The medical community describes foot numbness as “peripheral neuropathy” (PN). Damage to peripheral nerves causes neuropathy. The damage arises from any situation of insufficient circulation, by far the most common cause being diabetes. In fact, up to 50% of diabetics suffer from PN. Nutritional deficiencies, prescription drugs, kidney or liver failure, uremia, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, compression of nerves, toxic substances and infectious diseases, such as Lyme disease and AIDS, can also cause peripheral neuropathy. Although many pathogens can cause peripheral neuropathy, the symptoms are the same: weakness, numbness, tingling and pain in the toes, balls of feet, ankles, legs, fingers, hands and/or arms. In severe cases, movement is affected.
Conventional treatment for peripheral neuropathy involves treating the underlying cause, such as the diabetes, and treating the neuropathy with anti-inflammatory drugs, anti-convulsants and narcotics, all of which can cause side effects. Acupuncture relieves pain and discomfort while restoring sensation and helping nerve tissue to regenerate. I use specific acupuncture points depending on the cause of the neuropathy, on both sides of the body as well as in the lumbar or cervical areas. The treatment is very relaxing and patients usually report other health benefits, as well.