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Neuropathic pain

Neuropathic pain is a type of pain condition that’s usually chronic. It’s usually caused by chronic, progressive nerve disease, and it can also occur as the result of injury or infection. It can also be caused by damage or disease affecting the somatosensory nervous system. This condition may be associated with abnormal sensations called dysesthesia or pain from normally non-painful stimuli. It could have continuous and/or episodic components.

If you have this type of pain, it can flare up at any time without any kind of warning or obvious pain-inducing event or factor.

The cause of this condition can be as a result of a number of different factors, including damage to the Nervous System such as Diabetes, Viruses, Injuries, Spinal Cord Injury, Stroke

Typically, non-neuropathic pain (nociceptive pain) is due to an injury or illness. For example, if you dropped a heavy book on your foot, your nervous system sends signals of pain immediately after the book hits.

However, the pain isn’t typically triggered by an event or injury. Instead, the body just sends pain signals to your brain unprompted.

Those with this pain condition may experience shooting, burning pain. The pain may be constant, or may occur intermittently. A feeling of numbness or a loss of sensation is common, too.

It tends to tends to get worse over time too, unfortunately.

About 1 in 3 adults experience this chronic pain. From those, 1 in 5 experience neuropathic type pain.

A recent study estimated that as many as 10% of us Brits experience some form of this crippling pain. By learning and understanding the possible causes of this condition, it can only help you towards making better choices and also find better treatments and ways to prevent the pain from getting worse over time.

What causes this cruel pain?
The most common causes for neuropathic pain can be divided into four main categories: disease, injury, infection, and loss of limb.

Disease
It can be a symptom or complication of several diseases and conditions. These include multiple sclerosis, multiple myeloma, and other types of cancer. Not everyone with these conditions will experience this pain, but it can be an issue for some.

Diabetes is responsible for 30% of neuropathic cases, according to recent results. Chronic diabetes can impact how your nerves work.

People with diabetes commonly experience loss of feeling and numbness, following by pain, burning, and stinging, in their limbs and digits.

Long-term excessive alcohol intake can cause many complications, including chronic neuropathic pain. Damage to nerves from chronic alcohol use can have long-lasting and painful effects.

Trigeminal neuralgia is a painful condition with severe neuropathic painful throbbing down on one side of the face. It’s one of the more common types of this pain and it can occur without any known reason.

Lastly, cancer treatment may cause the pain. Chemotherapy and radiation can both impact the nervous system and cause unusual pain signals.

Injuries
Injuries to tissue, muscles, or joints are an uncommon cause. Likewise, back, leg, and hip problems or injuries can cause lasting damage to nerves.

Although the injury may heal, the damage to the nervous system, one cannot be certain of. As a result, you may experience persistent pain for many years to come after the initial accident.

Accidents or injuries that affect the spine can cause neuropathic pain, too. Herniated discs and spinal cord compression can damage the nerve fibers around your spine.

Infection
Infections rarely cause it.

Shingles, which is caused by reactivation of the chicken pox virus, can trigger several weeks of pain along a nerve. Postherpetic neuralgia is a rare complication of shingles, involving persistent pain. A syphilis infection can also lead to the burning, stinging unexplained pain. People with HIV may experience this unexplained pain.

Limb loss
An uncommon form of it called phantom limb syndrome can occur when an arm or leg has been amputated. Despite the loss of that limb, your brain still thinks it’s receiving pain signals from the removed body part.

What’s actually happening, however, is that the nerves near the amputation are misfiring and sending faulty signals to your brain.

In addition to arms or legs, phantom pain may be felt in the fingers, toes, penis, ears, and other body parts.

Other causes include:
vitamin B deficiency
carpal tunnel syndrome
thyroid problems
facial nerve problems
arthritis in the spine

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