One of the most common symptoms of diabetes is a condition called diabetic peripheral neuropathy, also known as peripheral neuropathy, neuropathy, or diabetic foot pain. If you’re curious to understand more about how long does diabetic neuropathy take to develop, what it feels like, and how you can treat it, keep reading.
Causes of diabetic neuropathy
Not every patient diagnosed with diabetes will also develop diabetic neuropathy; so, when does diabetic neuropathy start, and what causes it?
Diabetic neuropathy occurs when a patient is unable to manage their diabetes condition. As diabetes progresses, a lack of management causes significant changes in blood sugar, which, in turn, damages blood vessels, especially those in the extremities. Over time, damage to these blood vessels compounds, and diabetic neuropathy symptoms develop.
How diabetic neuropathy develops: symptoms you may experience
How long does it take to develop diabetic neuropathy? What are the first symptoms that someone will experience? Diabetic neuropathy may be different for every patient, though there are many symptoms that you’re likely to experience as the disease progresses.
Diabetic neuropathy typically affects the toes first and develops upward through the body. In the first stages of this condition, people may experience symptoms such as:
- Numbness in the toes and feet
- Tingling or a pins-and-needles sensation
- Shooting, electric-like pain
- Cramping in the feet
- Hypersensitivity to pressure or temperature
- Wounds that take a long time to heal
If you or a loved one are experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s important to seek help from your doctor as soon as possible. Learning to recognize the stages of diabetic neuropathy is crucial to ensure that you can obtain treatment at the appropriate time.
Over time, these symptoms will develop further and become more intense. The longer diabetic neuropathy is left untreated, the more likely symptoms will progress from uncomfortable to truly painful. As the disease develops, symptoms will also become much more common — many people will experience symptoms on a daily or near-daily basis.
In the final stages of the disease, nerve damage and nerve death will lead to a loss of feeling or chronic numbness in your feet and lower legs. At this point, many people will also experience a loss of balance, which can result in an increased risk of wounds, infection, falls, trips, and other hazards. By this stage of the condition, most patients will need walking aids and additional assistance to manage their neuropathy effectively. Unfortunately, by this stage, damage is usually permanent with no real possibility for improvement.
Once diabetic neuropathy has developed fully, the result is a total loss of feeling in your feet and lower legs. Again, by the time this happens, the nerves in your feet and legs are effectively dead. During this stage, treatment is almost wholly focused on living with and managing your symptoms rather than trying to improve them.
How long does diabetic neuropathy last?
Right now, there is no known cure for diabetic neuropathy. Once it has developed, you will be managing it for the rest of your life.
However, just because there is no cure doesn’t mean you can’t treat diabetic neuropathy! Effective treatments can help slow the condition to prevent further damage to your nerves and help you manage your pain more effectively so that you can still enjoy a high quality of life.
One of the most important things that you can do to help prevent or manage diabetic neuropathy is to manage your diabetes properly. This means making any necessary lifestyle changes to ensure that you’re eating right, exercising enough, and keeping your blood sugar levels under control. It will be much easier to prevent diabetic neuropathy from developing if you do everything you can to manage your diabetes.
Shop diabetic socks online to help treat diabetic neuropathy pain
Diabetic neuropathy is a serious matter that should be treated with care. Fortunately, there are many treatment options available, no matter what stage of neuropathy you are at. Remember, one of the most important things you can do to protect yourself and prevent further damage from diabetic neuropathy is to take great care of your feet.
One of the must-have elements for any treatment plan is a pair of high-quality diabetic socks. Well-made diabetic socks offer benefits such as:
- Protection and padding to help prevent injuries and wounds
- Moisture-wicking properties to keep feet cool and dry
- Antibacterial components to protect feet from infections
- Mild pressure to help increase blood flow in the feet and lower legs
Here at Viasox, we’re proud to be one of the leading providers of high-quality diabetic socks in North America. Our socks are made from comfortable and functional materials, including cotton and polyester, and designed to fit comfortably on legs and feet of almost every size. On top of that, we’re also pleased to offer a range of fun and funky socks alongside our traditional designs, ensuring that you’ll always be able to find the perfect pair for your needs.
Shop our entire collection online today to find non-binding socks and compression socks in a huge range of lengths, colors, styles, quantities, and sizes. When you purchase with us, you’ll also enjoy fast delivery no matter where you are in the United States.
If you’d like help with making your purchase or finding a specific pair, please don’t hesitate to reach out to one of our friendly representatives today.