The Most Common Forms Of Nerve Pain
Nerve pain can disrupt your mobility, making tasks you love turn into tasks you avoid. There are several types of nerve pain though, and it’s important to figure out which you have so you can take the best steps toward healing.
Common Forms Of Nerve Pain
Typically, focal neuropathy describes damage to a single nerve. It can affect areas like your head, torso, hands, or legs. It can also cause double vision.
One form of focal neuropathy is Bell’s palsy. Someone who has Bell’s palsy will experience sudden weakness or paralysis to one side of their face.
This type of nerve damage affects the peripheral nervous system – those are the nerves that aren’t in the spinal cord or brain. They do, however, send signals from your central nervous system to the rest of your body. They also bring signals from all of the body to the brain.
Peripheral neuropathy commonly affects areas like the arms, legs, hands and feet. The parts of your body that are the furthest from the spine and brain are often affected. This is because the nerve cells of the peripheral system use a long process called an axon to communicate with the next nerve cell. The longer the axon, the more likely that nerve would be affected by peripheral neuropathy.
Autonomic neuropathy refers to nerve damage that can change the function of internal organs. This type of neuropathy can cause a host of concerns that directly impact the heart, blood pressure, digestive system, bladder control and sexual function.
Since these organs regulate essential functions, it can make breathing or digesting food more difficult. The autonomic nervous system is generally not under your conscious control, but is very important nonetheless.
This form of neuropathy refers to damage of a single nerve caused by injury, entrapment or blood vessel disease. Nerves can be affected by restricted blood flow, or compression from injury or repetitive use during certain activities.
A common type of compression mononeuropathy is carpal tunnel syndrome – compression of the wrist’s median nerve. This can include tingling or numbing sensations in the hand.
Diabetic neuropathy starts with consistent levels of high blood sugar. When blood glucose levels remain too high, damage to blood vessels can occur. This restricts blood flow and therefore damages nerves. The byproducts of hyperglycemia will also cause direct damage to nerves.
This form of neuropathy is very common among those with diabetes – about fifty percent. Diabetic neuropathy actually happens far more often in ‘pre-diabetics’.
This type of neuropathy is a complication from shingles. Older adults, who carry the varicella zoster virus are susceptible to this type of neuropathy. The varicella zoster (herpes zoster) virus is the same virus that causes chickenpox, but reactivates later in life as shingles. Stress is known to cause this to happen.
Postherpetic neuralgia is felt where the shingles outbreak occurred.
What To Do If You’re Experiencing Nerve Pain
If you’re experiencing nerve pain, it’s important to get to the root cause of the issue. That way, you can work with your provider to find the best treatment plan for you.
If you’re interested in care at Warner Orthopedics and Wellness, Dr. Warner and her highly trained staff are ready to care for you and your needs. With treatment devices like peripheral stimulator implants, physical therapy, and more, you’ll find the support you need in your journey to pain relief.