AskNadia: My Husband is Feeling Discouraged from Peripheral Neuropathy Pain

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Dear Nadia,

My husband has neuropathy and is in much pain. He has tried many things to relieve the pain and has little success. He now blames himself which depresses him. I do not know how to help him.

Anne

 

Research shows that fifty percent of people with diabetes can suffer from neuropathy. The National Institute of Health (NIH) reports that people with diabetes and neuropathy suffer from a higher rate of depression. 

 

When I have spoken to subscribers with neuropathy, they tell me their chronic pain is debilitating to the point of hopelessness. Imagine feeling no relief in sight; how can you not feel victimized by your condition? The pain it causes has been described as walking on pins and needles or shooting pain that is paralyzing. 

 

If your husband experiences hypersensitivity to touch, the bed sheets can irritate him making it difficult to get a good night’s rest. Also, a colder change in temperature in the bedroom can send the wrong nerve signal increasing discomfort.

 

Blaming Yourself

Blaming yourself for your condition will not improve your mental health. It only adds stress to an already difficult situation. 

Thinking positively about your neuropathy does not mean wearing rose-colored glasses. It makes you feel hopeful, inspiring you

to keep trying different remedies until you find the one that works for you. It all starts with positive self-talk.

 

How Do You Get Started With Positive Talk?

Let me share how I coach people with diabetes to look at their condition from a different perspective.

Negative thought:

I will never stop feeling this horrible pain

Positive thought:

There are more remedies out there that I can try.

Negative Thought:

Why Bother? Nothing will help me.

Positive Thought:

I like the idea of feeling better. 

Negative Thought:

 The pain is so bad I want to die.

Positive Thought:

I can work on decreasing my discomfort while gene therapy becomes available, a treatment that will regenerate my DNA.

 

Coping with Chronic Pain

You can help your husband find the best remedy by encouraging him to try different solutions.

Here are some suggestions for traditional and alternative therapies that may offer him the relief he desperately needs

Remember to look at the Medications Treatments Used for Neuropathy chart from 2021. We are updating it this year to add the newest approved medications and devices.

 

Traditional Therapy Options for Neuropathy Pain

 

Amitriptyline– used for neuropathy pain and prescribed for depression.

This medication works by interfering with the nerve signaling process, preventing you from feeling pain.

Capsaicin Cream– derived from Chili peppers, is available as a topical cream or patch. It can be purchased over the counter or by prescription, depending on the strength of the cream.

The topical pain relieving cream works by impeding the nerves from signaling pain to the brain.

Proclaim™ XR –  medical device with a generator implanted near your stomach or buttocks and wires between your spinal cord and vertebrates. 

It works by altering the nerve signal before it gets to the brain.

Tramadol– an opioid medication used as a painkiller, is commonly prescribed only when other therapy options fail due to its addictive nature.

Alternative Peripheral Neuropathy Treatments

Medicinal Marijuana– Research shows that Cannabis therapy is similar to painkillers, benefiting people with peripheral neuropathy due to the mechanism in which the cannabinoid receptors respond in the brain.

Acupuncture– works by stimulating the nerves with needles to generate natural pain-relieving endorphins from the pituitary glands to alter your mood.

 

I hope one of these options will help your husband regain his quality of life.

 

Source:

NIH

The Neuropathy Journal

NIH. U.K

NCBI

Cannabinoids for Neuropathic Pain

Structure of a Cannabinoid Receptor

Acupuncture Improves Neuropathy

 

Disclaimer:

Nadia’s feedback on your question is not intended to initiate or replace your healthcare professional’s therapy or advice. Please check in with your medical team to discuss your diabetes management concerns.

Ask Nadia and receive her unique perspective on your question.

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About Nadia:

Founder Editor-in-Chief Nadia Al-Samarrie is a patient advocate. She helps people with diabetes make informed decisions to prevent the devastating effects of diabetes complications.

Nadia has received 25 nominations for her work as a diabetes advocate. She has been featured on ABC, NBC, CBS, and other major cable networks. Her publications, medical supply business, and website have been cited, recognized and published on Yahoo, in the San Francisco Chronicle, The Wall Street Journal, Ann Landers advice column, former Chrysler chairman Lee Iacocca, Entrepreneur magazine, Houston News, Phili.com, Brand WeekDrug Topics, and many other media outlets.

 

 

 

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