We’ve discussed diabetic neuropathy a lot– from exercises you can do to relieve pain associated with different types of neuropathy, to ways to stave off this nasty complication. And while we all know it’s a frightening complication of diabetes that we’d like to avoid, how much do we really understand about the condition?
So, let’s start with the basics. Diabetic neuropathy is nerve damage that results from having diabetes. While the condition can affect any nerve in the body, it most often affects the nerves in the feet and legs. The severity of neuropathy can vary depending upon the degree of damage and the length of time a person has had it, but it’s also progressive and worsens overtime.
Unfortunately, about 60-70% of individuals with diabetes will someday develop some form of neuropathy. Risk increases with age, and those at highest risk are people who have had diabetes for at least 25 years.
Understanding neuropathy is crucial. Why? Because it’s the best defense you have. With proper care, people can delay and even prevent neuropathy. Even if you’ve already developed the condition, understanding it can better arm you with the tools you need to properly manage the pain and slow progression. So, let’s get started! Let’s figure out what you do (and don’t) know about diabetic neuropathy!
L.D. and her eleven-year-old lab, Eleanor Rigby Fitzgerald, moved from Seattle to Grand Rapids earlier this year, and are currently enjoying exploring their new city! She likes books, music, movies, running, and being outdoors as much as possible.