What Can You Do About Pins And Needles In Diabetes
There is quite a bit you can do to relieve the discomfort that the sensation of pins and needles brings.
First, because there can be other causes of paresthesias, you can have yourself tested for the most common, such as hypothyroidism with a simple blood test. You can also make sure you are tested for Vitamin B12 deficiency.
You can take Vitamin B12 as a supplement, but it is probably more efficient to take a B-complex vitamin because ensuring that you have enough B vitamins can also help with energy levels and your overall health. Talk to your doctor about whether any medications you may be on could be causing the sensation.
Second, you can make certain that your blood sugar values are always within your goals. As mentioned, it is believed that nerve damage in diabetes is due, at least in part, to the toxic effect that high concentrations of sugar have on nerve cells. Keeping your blood sugar levels well within your goal is one approach that, needless to say, carries other advantages as well. Paresthesias can improve over timeusually over a few months.
Third, keep moving! Exercise increases insulin sensitivity or the ability of your cells respond to insulin and how well your cells can remove the sugar from the blood. Keeping your physical activity levels up will also improve circulation to your hands and feet, the parts of the body most commonly affected by the pins and needles of diabetic neuropathy.
For more symptoms and treatments related to diabetes read these:
All About Pins And Needles In Legs Or Feet
Pins and needles in the legs and feet is a relatively well-known and often uncomfortable sensation that many women of various ages experience. Although it may be challenging to pinpoint the exact cause of tingling extremities, there are various management approaches to prevent pins and needles from plaguing women’s days.
Keep on reading to learn all about pins and needles in the legs or feet, including what it is, what causes it, and how to properly manage it for long-lasting relief.
Excessive Thirst Is One Of The Classic Early Signs Of Diabetes
Drinking unusually large amounts of fluids throughout the day and even overnight is a glaring symptom.
Intake can be something like 4 litres or more per day. You can even start to feel thirsty immediately after youve just had a drink.
The more you drink, the more you urinate, which feeds back into the excessive urination cycle.
Why does this happen?: This is the bodys response to increased urination. With all that extra fluid loss, you become very dry and thirsty.
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Take Care Of Your Feet
If you already have signs of nerve damage, it’s important to examine and care for your feet on a regular basis. This will help you notice and treat issues before they cause more harm.
- Examine your feet and legs daily for cuts or sores
- Care for your nails regularly
- Apply lotion if your feet are dry
- Wear properly fitting shoes
- Test your bath water with your hand or elbow before you step in to make sure its not too hot
- Do not leave your feet to soak
How Does Diabetes Affect The Health Of My Feet
Diabetes-related foot pain is mainly caused by high blood sugar levels. Over time, high levels of sugar in the blood damage both the nerve endings and blood vessels throughout the body. This combination causes nerve pain and poor circulation.
The feet are especially prone to poor circulation because theyre so far away from the heart. Diabetes-related nerve pain can appear in the hands, but most people who experience it feel it in their feet first.
Other factors that can increase your risk of developing diabetes-related foot pain include being overweight, kidney disease, and smoking.
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Treatments For Diabetic Nerve Pain
Damaged nerves cant be replaced. However, there are ways that you can prevent further damage and relieve your pain.
First, control your blood sugar so the damage doesnt progress. Talk to your doctor about setting your blood sugar goal, and learn to monitor it. You may be asked to lower your blood sugar before meals to 70 to 130 milligrams per deciliter and your blood sugar after meals to less than 180 mg/dL.
Use diets, exercise, and medications to decrease your blood sugar to a healthier range. Monitor other health risks that can worsen your diabetes, such as your weight and smoking. Ask your doctor about effective ways to lose weight or quit smoking, if necessary.
Cuts Or Wounds That Are Very Slow To Heal
Its not uncommon for an individual with high blood sugars to get a bruise or cut that just does not heal.
This is particularly common on the extremities that are furthest from the heart, like hands or feet.
Why does this happen?: Sugar lingering in the bloodstream begins to damage the arteries and veins, which restricts circulation. Blood is required to facilitate healing, so limited circulation to a wound or bruise will slow the healing process dramatically.
