Prediabetes And Nerve Damage
Prolonged high blood sugar levels, even those in the prediabetes range, can damage your nerves. This diabetic neuropathy can lead to numbness, tingling, burning or pain in the extremities such as the feet, toes and hands.
Your feet are especially vulnerable to nerve damage as well as blood vessel damage from high blood sugar. For those with prediabetes, even a minor blister, cut or puncture can lead to an infection. If not identified or treated early, an infection can lead to a dangerous ulcer that may require amputation.
What Is Diabetic Nerve Pain
Diabetes can damage nerves throughout your body. In fact diabetic neuropathy is the most common, chronic complication of diabetes according to the American Diabetes Association.¹It affects 60-70% of people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Disease.²
Diabetic neuropathy can be extremely painful. It can also pave the way for health-threatening and even life-threatening problems including foot ulcers, amputations, heart attacks, digestion problems and difficulty recognizing low blood sugar episodes. While it cannot be cured, smart lifestyle steps may prevent diabetic neuropathy for some people and slow its progression for others. Medications and other approaches can treat symptoms, such as pain. And awarenessthrough steps like good foot care, regular foot exams and telling your doctor about other symptomscan help prevent this blood-sugar-related nerve damage from spiraling into even more serious health issues.
The best-known type of diabetic neuropathy is called diabetic peripheral neuropathy. It can cause burning, stabbing or electric-shock-type pain or tingling in your feet, legs, hands or arms. The pain may be worse at night treatment options range from over-the-counter patches to prescription drugs.
But theres growing evidence that diabetes causes deeper nerve damage that affects more people with high blood sugar than experts once understood. Other types of diabetic neuropathy include:
Intolerance To Fruit Sugar
When you have fructose intolerance, your body fails to make the enzyme needed to break down fruit sugar. This causes a byproduct of fructose to build up in your body and block your ability to convert stored glucose to energy. The result is your blood sugar drops below normal, and you have symptoms of hypoglycemia. If you have tingling sensations after eating fructose, avoid it until you can see your doctor. Steer clear of table sugar, high-fructose corn syrup and fruits that have a rich fructose content, such as peaches, cherries, pears, apples, plums and their juices.
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What Is Proximal Neuropathy
Proximal neuropathy, sometimes called lumbosacral plexus neuropathy, femoral neuropathy, or diabetic amyotrophy, starts with pain in the thighs, hips, buttocks, or legs, usually on one side of the body. This type of neuropathy is more common in those with type 2 diabetes and in older adults with diabetes. Proximal neuropathy causes weakness in the legs and the inability to go from a sitting to a standing position without help. Treatment for weakness or pain is usually needed. The length of the recovery period varies, depending on the type of nerve damage.
Please Come See Us If You Have Any Foot Or Ankle Pain
The foot specialists at PodiatryCare, PC and the Heel Pain Center have extensive experience in treating all aspects of foot problems. Our team of doctors who is consisted of Dr. Robert Marra, Dr. Thomas Johnson, Dr. Kristen Winters, Dr. Laura Vander Poel, and Dr. Ryan Donegan is dedicated to serving you with all of the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies. Many treatments and surgeries can be handled right in our offices. Please call us at 741-3041 to make an appointment in one of our offices conveniently located in Enfield, Windsor and South Windsor, CT.
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Not Quite Your Spidey Sense
Tingling fingers and toes isnt a sign of impending doom or a sixth sense. Instead, that mild irritation could be a signal of a health issue, like high blood sugar. Abnormally high blood sugar could lead to a condition called hyperglycemia. Most people with high blood sugar ignore these initial signs like numb or tingling fingers and toes. Checking blood sugar does not have to be complicated. A visit to a friendly neighborhood pharmacist is the first step.
Increased Pain At Night
Whether its because you are no longer distracted by the concerns of the day or the hypersensitivity and pain caused by even the sheet touching your feet, diabetic nerve pain is often much worse at night, making sleep impossible.
Because poor sleep and increased pain are bidirectional, one makes the other more intense in a cycle that is hard to break.
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About Low Blood Sugar Or Hypoglycemia
Low Blood Sugar, or Hypoglycemia, is a physiological state often experienced by diabetics, sometimes unawares, as a result of their disease. Hypoglycemia is a condition characterized by abnormally low blood glucose levels, usually less than 70 mg/dl. However, it is important to talk to your health care provider about your individual blood glucose targets, and what level is too low for you. Hypoglycemia may also be referred to as an insulin reaction, or insulin shock. Hypoglycemic symptoms are important clues that you have low blood glucose. Each persons reaction to hypoglycemia is different, so its important that you learn your own signs and symptoms when your blood glucose is low. The only sure way to know whether you are experiencing hypoglycemia is to check your blood glucose, if possible. If you are experiencing symptoms and you are unable to check your blood glucose for any reason, treat the hypoglycemia. Severe hypoglycemia has the potential to cause accidents, injuries, coma, and death. Signs and Symptoms of Hypoglycemia Tingling or Numbness in the Lips or Tongue American Diabetes Association Guidelines for Managing Low Blood Sugar Consume 15-20 grams of glucose or simple carbohydrates Recheck your blood glucose after 15 minutes Once blood glucose returns to normal, eat a small snack if your next planned meal or snack is more than an hour or two away.Continue reading > >
What Causes Diabetic Neuropathy
Although the exact causes of diabetic neuropathy are unknown, several factors may contribute to the disorder, including:
- High blood sugar . High blood glucose causes chemical changes in nerves and impairs the nerves ability to transmit signals. It can also damage blood vessels that carry oxygen and nutrients to the nerves.
