Did you know that the pain in your feet and hands could be related to your diabetes? It starts with uncontrolled blood sugar. People with diabetes have high blood sugar levels. And over time this may cause permanent damage to the nerves. This nerve damage may cause a distinct pain called diabetic nerve pain.
Your doctor may have mentioned the term neuropathy or peripheral neuropathy. Neuropathy is nerve damage that often results in pain. Peripheral neuropathy is neuropathy that occurs in the extremities and may cause pain, such as foot pain or hand pain. The most common cause of peripheral neuropathy is diabetes.
Diabetic peripheral neuropathy is diabetes-related nerve damage most commonly felt in the feet and hands, which may or may not be painful. Some people experience this damage as pain, tingling or numbness, while others have no symptoms at all. Diabetic nerve pain from damaged nerves is a unique type of pain that is different from the pain you may experience from a headache, a sprained ankle or arthritis.
More than 29 million Americans are diagnosed with diabetes. About half of them have some form of nerve damage from the disease. Not everyone will feel this nerve damage. But about 1 in 5 people with diabetes feel shooting, burning, pins and needles pain in their feet and hands.
In general, there are 2 types of pain: nerve pain and muscle pain. Muscle pain usually has a clear cause (injury or inflammation) and tends to go away over time. Nerve pain has many different causes. Nerve pain resulting from diabetes is the result of damaged nerves and can be long-lasting.
Remember, diabetic nerve pain symptoms are a result of nerve damage caused by diabetes, and not a result of aging, weight gain, or other conditions.