September 19-25, 2021 marks Balance Awareness Week. Balance becomes a progressive issue with age, making people prone to falls. Around 69,000 Americans suffer from frequently debilitating symptoms of chronic imbalance associated with a vestibular disorder. Peripheral neuropathy is a condition that involves damage to the peripheral nervous system. Our peripheral nerves carry signals to and from our central nervous system. Hence, malfunctioning of these nerves causes disruption in our body function. Common symptoms include loss of sensation in the limbs, loss of balance and pain in the extremities.
How does neuropathy affect balance?
There are over 100 types of neuropathies with varying symptoms. Diabetic peripheral neuropathy (DPN) is a progressive disease that often involves pain, loss of sensation and weakness. For example, loss of balance is a common sign of diabetic peripheral neuropathy. Additionally, neuropathy patients suffer from uncoordinated and wobbly motion. A constantly high blood sugar level damages the nerves, leading to a decreased or complete loss of sensation, in turn affecting other activities. Moreover, muscle weakness can also lead to soreness in the legs which would affect gait and balance. Since there is currently no FDA-approved medication to treat this condition, managing your symptoms is the best way to handle the progression of the disease. Here are a few ways to improve your balance and gait:
Bathroom falls are common in aging adults. Slippery floors can cause falls in young adults, too. Handrails provide essential grip and support to prevent falls and unavoidable accidents.
Mechanical crutches and wheelchairs can help patients easily get from one place to another. They help to gain an excellent grip and provide strength to sore or weak legs. Additionally, advancements in technology allow patients to customize these ambulatory devices. Furthermore, patients can adjust them to suit their height and body structure.
AI sensors are becoming increasingly popular and help people stay safe in their homes. They are used to sense changes in temperature or humidity. This in turn alerts patients as they can be sensitive to such changes.
Diabetic patients should wear comfortable footwear to keep their feet safe. A small cut or wound can get potentially dangerous and lead to amputations. Patients can also try compressed socks and orthopedic shoes to improve overall gait and balance.
WinSanTor is a clinical-stage biotechnology company focused on the discovery and development of treatments for peripheral neuropathies. We believe in creating a solution that works and brings relief to millions that are struggling with this disease. Learn more about our company, our drug and subscribe to our newsletter.