Looking for a Home Treatment for Chronic Neuropathic Pain? Reasons to Give Meditation a Try

Looking for a Home Treatment for Chronic Neuropathic Pain? Reasons to Give Meditation a Try

Could Meditation be an Effective Home Treatment for Chronic Neuropathic Pain?

Meditation is a free wellness tool that you can use anytime and anywhere. And it’s not as complicated as you might think.

It might surprise you to hear that meditation can be an effective home treatment for chronic neuropathic pain. Maybe it doesn’t seem like something that would be an accepted neuropathy treatment, like medications or other traditional approaches to chronic pain.

In fact, there is a type of meditation that is actually considered to be evidence-based. In other words, multiple studies have looked at this method and seen positive results for chronic pain. A program called Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction has been used in many renowned hospitals and medical centers, incorporating a type of mindfulness meditation that focuses on noticing thoughts and sensations without judgment.

There are books and tapes available about this program, but you don’t even need that kind of specialized training to begin using meditation for wellness on your own. All you need is to understand why mindfulness meditation works with chronic pain.

Jon Kabat-Zinn, who developed this evidence-based program, says that when we have chronic pain, there are two things that make us suffer: the physical pain itself, and our thoughts and emotions about the pain that intensify what we are feeling. Our story about the awfulness or unbearableness of the pain builds a layer of tension around it, like wearing a shirt with a collar that’s too tight.

Meditation lets us change the way we feel ABOUT the pain, so that we can be more relaxed and accepting of it. That way, we can experience peacefulness even when physical pain is present.

Those are the reasons why meditation can be an effective home treatment for chronic neuropathic pain. Soon, we’ll discuss some different ways to meditate and how you can find the method that works best for you.

For more information on coping with autonomic neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at https://neuropathydr.com

Treating Chronic Pain with TLC: Why Emotional Support is Vital (and How to Ask for the Help You Need)

Treating Chronic Pain with TLC: Why Emotional Support is Vital (and How to Ask for the Help You Need)

Don’t go it alone. Here’s why accepting support from family and friends is so important in treating chronic pain.

Although it may be a shocking idea, your personal support network may be equally as important to your health as your medical treatment team—or any kind of supplemental therapies.

Why? Because the bottom line is that a positive outlook is the best medicine for good health outcomes. If you are feeling contented and supported in your personal relationships, you’ll be much better equipped to cope with pain when it arises.

Unfortunately, many people find it hard to ask for help from their family and friends. We may have heard the message that it was weak or shameful to be dependent on others.

The truth is that when we are able to accept love and support, we’re better equipped to be as independent as possible in our daily lives.

Make a list of people in your life who have helped you in big and small ways in the past, as well as people that would probably be willing to help now if you were to ask.

Now, think about the things that are making your life the most difficult or stressful right now. This list could be anything from a leaky faucet in your kitchen to a pile of medical bills. Just get it all down on paper.

Finally, begin matching the list of stress points with the list of helpers in your life. Who could come over and fix that leaky faucet for you? Who could help you make phone calls to arrange a payment plan for those bills?

You will find that most of the people on your list are grateful for a chance to help you—they just didn’t know what to do that would be truly helpful. And when your stress level decreases (now that the leaky faucet or pile of bills is a thing of the past), your overall health will be optimized. That means chronic pain becomes less of a burden because you’re better able to cope with it.

For more information on coping with autonomic neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at https://neuropathydr.com

Shingles (Postherpetic Neuralgia)

Shingles (Postherpetic Neuralgia)

Our Clinicians are here to help you with Shingles (Postherpetic Neuropathy)
Including advanced laser & NDGen care, nutrition and your diet plan.

When you were diagnosed with shingles, you thought that as soon as the rash disappeared you would be free and clear…

You didn’t count on the nerve damage and pain you’re still dealing with.

The pain of postherpetic neuropathy.

You’re frustrated…depressed…irritable.

Yes, you know you can take pain medications to help ease some of the discomfort but you don’t want to do that forever.

The good news is that there are other things you can do to help your body heal.  With a little patience, perseverance and the help of medical professionals well versed in dealing with postherpetic neuropathy, like your local NeuropathyDR specialist, you can live a normal life again.

