If you haven't experienced the pain of neuropathy, commonly known as nerve pain, good for you. You should count yourself among the lucky ones who have lived their entire lives without it. But if you experience tingling, numbness, or even occasional sharp pain, especially in your feet or lower legs, you probably have nerve pain.
Muscle pain tends to be “dull” or throbbing, which distinguishes it from nerve pain. Neuropathic pain is usually long-term (chronic). It is caused by damage to the nerves, although the damage itself can be caused by disease or various other conditions. Medical research indicates that nearly 30 million people on the planet suffer from this condition.
Pain from neuropathy can affect a large area of your body or be limited to a smaller area, such as your feet and hands. You may get a pins-and-needles sensation or feel as if there are many small electric shocks. Sometimes this pain is accompanied by the area feeling hot or cold. Doctors often call this condition peripheral neuropathy because the sensation comes from the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) to the outside of the body (periphery).
Nerve pain can be caused by injury or compression of a nerve. It can also follow the onset of certain diseases, including multiple sclerosis. One of the most common forms is diabetic neuropathy. The disease attacks and damages nerves, causing pain, tingling, and numbness.
One of the most challenging parts of having this condition is that the pain can occur when you don't have a visible cause, such as an injury or chemical burn. People may experience neuropathic pain after amputation of a limb, surgery (scar pain), or after an accident or other trauma. It's also been known to occur after a herpes infection, shingles, HIV infection, diabetes, MS, or a lower back injury. Moreover, you may be interested in exploring the selection of neuropathy aids at our shop.
If you have a chronic (long-lasting) pain condition that you describe as stabbing, shooting, or burning, you should learn more about neuropathy/neural pain. If the sensation is like pins and needles, or if a light touch in a certain area of the body becomes painful, it may be time to make some corrective steps. Sometimes even the touch of clothing can be too much to bear.
Medical professionals can diagnose nerve pain and neuropathy, although it's often difficult to find the exact cause. Some patients have talked to a doctor and the two of them decide that the condition is nerve pain. But in some cases, even the doctor uses a trial-and-error method to find out what works. This can be difficult for the patient, especially if the pain or sensation lasts for months or years.
This is why it is so important to find the cause and use the right treatment to relieve neuropathic pain. If you are experiencing this pain, you should be prepared to describe your symptoms in detail. It may be necessary to have a thorough physical examination and other tests to determine the cause. This includes telling the doctor what the nerve pain feels like and more.
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Accuracy is Essential
Think of the peripheral nerves as the branches of a tree. They spread out into the hands, feet, arms, and legs. If someone asks, “What does nerve pain feel like?” you should be able to answer in detail, including where it is on your body. If you think it's related to or triggered by a particular activity, injury, etc., be sure to include that information in your own research.
It's possible that your nerve pain/neuropathy is the result of a vitamin deficiency or exposure to chemical toxins, including cancer drugs and alcohol. Other conditions that contribute to neuropathy include hepatitis C, diphtheria, HIV, Epstein-Barr, Guillain-Barré syndrome, rheumatoid arthritis, or an infection. However, about one-third of cases have no known cause.
Nerve damage usually develops slowly, which may give you time to treat it before it gets worse. Some early warning signs that may precede actual pain include tingling/numbness, difficulty moving a part of your body, or pain in only one leg. If you feel more clumsy than usual and can't attribute it to anything you've done, think about nerve pain and neuropathy as an early warning sign.