Coping with Post-Herpetic Neuralgia (PHN) can be a daunting task, as this chronic condition is often caused by Shingles and manifests in nerve pain that varies from person to person.
In this blog post, we will discover what PHN entails, its symptoms, innovative treatments for the ailment available today and methods of lessening associated discomfort.
What is Postherpetic Neuralgia?
Postherpetic neuralgia (PHN) is a chronic pain disorder stemming from damage to nerve fibers after suffering from shingles infection.
Shingles is a viral infection caused by the varicella-zoster virus, which usually affects adults over the age of 50 but can also affect younger adults and children. When an individual has shingles and the rash has healed, they may develop PHN in areas where the rash occurred.
Symptoms of PHN may include burning, stabbing or shooting pain that can last months or even years after the initial shingles outbreak.
Symptoms of Postherpetic Neuralgia
The most common symptom of PHN is severe burning pain around the area where shingles occurred. Other symptoms may include sensations such as tingling, itching, numbness, or sensitivity to touch or pressure in the affected area. Additionally, patients may experience fatigue and anxiety due to the chronic nature of their pain.
New Treatments for Postherpetic Neuralgia
Recent advancements in medical technology have made it possible to treat PHN with greater success than ever before.
Medications such as anticonvulsants and tricyclic antidepressants are generally used first-line when treating patients suffering from PHN as they can help control nerve impulses that cause pain symptoms. Additionally, topical medications like lidocaine patch 5% or lidocaine cream 5% have been found to provide relief from milder cases of nerve pain associated with PHN. If these medications do not work for you, there are alternative treatments like transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), spinal cord stimulation (SCS), gamma knife radiosurgery (GKRS), physical therapy and occupational therapy available for those who don’t respond to new treatments option available for Postherpetic Neuralgia.
Ways To Reduce Pain Associated With Postherpetic Neuralgia
In addition to medical treatment options for relieving postherpetic neuralgia symptoms, there are some lifestyle changes one can make in order to reduce their discomfort associated with this condition:
Get regular exercise:
Exercise can help increase blood flow throughout your body while releasing endorphins – natural hormones that act as a natural reliever – so try spreading out some light exercises throughout your day. Even just walking around your neighborhood multiple times a week can help significantly improve both mental and physical well-being.
Find stress relief activities:
Stress has been known to exacerbate many conditions including postherpetic neuralgia which is why it’s important to find activities that relax you like yoga classes or meditation techniques!
Eat healthy foods:
Eating nutrient dense foods rich in antioxidants helps strengthen our body’s defense against inflammation which can worsen nerve related conditions like PHN!
Make sure you get enough restful sleep:
Sleep deprivation has been linked with higher levels of discomfort so it’s important to make sure you get at least 7-8 hours per night! It also helps if you keep a regular sleep routine by going bed at the same time each night!
It’s important to remember that Post-Herpetic Neuralgia is unique to each person and the best way to tailor care is by consulting our medical professional doctor at Genesis Pain Management who will assess your individual situation and come up with a treatment plan based on your specific needs. Don’t hesitate to contact us today at (913) 871-9888 for more information on how we can assist.
We want those battling from this condition know they are not alone on their road towards recovery!