It Starts With Good Nutrition

The human body is a very well designed machine.  If you put junk into it, you get junk out of it.  But if you give it what it needs to function properly and to repair itself, the results can be awe inspiring.

The very first thing you need to do is make sure you’re giving your body the right tools to fight back against postherpetic neuropathy.  And that means a healthy diet.

Your diet should include[1]:

–           Vegetables and legumes to provide B vitamins to promote nerve health.

–           Green, leafy vegetables (spinach, kale, and other greens) for calcium and magnesium.   Both of these nutrients are vital to healthy nerve endings and health nerve impulse  transmission and, as an added bonus, they give your immune system a boost.

–           Yellow and orange fruits and vegetables (such as squash, carrots, yellow and orange bell  peppers, apricots, oranges, etc.) for vitamins A and C to help repair your skin and boost  your immune system.

–           Sunflower seeds (unsalted), avocados, broccoli, almonds, hazelnuts, pine nuts, peanuts (unsalted), tomatoes and tomato products, sweet potatoes andr vitamin E to promote skin health and ease the pain of postherpetic neuropathy.

–           Consider a personalized supplement to fill in any gaps in your nutrition plan.

Foods you should avoid[2]:

–           Excess coffee and other caffeinated drinks.

–           Fried foods and all other fatty foods.  Fatty foods could suppress the immune system and that’s the last thing you need when you’re fighting postherpetic neuropathy.

–           Cut back on animal protein. High-protein foods elevate the amount of  dopamine and norepinephrine which are both tied to high levels of anxiety and stress.

–           Avoid drinking alcohol.  Alcohol consumption limits the ability of the liver to remove toxins from the body and can make a bad situation worse.

–           Avoid sugar.  You don’t have to eliminate sweets completely, just control them.  Sugar contains no essential nutrients.  Keeping your blood sugar level constant will help control your irritability.

–           Control your salt intake.  Opt for a salt substitute with potassium instead of sodium and stay away from preserved foods like bacon, ham, pickles, etc.  Reducing the amount of  salt you eat will help ease inflammation and that alone will work wonders in the healing process.

Talk to an affiliated clinician for a personalized diet plan to help you to help your body to heal with the right nutritional support for postherpetic neuropathy.

Give Your Body A Break by Managing Stress

We all know that stress is a killer.  But few of us really take steps to manage the stress in our lives.  By keeping your stress level under control, you give your body a chance to use the resources it was using to deal with stress to actually heal itself.

Some tips for managing your stress level:

–           Exercise regularly.  You don’t have to get out and run a marathon.  Just walk briskly for about 15 minutes a day, every day, to start.  You can build from there.

–           Employ relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, tai chi, yoga or meditation.  Any of these will calm the mind and, in turn, calm the body and nerves.

–          Find a hobby that will take your mind off your pain.
Ask your clinician for suggestions and make stress management a part of your treatment plan to overcome postherpetic neuropathy. But remember, healing is a process not an event.  Be patient with yourself and start the healing process today.

We hope this gives you some tips to get started on the road to putting postherpetic neuropathy behind you.  Working with your medical team, including your local NeuropathyDR specialist, to design a nutrition and treatment plan tailored to your specific needs is a great place to start.

For more information on coping with neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at https://neuropathydr.com


[1] http://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/shingles/default.htm

[2] http://www.healingwithnutrition.com/sdisease/shingles/shingles.html

Shingles and the Wisdom of Early Treatment

Shingles and the Wisdom of Early Treatment

 

If you experience any of the following symptoms[1]

–           Nerve pain of unknown origin

–           Enlarged lymph nodes

–           Highly sensitive, tingling or burning skin

–           Pain in the left side of the chest and heart attack has been ruled out

–           Pain in the neck or back that begins to radiate down one limb or around your chest

–           Body aches, fever and chills and flu and meningitis have been eliminated as a diagnosis

Contact your physiciuan or your local NeuropathyDR® clinician immediately.  You could very well have shingles even if the rash itself has not appeared.

This is especially true if you are 50 years or older and

–           Had chicken pox at some point in your life

–           Have an autoimmune disease

–           Have any other health issue or significant stress that weakens your immune system

Shingles is not life threatening but it is extremely painful.  And, without proper treatment early on, you could develop postherpetic neuralgia caused by damage to the nerves in the area affected by shingles.   Postherpetic neuropathy can be debilitating and can last for years.  The pain can be so intense that even clothing on the skin can be excruciating.

