Peripheral neuropathy is a common medical condition that can cause irreparable damage to your nerves. Some of the most common symptoms associated with neuropathy are numbness, pain, tingling sensations, and hypersensitivity. These symptoms can be difficult to cope with on a day-to-day basis and may decrease your mobility and quality of life.
Fortunately, there are many ways to manage neuropathy symptoms, from medications to acupuncture. Because diabetic peripheral neuropathy primarily impacts the hands and feet, however, many people wonder if massage is an easy alternative that can help manage neuropathic pain.
So, does foot massage help with peripheral neuropathy? We’ll explore the answer to that question below.
Is foot massage good for peripheral neuropathy? Why it may help
Decreased blood circulation is one of the main causes of neuropathy. Poor blood flow can be the result of anything from a pinched nerve, to a medical condition such as diabetes, or even certain medications and treatments such as chemotherapy.
When blood circulation decreases, it can negatively impact your nerves, especially those in your hands and feet — why so many diabetics suffer from foot problems. Improving blood flow can therefore make a huge difference in managing peripheral neuropathy.
Additionally, loosening your muscles will also help to place less pressure on your nerves, potentially alleviating any pain or discomfort caused by neuropathy. It is also believed that massages help to release endorphins, which can increase your sense of well-being and also minimize any pain you may be feeling.
Are massages dangerous? How to protect yourself from common massage complications
Massage is generally considered a safe treatment and pain management technique, but that doesn’t mean it’s the right choice for every situation. You may want to avoid massage therapy if you:
- Have a bleeding disorder or are taking blood-thinning medication
- Have ulcers, burns, infections, or other wounds on the area you’d like to massage
- Are taking insulin — massage may lower blood sugar levels
- Are pregnant — massage may induce labor or begin contractions
If you are considering adding massage therapy to your treatment plan, always speak to your doctor first to ensure your safety.
Massage tips for neuropathy pain
Does foot massage help peripheral neuropathy? It can, but not everyone can make time for a professional massage whenever neuropathy pain hits. Luckily, just as you can test for diabetes at home, you can also perform effective massage therapy at home any time you need it.
Here are a few tips for making the most out of your at-home massage sessions.
- Roll a tennis ball, golf ball, or a sock filled with marbles along the bottom of your feet or between your hands and fingers.
- Use a fragrance-free lotion to gently massage your hands and feet.
- Place your feet in a tub filled with water and marbles and gently roll your feet over the marbles.
- Exchange gentle massages with a partner or loved one.
- Massage your hands, feet, or other painful areas for about 15 minutes each day.
- Begin your massages by stroking from your wrist to elbow or ankle to knee to help encourage blood circulation.
- Gently massage each finger, toe, and joint on your hands and feet — massaging connective tissue can help to reduce pain and increase circulation.
- Always massage both sides to ensure your body is balanced properly.
- Use gentle stroking and circular motions when massaging for the greatest effect.
Other effective massage techniques include Swedish massage, reflexology, Thai massage, and shiatsu massage. These techniques may be most effective when done by a professional.
Other must-have tools for your pain management plan
Foot massage can help with peripheral neuropathy, especially when combined with other effective pain management techniques. Acupuncture, for example, is a popular alternative treatment option that may help alleviate neuropathy pain. But if you’re searching for a quick and easy way to combat neuropathic foot pain, a good pair of diabetic socks or compression socks could be the best choice for you.
Diabetic socks are specially designed to apply mild pressure to your feet to help improve blood flow and relieve pain associated with neuropathy. Even better, our non-binding diabetic socks offer additional benefits such as protection from injury and infection, antibacterial properties, increased comfort, and padding.
Shop high-quality diabetic socks online today at Viasox
Here at Viasox, we’re proud to offer a selection of fancy diabetic socks made from high-quality materials, including bamboo charcoal, cotton, and lycra. Our socks are specially designed to support the health, safety, and comfort of your feet, whether you’re suffering from diabetes, a recent injury, neuropathy, or just searching for really comfortable socks!
Visit us online today to find a range of socks that includes everything from fun and funky to traditional and demure. Whether you need to purchase in bulk or are searching for a special pair to give to a loved one, we can help you find your perfect match.