General suggestions for coping...
Updated: Monday, March 08, 2004 12:16:28 PM
- Try to keep busy, especially those activities which occupy the mind.
- Coffee, tea and other caffeine products aggravate the symptoms.
- Thinking about other things helps as much as anything else. One woman realized she just
forgot to notice it.
- If you find a comfortable spot, don't move. If you need anything, ask someone else to
get it for you.
- Wear flexible braces at night on the hands/wrists. Braces, like those for carpal tunnel,
are inexpensive at drug stores. During the summer they are hot and sweaty, but do work!
- Park closer to stores after obtaining a handicapped license tag for the car.
- Smoking cigarettes seems to make it worse as well.
- Use the electric carts in stores; they help when walking or balance is affected.
- Inspect your hands and feet often for small cuts, signs of infection, blisters, etc. You
may not have even felt the damaging event.
- Typing is easier than writing when neuropathy affects the hands.
- Even with all the tricks, you may need to stop, rest, and elevate your feet periodically
- It is possible to get a job-related disability, either short term or long term, based
upon severity of neuropathy. Check with your local Social Security office, your physician,
or your disability insurance administrator.
- A resource for adaptive devices is the non-profit group Infinite Potential Through
Assistive Technology ( http://www.infinitec.org )
to help people with disabilities and their families through life enhancing technology. No
phone number was given on the web site. Although some suggestions and devices are for
those who are more severely impaired (loss of hearing or sight, paraplegia or
quadriplegia, etc.), some are useful for those with arthritis and peripheral neuropathy.
For example, a list of companies which have catalogs for items to adapt for kitchens is http://www.infinitec.org/live/kitchens/catalogsaids.htm