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Neuritis


When you say neuritis you can already guess that the word has something to do with the nerves in the body. To put it simply, neuritis is defined as the general inflammation of the peripheral nervous system. Neuritis can actually affect one specific nerve or it can affect different nerves in different parts of the body, so the severity of the disease depends on the affected areas of the nervous system.

NEURITIS SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS

Mainly neuritis manifests itself in the areas where the nerves are affected. There is tingling and stabbing pain in the affected nerves. The pain is usually not constant. It comes in attacks. Some other symptoms are hypoesthesia, and loss of reflexes. During severe cases the muscles surrounding the nerves will loose all feeling. For example, victims of Bell’s palsy have half their faces paralyzed because they loose all strength in the muscles in their face. During severe cases they can’t even close their eyes because they have no control over their muscles.

The two primary types of neuritis are optic neuritis and peripheral neuritis also called peripheral neuropathy. Optic neuritis is often caused by the inflammation of the optic nerve. This inflammation causes pain in the eye, and distorted vision. Thankfully, the condition is not permanent. After 8-10 weeks the infection causing the inflammation should clear up and normal vision should return. However, in severe cases people might actually lose their sight permanently because the inflammation destroys the myelin sheath surrounding the optic nerve. It is important to receive immediate medical attention if you are diagnosed with this disorder.

Peripheral neuritis is caused when certain diseases like AIDS, diabetes, alcoholism and nutrition deficiencies affect the peripheral nervous system. And a mild form of peripheral neuritis may occur if too much pressure is put on a single nerve for too long. When a person is afflicted with peripheral neuritis the symptoms include itching and pain in the affected areas and a general tiredness and feeling of weakness. Sometimes the pain may become so unbearable that drugs are used to deal with it. The cure for peripheral neuritis depends on the disease that causes it, once that is cured the neuritis should clear up without lasting effects.
Neuritis
Image: Neuritis

NEURITIS CAUSES

There are many causes for the different and less prevalent types of neuritis. A bad sprain, or a penetrating injury that puts pressure on the nerves may cause neuritis. Infection from diptheria, tuberculosis, and mercury poisoning can all lead to neuritis. There are certain conditions that cause localized neuritis, meaning they only affect single nerves in the body. There are certain other conditions that affect multiple nerves, which mean they are the cause of polyneuritis. Diphtheria and Bell’s palsy affect single nerves in the body. Porphyria, bacterial and viral infections, cancer, alcoholism, multiple sclerosis, and diabetes are all causes of polyneuritis.

Another serious cause of neuritis is called chronic acidosis, a condition where acid builds up in your blood and in other body fluids. Acidosis is caused by bad lifestyle habits that put undue stress on your body and cause acid to form in the tissues of your body. Normally the body produces alkaline to counter the acid in the body, but when a person has a bad diet and has continuous stress that wears out the body’s nerves the acid overpowers the alkaline. Habits like stressing over every little thing and extreme overwork are the primary causes of acidosis. Nutritional insufficiency can also be a cause for neuritis. Vitamin B12 deficiency is a serious condition and it can cause many problems for your body, not the least of which is neuritis. A simpler and more direct cause for neuritis is a direct blow to the nerve, like a blow to the spine for example, which damages the nerves. If the blow is very strong the nerve may not be repairable.

NEURITIS TREATMENT

The cure for neuritis cases varies. In the case of optic neuritis and peripheral neuritis the specific causes can be treated. However, sometimes neuritis is never cured. For example, if the stress of a person is never relieved then acidosis in the body continues and therefore neuritis continues. On the other hand, if the cause is simple like a vitamin deficiency then that is easily curable with vitamins. Painkillers provide some relief but it doesn’t cure neuritis and prolonged use puts the kidneys and heart in danger. Some people have found great success curing neuritis with diet. Food like carrots, soybean, coconut and sour milk all supposedly help a person with neuritis. The best diet is a whole grain diet, whole wheat, brown rice, raw seeds and fresh milk all help the with neuritis. A steady intake of vitamin B is also good treatment for neuritis especially vitamins B1, B2, B6 and B12. The trouble with most food nowadays is that they are filled with preservatives and chemicals that keep brining acid into the body’s tissues.

Remember, it’s not just vices like smoking that are unhealthy; overwork also puts a lot of stress on your body. Whatever the case, one should remember to eat well and live a healthy life.

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