To lessen the possibility of postherpetic neuropathy, early treatment is a must.

Treatment Regimen

If you actually manage to start treatment before the shingles rash appears, expect treatment with medication first to ease some of your pain. Your NeuropathyDR® clinician will then evaluate your spine and the skeletal system paying particular attention to the area where you’re experiencing pain.

Chances are, your nerves are being affected by misalignments too,  and your NeuropathyDR® clinician will give you an adjustment to realign the skeletal system so that your nerves are not being adversely affected.  That will not only help with your immediate problem, it will decrease the chance of long term nerve damage leading to postherpetic neuropathy.

In addition to a chiropractic and/or physical therapy to realign the spine and support proper functioning of your nervous system, your NeuropathyDR® clinician will advise you on proper nutrition and a diet plan to give your body what it needs to heal.

Stress Management is Vital[2]

Just as you need the right diet in order to heal, you need to get plenty of rest and avoid stress as much as possible.

Your NeuropathyDR® clinician will put together a lifestyle plan for you utilizing stress management tools to help you avoid or limit stress than can make a bad medical situation even worse.  Some suggested techniques are:

–           Exercising regularly.

–           Relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, tai chi, yoga or meditation.  Any of  these will calm the mind and, in turn, calm the body and nerves.

–          Finding a hobby that will take the mind off postherpetic neuropathy pain.

The Final Step in Nerve Protection/Repair

Once you have chiropractic adjustment to eliminate subluxation and provide support for the nervous system, you’re eating the proper diet to support your body and your stress is under control, the final step is repair of any nerve damage.  Talk to your local NeuropathyDR® clinician about our unique treatment protocol. Only our clinicians are taught this.

This allows the nerves to communicate again and that, in itself, starts the process of reversing the damage of peripheral neuropathy.

As an added bonus, the NeuropathyDR® Treatment System for Post-Herpetic Neuralgia can be used in your own home, on your own, once your health practitioner has started the treatment and established a base line for you to build on.

The combination of hands-on care, nutrition, stress management and NeuropathyDR®, employing neurostimulation as one component is showing great promise in helping shingles patients and those unfortunate enough to develop postherpetic neuropathy return to a pain free life, without the long term debilitating effects of postherpetic neuropathy.

Can any of these treatments “cure” shingles? No, of course not.  Shingles is caused by a virus.

However, early treatment at the earliest sign of symptoms will make it much easier for your body to fight off the virus sooner and lessen your chance of developing postherpetic neuropathy.

We hope this information helps you deal with this very uncomfortable illness and the possible lasting effects of Postherpetic Neuropathy.  Having a bit more background information on your illness will help you participate in your care and give you a better chance of a positive outcome.

For more information on coping with your peripheral neuropathy, get your Free E-Book and subscription to the Weekly Ezine “Beating Neuropathy” at https://neuropathydr.com

 


[1] http://www.shingles.com

 

[2] http://www.everydayhealth.com/shingles

What You Need to Know About Shingles and Postherpetic Neuralgia

What You Need to Know About Shingles and Postherpetic Neuralgia

 

What You Need to Know About Shingles and Postherpetic Neuralgia

We'll identify the source of your pain first

You wake up one morning to a red painful rash…

A band of blisters wrapped around your body from the middle of your back around your side to your breastbone.  As if that weren’t bad enough, you may also have

–            Pain, burning, numbness or tingling

–            Fluid-filled blisters

–            Itching

–            Headache

–            Fatigue

–            Body aches

–            Fever and chills

If not for the rash, you might think you were coming down with the flu.  Instead, your first thought is that you’re having an allergic reaction to food, or a new bath soap or even the perfume in your laundry detergent…

But if you are

–            Over 50 years of age

–            Had chicken pox at some point in your life

–            Have an autoimmune disease

–            Have any other health issue or significant stress that weakens your immune system

You probably have a virus called Varicella zoster virus (VZV), more commonly known as shingles. VZV is the same virus that causes chicken pox.  Once you’ve had chicken pox, the virus lies dormant in your system until it’s reactivated by various risk factors and you develop shingles.

