For many, pain is a natural part of aging. Many people assume that there is nothing to be done about neuropathic pain in the elderly. There are some conventional medical options for pain treatment, but they often come with extensive risks like addiction and impaired organ function. The good news is that natural remedies to ease neuropathy pain can help eliminate the need for these drugs by offering an effective alternative.
What is Neuropathy and What Causes Neuropathy Pain
Neuropathy refers to the damaged function of the peripheral nervous system that controls movement and feeling in the body. The peripheral nervous system is separate from the central nervous system that is responsible for vital organ functions and breathing. The central nervous system often remains unaffected in the aging while the peripheral nervous system becomes compromised.
Symptoms of neuropathy can include:
• Tingling (called paresthesia in the medical community)
Different natural remedies can treat the various symptoms of neuropathy, but for this article, we will focus specifically on the best natural treatments for neuropathic pain.
Cold water immersion, sometimes called “cold therapy,” is the practice of immersing yourself in cold (sometimes near-freezing) water for several minutes at a time. The shock to the nervous system creates a fascinating cascade of physiological responses within the immune and nervous systems, releasing, among other chemicals, painkilling hormones that reduce the pain. The internet is rife with testimonials from pain sufferers who have experienced enormous benefits from cold therapy.
Smoking contributes to neuropathy by inflaming the nervous system and choking oxygen supply through the body by constricting blood vessels. The science is clear: quitting smoking can dramatically improve nervous system function.
Exercise is a proven method for improving neuropathy. Even moderate exercise regimens with mild cardio activity can go a long way towards restoring your nervous system to optimal function and reducing neuropathic pain.
Eastern spiritual practices have gained new steam among the medical community on the backs of many studies that have shown significant cognitive and physical benefits for practitioners of meditation. Specifically, studies confirm what ancient practitioners knew and passed down through generations: Meditation actually reduces neuropathy by calming the nervous system. In addition, meditation can help lower the stress that pain often causes, a significant “rider” effect that can also harm your health.
Another ancient practice, acupuncture has been practiced for thousands of years, originally in China. The Chinese who developed it said that it balanced the body’s energy. In modern medical language, acupuncture works by stimulating the nerves. This increases blood flow and helps with pain reduction.
Cayenne pepper is a potent source of capsaicin, the spicy compound that gives pepper their hotness. All peppers have some amount, but cayenne peppers have large quantities. There has been significant research into capsaicin’s unique painkilling properties. Many people find relief from neuropathy with the addition of cayenne pepper to their diets.
These are the best natural practices and substances that can help you recover from neuropathy.