Damaged Nerves and Muscles from Accidents and Sports Injuries

Damaged nerves in your brain and spinal cord. It can also occur in the peripheral nerves, which are located throughout the rest of your body.

Your nervous system is involved in everything your body does, from regulating your breathing to controlling your muscles and sensing heat and cold.

There are three types of nerves in the body:

Autonomic nerves. These nerves control the involuntary or partially voluntary activities of your body, including heart rate, blood pressure, digestion, and temperature regulation.

 

Motor nerves. These nerves control your movements and actions by passing information from your brain and spinal cord to your muscles.

Sensory nerves. These nerves relay information from your skin and muscles back to your spinal cord and brain. The information is then processed to let you feel pain and other sensations.

Because nerves are essential to all you do, nerve pain and damage can seriously affect your quality of life.

How do you check for nerve damage?
Similar to testing current flow in a wire, nerve conduction velocity test (NCV) is an electrical test, ordered by your doctor, used to detect abnormal nerve conditions. It is usually ordered to diagnose or evaluate a nerve injury in a person who has weakness or numbness in the arms or legs.

What Are the Symptoms of Nerve Pain and Nerve Damage?

With nerve damage, there can be a wide array of symptoms. Which ones you may have depended on the location and type of nerves that are affected. Damage can occur to nerves in your brain and spinal cord. It can also occur in the peripheral nerves, which are located throughout the rest of your body.

Autonomic nerve damage may produce the following symptoms:

  • Inability to sense chest pain, such as angina or heart attack
  • Too much sweating (known as hyperhidrosis) or too little sweating(known as anhidrosis)
  • Lightheadedness
  • Dry eyes and mouth
  • Constipation
  • Bladder dysfunction
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Weakness
  • Muscle atrophy
  • Twitching, also known as fasciculation
  • Paralysis

Sensory nerve damage may produce the following symptoms:

  • Pain
  • Sensitivity
  • Numbness
  • Tingling or prickling
  • Burning
  • Problems with positional awareness

In some instances, people with nerve damage will have symptoms that indicate damage to two, or even three, different types of nerves. For instance, you might experience weakness and burning of your legs at the same time.

Damage to motor nerves may produce the following symptoms:

 

Neuropathy (nerve damage) Caused by Trauma

Sports Injuries, Work Injuries, auto accidents, repetitive motion injuries can cause nerve damage

Trauma whether by a physical Injury or surgery is a common cause of neuropathy, nerve damage.

Trauma – Physical Injuries are the most common cause of injury to a nerve.

Injury or sudden trauma, such as from automobile accidents, falls, sports-related activities. etc., can cause nerves to be partially or completely severed, crushed, compressed, or stretched, sometimes so forcefully that they are partially or completely detached from the spinal cord.

How can this trauma in injuries damage the nerves?

Broken or dislocated bones can exert damaging pressure on neighboring nerves, and slipped disks between vertebrae can compress nerve fibers where they emerge from the spinal cord.

Trauma can cause pressure neuropathy. This is “pinching” a nerve by putting too much pressure on it. For example, the sciatic nerve may be painfully compressed by a ruptured disc in the lower spine, causing sciatica. Pressure neuropathy is also called nerve compression. 

Entrapment neuropathy (neuralgia, neuritis, pinched or trapped nerve) is caused by physical compression or irritation of major nerve trunks and peripheral nerves, producing distant nerve pain symptoms. Certain sites in the body are more likely to produce nerve entrapment because of anatomical vulnerability that can be created by trauma.

Repetitive stress – frequently leads to entrapment neuropathies, a special category of compression injury.  Carpal tunnel syndrome is an example of repetitive stress.

Cumulative damage can result from repetitive, forceful, awkward activities that require flexing of any group of joints for prolonged periods. The resulting irritation may cause ligaments, tendons, and muscles to become inflamed and swollen, constricting the narrow passageways through which some nerves pass.

Compression neuropathy – pressure on an area can result in an inability to transmit nerve impulses because compression has damaged nerve fibers either directly or indirectly by restricting their supply of oxygen.

Trauma that causes severe muscle injuries can compress the nerve. .It all depends on the nerve compressed.

Benefits of Massage for Nerve Damage

Benefits include pain reduction, tension relief, improved mobility and stress reduction. Deep-tissue massage utilizes slow strokes, direct pressure or friction applied across the grain of the muscles with the fingers, thumbs or elbows. … This technique is useful in treating chronic pain, inflammation, and injury.

Massage or massage therapy is a system of structured palpations or movements of the soft tissues of the body. The massage system may include, but is not limited to, such techniques as, stroking, kneading, gliding, percussion, friction, vibration, compression, passive or active stretching within the normal anatomical range of movement; effleurage (either firm or light soothing, stroking movement, without dragging the skin, using either padded parts of fingertips or palms); petrissage (lifting or picking up muscles and rolling the folds of skin); or tapotement (striking with the side of the hand, usually with partly flexed fingers, rhythmic movements with fingers or short rapid movements of sides of the hand).

These techniques may be applied with or without the aid of lubricants, salt or herbal preparations, hydromassage, thermal massage or a massage device that mimics or enhances the actions possible by human hands. The purpose of the practice of massage is to enhance the general health and well-being of the recipient. Massage does not include the diagnosis of a specific pathology, the prescription of drugs or controlled substances, spinal manipulation or those acts of physical therapy that are outside the scope of massage therapy.

Today, people use many different types of massage therapy for a variety of health-related purposes, such as pain management, prevent injuries, restore a healthy immune system, reduce stress, increase relaxation, address anxiety and depression, and facilitate overall wellness.

The benefits of neuropathy massage therapy

In the United States, massage therapy is often considered part of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), although it does have some conventional uses.  It is increasingly being offered along with standard treatment for a wide range of medical conditions and situations.

While more research is needed to confirm the benefits of massage, some studies have found neuropathy massage treatment may also be helpful for:

  • Alleviate low-back pain and improve range of motion.
  • Lessen depression and anxiety
  • Enhance immunity by stimulating lymph flow—the body’s natural defense system
  • Sports injuries
  • Improve the condition of the body’s largest organ—the skin
  • Increase joint flexibility
  • Pump oxygen and nutrients into tissues and vital organs, improving circulation
  • Paresthesia and nerve pain
  • Reduce spasms and cramping
  • Release endorphins-amino acids that work as the body’s natural painkiller
  • Arthritis
  • Relieve migraine pain

Studies of the benefits of massage demonstrate that it is an effective treatment for:

  • Decreased anxiety
  • Enhanced sleep quality
  • Greater energy
  • Improved concentration
  • Increased circulation
  • Reduced fatigue

Further Reading

http://www.mcvitamins.com/neuropathy.htm?sid=trauma

https://www.webmd.com/brain/nerve-pain-and-nerve-damage-symptoms-and-causes#1

https://www.prevention.com/health/8-signs-you-might-have-nerve-damage/slide/2

https://www.onhealth.com/content/1/nerve_pain_symptoms

https://www.healthline.com/health/peripheral-neuropathy

https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/neurology_neurosurgery/centers_clinics/peripheral_nerve_surgery/conditions/nerve_injury.html

 

 

 

 

 

*Disclaimer: This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting with a qualified healthcare provider.
Please consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your condition.
The information provided is for educational purposes only and is not intended as diagnosis, treatment, or prescription of any kind. The decision to use, or not to use, any information is the sole responsibility of the reader. All trademarks, registered trademarks, brand names, registered brand names, logos, and company logos referenced in this post are the property of their owners.

 

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