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Are You A Software Professional Or A Diabetic You Must Read This
Written by Bhavyajyoti Chilukoti | Updated : August 27, 2015 3:15 PM IST
Most people tend to ignore pins and needles that cause a tingling sensation in the hands and feet. However, Dr Sudhir Kumar, senior consultant neurologist, Institute of Neurosciences, Hyderabad says Although pins and needles is not quite common in general population, people above 40 and suffering from diabetes and vegetarians are at a high risk. Almost two out of three diabetics are known to be suffering from this condition. Although these people belong to high risk group, here are some common causes of tins and needles you need to know.
Diabetes: One of the most common causes of pins and needles is diabetes as the nerves in the feet and hands is affected in people with uncontrolled blood sugar levels. This in turn causes the nerves to not respond well to the stimuli. It can affect other parts of the body but hands and feet are more susceptible to nerve damage, in case of diabetics.
Vitamin B12 deficiency: According to Dr Kumar, Vegetarians are at high risk of suffering from pins and needles as they lack vitamin B12 in their diet. This is of concern, as more and more people are turning vegetarians. As vitamin B 12 plays a key role in proper functioning of the nerves in the brain, deficiency of this vitamin leads to nerve problems such as pins and needles.
Image Source: Shutterstock
About Pins And Needles In Legs
The colloquial term pins and needles describes a tingling or prickling sensation in the foot that is usually more uncomfortable and distracting than it is painful. The medical term for pins and needles is paresthesia.1
While pins and needles can occur in many parts of the body, it happens more commonly in the extremities, especially in the legs or feet. Though the sensation is often detected superficially on the skin, it can also feel as though it is happening deeper inside the body.
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Tingling Or Numbness In Hands Or Feet
A tingling or numb sensation in the bodys extremities such as hands and feet is a common early sign of diabetes.
It tends to occur first thing in the morning after you wake up, and can even feel more like a burning sensation.
Why does this happen?: Sugar that lingers in the blood will begin to damage nerves and nerve-endings. Nerves that are furthest from the heart are not well repaired due to circulation problems.
Symptoms Of Nerve Damage From Diabetes
Numbness is the most common, troubling symptom of nerve damage due to diabetes. The loss of sensation is a special concern. People who lose sensation are the ones most likely to get ulcers on their feet and to end up needing amputations.
People describe the early symptoms of peripheral neuropathy in many ways:
- Deep stabs
Others describe sharp pain, cramps, tingling, prickling, a burning sensation. Still others have exaggerated sensitivity to touch.
The symptoms are often worse at night. Be on the look out for these changes in how you feel:
- Touch sensitivity. You may experience heightened sensitivity to touch, or a tingling or numbness in your toes, feet, legs, or hands.
- Muscle weakness. Chronically elevated blood sugars can also damage nerves that tell muscles how to move. This can lead to muscle weakness. You may have difficulty walking or getting up from a chair. You may have difficulty grabbing things or carrying things with your hands.
- Balance problems. You may feel more unsteady than usual and uncoordinated when you walk. This occurs when the body adapts to changes brought on by muscle damage.
Because people with type 2 diabetes may have multiple health problems, doctors don’t always diagnose peripheral neuropathy when symptoms first appear. You need to be aware that your pain may be confused with other problems.
Make sure your pain is taken seriously.
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Pain Tingling Numbness And Other Signs Of This Common Diabetes Complication
The symptoms of diabetic neuropathy depend on what you have. Symptoms are dependent on which nerves have been damaged. In general, diabetic neuropathy symptoms develop gradually they may seem like minor and infrequent pains or problems at first, but as the nerves become more damaged, symptoms may grow.
Dont overlook mild symptoms. They can indicate the beginning of neuropathy. Talk to your doctor about anything you noticesuch as any pain, numbness, weakness, or tinglingeven if it seems insignificant. Your pain may mean the control of your diabetes could be improved, which will can help slow down the progression of your neuropathy. Pain and numbness are also important warning signs to take very good care of your feet, so you can avoid wounds and infections that can be difficult to heal and even raise risk for amputation. ¹
Caring For Your Hands And Feet
Diabetic nerve damage causes pain and can also affect your ability to feel pain, so its important to maintain your foot health.
To take better care of your feet, check your feet every day for cuts, sores, swelling, and other problems, even if you dont feel any pain there. They can get infected, and untreated infections can lead to serious complications, including amputation.
Wash your feet daily with warm water, and dry them completely afterward. Then apply a lotion to keep them moisturized. Avoid getting lotion in between your toes.