- Metabolic factors. In addition to glucose levels, high triglyceride and cholesterol levels are also associated with increased risk of neuropathy. Patients who are overweight or obese are also at increased risk of developing neuropathy.
- Inherited factors. There are some genetic traits that may make some people more susceptible to nerve disease than others.
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Avoiding Or Quitting Smoking
Diabetes is more common among people who smoke, although researchers are not sure exactly why.
Smoking damages the walls of the arteries, causing fat to build up, narrowing blood vessels, and impeding circulation. Poor circulation contributes to neuropathy.
How Can I Be Better Prepared For Hypoglycemia
You can take some steps to be ready for hypoglycemia:
- Be aware of the symptoms and treat them early.
- Carry some fast-acting carbs with you all the time.
- Check your glucose levels frequently, especially around meals and exercise.
- Inform family, friends and co-workers so they know what do if you need help.
- Talk to your healthcare provider regularly to make and update your plan.
- Wear a medical bracelet that lets people know you have diabetes. Carry a card in your purse or wallet with instructions for hypoglycemia.
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Hypoglycemia is quite common in people with diabetes. If not treated, it can cause troubling symptoms, and even serious health problems. Fortunately, you can avoid hypoglycemic episodes by monitoring your blood sugar. You can also make small adjustments to eating and exercising routines.
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Diabetes Fingers And Numbness: Diabetes Can Cause You To Lose The Fingers
Diabetes fingers tingling and going numb is a sign of nerve damage. The official word is called Diabetic neuropathy. What this means is that the tiny nerve ending in the fingers are being affected. The consequences of this is that you may have to have your finger removed. Many with Diabetes fingers have had the finger removed due to the damage to the nerves. Diabetic nerve damage is serious business that can ruin your body.
It is important to recognize any pain in the fingers or tingling at the tips as a serious warning sign. Last week we spoke about diabetes feet pain and how many have had the foot removed. This is the same condition with the hands. The nerves are small in the hands and very sensitive, this is where we get our sense of touch from. Diabetes fingers are a sign of serious nerve damage. Those with tingling in the hands are experiencing the first sign that they can lose the finger if the condition is not reversed.
Warning Signs Of Diabetic Nerve Pain
If youre living with diabetes and have experienced a tingling, burning sensation in your hands or feet, you may be suffering from diabetic nerve pain.
Diabetic nerve pain or damaged nerves are a result of an injury or disease. The restriction of blood flow to the damaged nerves leads to the chronic, debilitating pain. Nerve pain can make doing the simplest things very painful.
Diabetes develops in children and adults typically as a result of the body not producing enough insulin. What is insulin? Its a hormone produced by your pancreas. The purpose of insulin is to help cells use glucose or sugar found in food to produce energy.
Now, if there is too much sugar in the blood, this can lead to complications, such as diabetes. Often times affecting the kidneys, heart, nerves and eyes. Diabetes affects as many as 29 million people in the U.S. More than 8 million people are either unaware or have yet to be diagnosed with the condition.
Patients with high blood sugar can experience a variety of health conditions, including diabetic nerve pain, often seen in the feet and legs first.
Here are the more common signs of diabetic nerve pain:
- Deformities on the foot
- Sores or blisters
- Sensitivity to touch
- Tingling or stabbing pain
Dont be surprised if you experience difficulty standing or walking. You may also experience difficulty picking up a spoon or fork to eat your meal or drop items on a regular basis. Most of this is contributed to diabetic nerve pain.
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Low Blood Flow: The Cold Truth About Poor Circulation Leading To Diabetes
If your hands and feet stay cold, perhaps even numb, its an almost sure sign you have poor circulation. While decreased blood flow can be a symptom of several medical problems, one of the most common is diabetes.
The symptom might seem mild, but if left unchecked, poor circulation puts you at risk for limb, heart, kidney, brain, and eye damage.
Consequently, its important to know how your poor circulation developed and how you can improve the condition.
What Is Diabetic Nerve Pain Or Diabetic Neuropathy
Neuropathy is an over-arching term that means nerve pain. There are four types of neuropathy, including:
- Peripheral neuropathy
- Radiculoplexus neuropathy
Peripheral neuropathy refers to nerve pain that is experienced on the periphery of your body, like the hands and feet. This area is enervated by the peripheral nervous system .
There are many conditions that can result in nerve pain in the farthest reaches of the body, including:
- Vitamin deficiencies
- Certain medications
The most common cause of peripheral neuropathy, though, is poorly controlled diabetes.