And that’s a good news/bad news diagnosis.

Contrary to several old wives’ tales, shingles is not life-threatening…that’s the good news.

The bad news is that shingles is extremely painful and you may experience nerve pain (Postherpetic Neuropathy) long after the actual rash and other symptoms are gone.

If you think you have shingles or that you might be at risk of developing them, this is what you need to know about shingles and Postherpetic Neuralgia:

Is Shingles Contagious?

Yes, like chicken pox, shingles is contagious.  You can pass the shingles virus to anyone who hasn’t had chicken pox.  And how’s this for a twist?  The person you pass the virus to will develop chicken pox, not shingles.

Fortunately, the shingles virus is not an airborne virus.  It’s passed through direct contact with the open sores caused by shingles.  Until your blisters are healed, you are contagious.  Avoid contact with

–            Newborns

–            Pregnant women

–            Anyone with a weakened immune system

How Is Shingles Treated?

Shingles is not life-threatening and, much like any other virus, it will probably resolve on its own within a few weeks.

However, getting to the doctor as soon as your shingles appear (within 72 hours) is the wise (and much less painful) course of action to speed up the healing process and lessen the likelihood of potentially serious complications.

Once your doctor confirms that you have shingles, usually through taking a complete history and physical and cultures from your rash, the standard course of treatment is anti-viral and pain medications to kill the virus and make you more comfortable.

To help the medication work, you need to get plenty of rest, avoid stress and either take a cool bath or use cold wet compresses to ease the itch and pain.

What Are Some of the Complications from Shingles?

While shingles is not a serious illness, some of the complications arising from shingles can be.

Postherpetic Neuropathy

Your blisters go away but the pain remains. Postherpetic Neuropathy is caused by damaged nerve fibers sending exaggerated pain messages to your brain.  Pain medication, antidepressants or even anticonvulsant medications are often prescribed to bring relief from Postherpetic Neuropathy; however, repairing the damaged nerves is more desirable for long term relief.  Contact your local NeuropathyDR clinician to ask about their unique treatment protocol for treating Postherpetic Neuropathy and repairing the damaged nerves.

Loss of Vision

If your shingles erupt around or in your eyes, you can develop serious eye infections that could damage your eyes and result in loss of vision. If you have shingles anywhere on your face, contact a healthcare professional for immediate treatment.

Neurological Problems

Depending upon where your shingles erupt and which nerves they affect, you can develop

–            Hearing or balance problems

–            Facial paralysis

–            Encephalitis (inflammation of the brain)

Skin Infections

If your shingles blisters are not properly treated, you can develop skin infections cause by bacteria.  If the skin around your shingles becomes reddened, warm, firm, or possibly has red streaks spreading out from the affected area, contact your doctor.  You will need antibiotics to stop the infection.

Ramsay Hunt Syndrome

This complication is rare but it does happen.  If cranial nerves are affected by shingles you can develop Ramsay Hunt Syndrome resulting in facial nerve weakness and deafness.  If you have shingles around or inside your ear, seek medical treatment immediately.

How Can I Protect Myself From Shingles?

The best way to protect yourself from shingles is to stay healthy, control stress and exercise on a regular basis.

The shingles vaccine is often recommended for people who are 60 years of age or older and have actually had chicken pox.  Again, this vaccine won’t guarantee that you won’t develop shingles but it could lessen the severity of symptoms. It might reduce your chances of developing Postherpetic Neuralgia.

A word of caution – do not get the vaccination if you

–            Have ever had an allergic reaction to the antibiotic neomycin or any other component of the shingles vaccine.  Ask your healthcare provider what’s in the vaccine before you are             vaccinated.

–            Are receiving radiation, chemotherapy or any kind of steroid treatment

–            Have ever had bone marrow cancer or any cancer affecting the lymphatic system

And by all means, if you know someone has shingles, exercise precautions!

We hope this information helps you deal with this very uncomfortable illness and the possible lasting effects of Postherpetic Neuropathy.  Having a bit more background information on your illness will help you participate in your care and give you a better chance of a positive outcome.

Don’t just live in pain. Call us today at 781-659-7989 and talk to us about treating your shingles & postherpetic neuropathy with our NeuropathyDR Treatment Systems.