Wear comfortable, flexible shoes that give your feet room to move. Break in new shoes slowly so that they dont hurt your feet. Ask your doctor about customized shoes if regular shoes dont fit well.
Always cover your feet with shoes, slippers, or thick socks to cushion them and prevent injuries.
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What The Foot Specialists Will Do
Theyll tell you your level of risk if you don’t know already. And together, youll agree a personalised care plan. This may involve treatment, advice about the best footwear and how to look after your feet.
Youll see them regularly and this will be arranged through your local footcare service.
Youll get these appointments along with your annual diabetes foot check. Its best to go to all of them. That way, youll get the best type of professional foot care and keep your feet healthy.
Causes Of Peripheral 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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What Does Diabetic Nerve Pain Feel Like 11 Common Symptoms
Diabetes is a complex chronic condition that comes with a host of symptoms if not properly managed. One of the most complicated and challenging symptoms to treat is diabetic peripheral neuropathy. Also referred to a peripheral neuropathy or diabetic foot pain, this complicated condition requires thoughtful diagnosis and comprehensive treatment. What is peripheral neuropathy, and what does diabetic nerve pain feel like? Heres what you need to know.
How Do We Treat Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy
Since diabetic peripheral neuropathy is a result of high level of glucose or sugar in the blood, managing ones blood sugar is therefore an essential part of diabetes care plan. First, it helps with the pursuit of day-to-day wellness. Most importantly, proper management of blood glucose levels can help prevent serious health problems.
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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.
Pain Like Needles In Feet
Many people experience a tingling sensation that is pain like needles in feet. It is a common experience shared by most people especially those who are diagnosed with diabetes. Medically, this pins and needles feeling is called paresthesia, a sensation associated with the uncomfortable tingling, prickling, itching or skin crawling usually felt in the hands or feet.
It is sometimes coupled with a feeling of numbness or of throbbing pain.
While paresthesia is usually not a reason for concern, a persistent tingling in the hands or feet can be a sign of serious conditions such as diabetes and diabetic neuropathy, multiple sclerosis, hypothyroidism, Tarsal tunnel syndrome , kidney failure, Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, autoimmune diseases, infections or alcohol use disorder and alcoholic neuropathy .
What is that tingling feeling? What causes the pain like pins and needles sensation in the hands or feet?
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Management Of Pins And Needles In Legs
Pins and needles in the feet or feet can be managed in a number of ways, which will heavily depend on their underlying cause. They may include the following approaches:
Change of position. Sometimes unpleasant pins and needles in the extremities can be immediately relieved by changing position to take the pressure off the nerves and improve blood flow.
Hormonal balance. Boosting one’s hormone levels with phytoestrogenic supplements, like black cohosh, or hormone-balancing supplements, like Macafem, can help get rid of the pesky pins and needles once and for all.
Physical therapy. Engaging in physical therapy as well as getting a massage can relieve pressure on the nerves and reduce the sensation of tingling extremities.
Exercise. Staying physically active not only does wonders to the nervous system, but also naturally boosts mood, improves blood flow, and relieves stress, all of which contribute to hormonal balance and overall well-being.
Proper nutrition. Whether through a balanced diet or with the help of nutritional supplements, giving one’s body ample amounts of vitamins and minerals is key to preventing and relieving pins and needles in the feet or legs.
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.
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Peripheral Neuropathy Is When Diabetes Causes Damage To Your Nerves Particularly In Your Hands And Feet It Can Affect Different Types Of Nerves In Your Body Including In Your Feet Organs And Muscles
Nerves carry messages between the brain and every part of our bodies so that we can see, hear, feel and move. They also carry signals to parts of the body such as the heart, making it beat at different speeds, and the lungs, so we can breathe.
Damage to the nerves can therefore cause serious problems in various parts of the body for people with type 1, type 2 or other types of diabetes. Common symptoms can include leg pain, muscle weakness or numbness and tingling in your feet or hands.
What To Do If You Notice A Problem
If you see something wrong, its really important to:
- take the weight off your foot
- contact your GP or foot protection team immediately
- go to your nearest out-of-hours healthcare service if your GP or foot protection team arent available.
Its really important to try and sort it out before it gets any worse – no matter how small the change. A serious foot problem for some people can lead to amputation very quickly.
You may be looked after by many different healthcare professionals, who will tell you what to do next. The important thing to remember is to keep your weight off your foot.
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