Peripheral neuropathy is a condition where the nerves that connect the brain and spine to the rest of the body are damaged. While neuropathy affecting the feet is more common the same symptoms may also be felt in the hands.
The symptoms of neuropathy of the hands are a burning sensation, tingling, numbness and pain in the hands and fingers and these are also known as paresthesias. This will then spread to your arms over time affecting sensation and muscle control. This may cause you to lose your grip on certain items even if you think you’re already holding them. You may also experience dysesthesias which is an unpleasant feeling when you touch something. Patients also describe a “glove sensation” when they feel like they’re wearing gloves when they’re not.
There are many causes of hand neuropathy and diabetes is one of the leading factors in many cases. When you have high blood sugar levels it can clog blood vessels and the oxygenated blood won’t be able to circulate to the extremities. This may damage the nerves in your hands.
Alcohol abuse may also be a cause for it because when a person drinks too much alcohol it can cause vitamin deficiency. Because of that the vitamins needed for healthy nerve function may be deficient which then causes damage of nerves.
Overworking your hands or doing repetitive motions all day long can also be the cause of hand neuropathy. One of the types of hand neuropathy is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS). This is when paresthesias are felt in the thumb, index and middle fingers. The tendons in the wrist get swollen because of the pressure in the median nerve. This is becoming a common neuropathy for people because of the use of computers at work.
In cases involving CTS you can get it fixed through surgery. But if you don’t want to go that extreme and it’s not that severe yet you can try some lifestyle changes to help you deal with it. Clean up your diet and eat food rich with vitamins. Avoid unhealthy habits like drinking alcohol and smoking. There are certain drugs available for neuropathy you can try if you have a more severe case. If you’re a diabetic keep your blood sugar normal. You can also try acupuncture and massages to help ease the pain. Consult your doctor now if you think you have the slightest symptoms of hand neuropathy. Catching it early is much better than treating it later on.