My burning, hurting, numb feet and hands have bothered me for years but it was only recently that I received the diagnosis of peripheral neuropathy (PN).
[editor's note: This Self-Help booklet was written in first-person by Sjögren’s syndrome patient Dona Frosio]
I have attended support group meetings and learned some things to help deal with the discomfort. I think my experiences and suggestions (listed below), may be of value to you. I am not saying all the pain disappears, but you may be able to be a bit more comfortable. Treating the underlying disease, Sjögren’s syndrome, will often lessen the problem of peripheral neuropathy too.
The biggest change I made was my shoes. I found that with shoes that accommodated thick fluffy socks I felt a lot less pain. My personal favourite is SAS® brand, Free Time with Thorlos® walking socks. Wearing socks all the time was really a new concept for me too. I thought wearing even 100% cotton light-weight socks at night would make my feet hotter, but they didn’t and even made me more comfortable. Some people get relief from wearing tight socks. Mild support knee highs might be worth a try and I found these the most helpful.
If my feet are really hurting, I first try soaking them for a while in really cool water. I then try to talk my husband into massaging them for a few minutes before I go to bed since this seems to be my worst time of day. Neutrogena® Foot Cream works well for massage and is really good for dry skin too. The massage often gives me several hours of relief. If anyone needs convincing, just read what the Mayo Clinic says, “A massage helps improve circulation, stimulates nerves and may temporarily relieve pain.”