The hallmark of diabetes is a nearly constant fluctuation of the blood sugar, with spiky highs and cavernous lows. This constant fluctuation damages the capillary walls responsible for delivering blood to the nerves, especially in the hands and feet. As the capillaries become more damaged, diabetic neuropathy symptoms begin to appear.
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The Effects Of Low Blood Sugar On Your Body
Every cell in your body needs energy to function. The main source of energy might come as a surprise: Its sugar, also known as glucose. Blood sugar is essential to proper brain, heart, and digestive function. It even helps keep your skin and vision healthy.
When your blood sugar levels fall below the normal range, its called hypoglycemia. There are many identifiable symptoms of low blood sugar, but the only way to know if you have low blood sugar is by taking a blood glucose test.
Learn more about the symptoms of low blood sugar, as well as the long-term effects on the body.
most common reasons for low blood sugar are some medications used to treat diabetes, such as insulin.
In type 1 diabetes, the pancreas can no longer produce insulin. In type 2 diabetes, the pancreas doesnt make enough insulin, or your body cant use it properly. Too much insulin or oral diabetic medication can lower the blood sugar level, leading to hypoglycemia.
However, contrary to popular belief, low blood sugar isnt exclusive to diabetes, though it is rare. It can also happen if your body makes more insulin than it should.
Another possible cause of low blood sugar is drinking too much alcohol, especially over long periods of time. This can interfere with the livers ability to create a buildup of glucose and then release it into your bloodstream when you need it.
Other causes include:
Can Low Blood Sugar Cause Numbness In Hands
High Blood Sugar Symptoms, Normal Blood Sugar Levels, Can Low Blood Sugar Cause Numbness In Hands, What Is The Blood Sugar Diet.
Going a night or two without sleeping can cause Normal Blood Sugar Level the body to use insulin less efficiently.
Based on the analyte type detection, biosensors are categorized as .
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Signs Of High Blood Sugar
High blood sugar impacts almost every part of the body in some small way. For instance, hyperglycemia affects the nerves. The result is a burning or tingling sensation in the hands and feet. But thats just the start. Other symptoms range from frequent urination, weight changes, fatigue, poor concentration, and shortness of breath. Over time, more severe complications can develop like diabetes, heart disease, nerve and skin damage, and a reduced lifespan.
Causes Of Diabetic Neuropathy
Neuropathy is one of the long-termcomplicationsof diabetes. Over time, highblood glucose levelscan damage the small blood vessels that supply the nerves in your body. This stops essential nutrients reaching the nerves. As a result, the nerve fibres can become damaged, and they may disappear.This can cause problems in many different parts of your body, depending on the type of nerve affected.
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Can Diabetic Neuropathy Go Away
Without treatment, diabetic neuropathy will not resolve itself and can, in extreme cases, lead to death from infection. It is crucial to get a proper diagnosis first and then proceed with treatment.
In the beginning stages of diagnosis, your doctor will conduct bloodwork and lab tests to rule out other potential causes of your symptoms.
Once your doctor eliminates other conditions, they may perform additional tests, including:
- Nerve conduction studies: Measures nerve response to electrical stimulation
- Electromyography : Measures electrical discharge from the nerves
- Filament tests: Looks for hypersensitivity that is the hallmark of peripheral neuropathy
- Quantitative sensory testing: Measures the nerve response to sensory changes including vibration and temperature
How Your Pharmacist Can Help
A pharmacist can check blood sugar levels with a glucose monitor and recommend the next steps. The test kit works by pricking the side of a clean fingertip with a lancet for a sample of blood. A test strip should be already inside the glucose monitor. The pharmacist will hold the test strip to the drop of blood. In a few seconds, the results should appear on the monitor. If the blood sugar is high, the pharmacist will advise of the following possible steps.
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Why Does Diabetes Cause Numbness And Tingling
Your peripheral nerves send information from your brain and spinal cord to the rest of your body. These nerves also send sensory information things like pain, temperature, and vibration to your central nervous system.1
In people with type 2 diabetes, the body is resistant to insulin. This is a hormone that helps glucose move into cells so it can be used for energy. Eventually, the body does not make enough insulin. Since there is not enough insulin to move glucose in the cells, the extra glucose stays in the blood. This extra glucose in the blood damages nerves, as well as the small blood vessels that carry oxygen and nutrients to the nerves.3
Peripheral neuropathy can affect 1 or more nerves in different areas of the body, though it usually begins in the feet, legs, hands, and arms. The damaged nerves can cause a variety of symptoms, including:1,4
- Numbness or tingling in the feet or hands, which often spreads to the legs and arms. Some people describe it as a pins and needles feeling.
- Stabbing, throbbing, or burning pain
- Sensitivity to touch or temperature
- Pain during movements or activities that normally do not cause pain, like pain in the feet when standing up
- Difficulty with coordination or falling
- Muscle weakness
- Feeling like you have socks or gloves on even when you do not
Symptoms are usually worse at night. Most people experience symptoms on both sides of the body, but they can occur only on 1 side.4