Coping With Diabetic Nerve Pain

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There are 29 million people living with diabetes in the U.S. right now. Sixty to seventy percent of those individuals will develop diabetic peripheral neuropathy (DPN) at some point during their lives. In fact, DPN is the most common diabetes complications and it’s an increasingly-common problem within the African-American community. There are several ways to prevent diabetes-related complications, but if you’re already one of the millions of people living with DPN every day, here are three ways to manage your symptoms.

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1. Meditate.

Depression and anxiety are quite common among people with DPN since many patients lose the ability to perform simple, everyday tasks, such as cooking, driving and tying one’s shoes. If you’re already taking medication prescribed by your doctor, then by all means, continue to do so, but consider adding meditation to your everyday routine. According to a 2011 study published in the Journal of Neuroscience, people who meditate regularly experienced less pain.

“Not often thought of, meditation can be quite helpful,” Dr. Carter says. “By helping lower your stress levels, it will help your blood sugar control, lower your vascular tone and how tense your blood vessels are [while] improving the blood flow to those nerves as well.”