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PHYSICAL THERAPY FOR PERIPHERAL NEUROPATHY


Do you experience any pain in your lower extremities that's not relieved by rest, or do your symptoms not resolve over three weeks despite treatment with one or more medications? Then it's time to consult a physiotherapist. Why?


Peripheral Neuropathy
Peripheral Neuropathy

In cases where pain does not resolve for a long time, there are increased chances of injury to the peripheral nerves. Due to injury, peripheral neuropathy commonly targets hands and feet–causing severe pain, weakness, and numbness.


Physical therapy plays a significant role as it helps to ease neuropathic pain and strengthen weak muscles. During the therapy, a therapist uses different physiotherapy tools like stress ball hands, hand strengthens, or electrical stimulation for promising results.


Can physical therapy help peripheral neuropathy?


In peripheral neuropathy, all the muscles supplied by the injured nerve are affected. The neuropathy causes pain, swelling, and numbness in the affected muscles. As a result, they become weak. In this regard, Physical therapy helps with peripheral neuropathy.


Physical therapy provides strength, mobility, and flexibility in the case of peripheral neuropathy. Physical therapy helps in the following ways:


  1. It provides mobility and flexibility through stretching exercises.

  2. Strengthening exercises help to maximize muscle recovery.

  3. Physical therapy helps to achieve movements within a pain-free range of motion.

  4. Balance training provides stability. It also reduces the chances of falls.

  5. The use of orthosis and splints also play a significant role in treating peripheral neuropathy.


What kind of physical therapy is done for neuropathy?


There are different types of physical therapy exercises for peripheral neuropathy. You can perform those exercises to reduce symptoms. Physiotherapy also helps reduce muscle tension and stress as a result of injury.


Aerobics exercises:


Instead of improving the cardiovascular system, aerobic exercises also help to relieve pain. While cycling or running, large muscles are used, which causes deep breathing. As a result, the blood flow increases, which helps to release endorphins.


Endorphin acts as a natural painkiller. So what are you waiting for? Start aerobics like brisk walking or running for at least 10 minutes daily. When you become used to it, increase the timing to 30 minutes a day, three times per week.


Stretching exercises:


In the case of peripheral neuropathy, stretching helps increase joint flexibility. You can also do stretching as a warm-up before other physical activities. Stretching the muscles daily minimizes the risk of injury.


Palm-up: With your palms facing down, stretch your fingers and thumbs up as high as possible. Hold for a few seconds, then slowly lower back to the starting position.


Palm-down: With your palms facing each other, use both hands to push down on the table or other object you're using as support. Hold it for a few seconds, and then relax.


Calf stretch: Stand so that one leg comes before the other. Bend the knee of the front leg slightly. Make sure your heels touch the ground. Hold it for a few seconds.


Hamstring stretch: Sit on a chair edge and bend one knee while straightening the other leg. Bend your chest toward the strengthened leg and hold it for a few seconds.


Nerve Gliding Exercises:


Nerve gliding exercises are used to move and glide the injured nerve in a specific way. It helps to promote healing and reduces pain. But always consult your doctor and ask about the severity of nerve damage before nerve gliding.


Balance training exercises:


Patients also encounter imbalance with the loss of mobility due to pain and muscle weakness. Balance training helps to build muscle strength. It also helps to reduce tightness in the muscles.


Leg Raise: Stand with hip-width apart. Lift one leg off the ground and hold it for a few seconds. Then lower the leg and lift the other leg.


Calf Raise: Just like leg raise, lift the heel of both legs of the ground and stand on your toes. Lower the heels slightly. Repeat it 3-5 times.


Use of physiotherapy tools:


Physiotherapy tools help to perform exercises conveniently. It includes:


Stress Ball Hand:

The role of a stress ball in peripheral nerve injury is to provide compression and prevent further damage to the nerve. A stress ball can be used to reduce swelling and inflammation, which are caused by the injury itself.


Hand Strengtheners:


Due to continuous pain, people avoid using their hands and feet, leading to weakness. Strengthening exercises with the help of hand strengthening build strength in weak muscles.

What is the fastest way to cure peripheral neuropathy?



The fastest way to cure peripheral neuropathy is to stop the pain. The good news is that you can recover from peripheral neuropathy! The bad news is that recovery doesn't happen overnight; it takes time, patience, and lots of effort from you and your doctor.


Peripheral neuropathy is a condition that causes numbness and tingling in your hands and feet. It's one of the most common nerve-related symptoms and can be debilitating. You can stop it in a variety of ways, including:


  • Medications: Painkillers like ibuprofen and corticosteroid injections


  • Physical therapy: It helps to strengthen muscles, increase mobility and flexibility


  • Acupuncture: Acupuncture helps to ease pain by breaking tender points.


  • Dietary modification: Magnesium supplements helps to ease the pain.


  • Changing your lifestyle habit: Avoid such movements that exaggerate pain.



Physical therapy plan with exercises designed specifically for those with peripheral neuropathy so that you can start moving things around (like lifting weights) again as soon as possible.


How does physical therapy fix nerve damage?


Physical therapy is a type of treatment that helps people with nerve damage by addressing the underlying cause of the injury. Physical therapy aims to help you feel better through movement and exercise. You can use physical therapy to improve your strength, flexibility, and overall health.


Fix Nerve Damage
Fix Nerve Damage

When you have nerve damage, it’s normal for your muscles to tighten up or become weaker. Nerve damage can also lead to pain because nerves send pain signals from one place in your body directly to another place in your body without going through the brain first.


Physical therapy helps your body heal by strengthening muscles weakened by nerve damage, improving muscle tone and flexibility, reducing inflammation and pain, and increasing circulation throughout your body.


Final Verdict:


Physical therapy can help with nerve damage by addressing the underlying problem—such as inflammation or swelling—that's causing nerve damage. It also helps to relieve pain and stiffness by stretching muscles and joints, improving flexibility, increasing circulation to damaged areas, and more.


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