The doctor may even face legal issues on not going with the standards.
In fact, these tablets are widely prescribed throughout Europe.
However, the same is not the case in US.
I have read the stories in which doctors were put in trouble by prescribing these Alfalipoic medications to the patients.
It seems that these tablets are not the norms in US.
So if are living in US, there is good chance that your doctor may not prescribe your these tablets or may even not heard about the treatment themselves.
What is Alfalipoic acid exactly?
It is a naturally occurring antioxidant that can be found in many foods such as yeast, spinach, broccoli, potatoes, and organ meats such as liver or kidney.
What does antioxidant do?
Our body cells, is under daily assault from a variety of sources, from poor diets to pollution. This violent process is called “oxidation,” which damages your cells.
Enter antioxidants. They include vitamins and other nutrients that target free radicals to prevent the cells damage. ALA is one of those anti oxidants.
Alfa Lipoic Acid
Alfa Lipoic acid is an antioxidant that prevents cell damage.
It also helps to regenerate other antioxidants like Vitamin C and E.
For diabetics, the ALA prevents further nerve damage and improves the condition of existing damaged nerves. (so helpful for diabetic neuropathy problem)