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What is the Cause of Your Diabetic Leg Pain?

Do you ever experience a pins-and-needles sensation in your legs? How about numbness or weakness? If you’ve answered yes to either of these questions and you’re also suffering from diabetes, the culprit may be diabetic neuropathy. Diabetic neuropathy, also known as diabetic nerve pain, happens when nerves are damaged because of diabetic complications. With one in five diabetic individuals experiencing diabetic neuropathy, it is important to be tested for this complication.

What are Symptoms of Diabetic Leg Pain?

Depending on the nerves affected, the symptoms for diabetic nerve pain can vary. Typically, discomfort starts with tingling or numbness, but the sensation can escalate to throbbing, shooting, or burning pain. Though these sensations often begin in the legs and feet, they can spread to the hands and arms, often worsening at night.

Other symptoms of diabetic neuropathy can include:

  • Cramps
  • Increased sensitivity to touch
  • Muscle weakness
  • Decreased balance and coordination
  • Loss of reflexes, especially in the ankle

In more serious cases, diabetic neuropathy can lead to issues with your digestion, urinary tract, and cardiovascular health. Because of this, it is important to talk to your doctor or pain specialist as soon as you start experiencing symptoms.

Is Diabetic Leg Pain Treatable?

Though there is no known cure for diabetic neuropathy, slowing diabetes and associated neuropathy symptoms start with healthy eating, exercising regularly, and maintaining optimal blood sugar levels. Smoking and alcohol abuse can also contribute to the condition, so it’s important to stop those habits. Additionally, there is a number of alternative nerve pain management treatment options available that focus on slowing the progression of the disease, managing complications, and relieving the pain associated with nerve damage.