What is neuropathy? Neuropathy is a stabbing, burning or tingling sensation. It can be caused by diabetes, spinal stenosis, chemotherapy, shingles or nerve damage.
Western treatments may include surgery, but generally neuropathy is treated with drugs. Some patients cannot tolerate the side effects of drug treatment or it may be ineffective and they seek out alternative treatments like acupuncture to help the neuropathy and manage the side effects of the drugs. In many cases patients are able to reduce the amount of drugs they are taking and sometimes even stop taking them, completely managing their condition with acupuncture.
Treatment outcomes with acupuncture
In general, the more severe the case the more acupuncture treatment a patient is going to need. Your acupuncturist will discuss your general health, how severe the pain is, how large the affected area is and how long you’ve had the condition. From the acupuncturist’s assessment you will be given a custom treatment plan. Patients who follow the treatment plan exactly get the best results.
Supportive treatment at home includes quitting smoking, getting regular exercise and good sleep habits. Acupuncture can help support you in lifestyle changes like quitting smoking, getting better sleep and starting an exercise routine. Sleep is critical with any chronic condition because when we are sleeping is when the body is healing. Walking, yoga, chair yoga and stretching are great exercises to begin with at home.
Make sure you get yourself some good shoes and treat your body well. Compression socks might be helpful too.
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Meaghan Massella, M.Ac, L.Ac, Dipl. Ac (NCCAOM) is an acupuncturist, business owner and mother of 2.