Affecting the ball of the foot, commonly the area between the fourth and third toes, Morton’s neuroma is a painful disorder that often feels like you have a pebble under your feet. One of the nerves that lead to the toes may thicken and this causes burning sharp pain. You may also feel numbness or a stinging feeling in the toes. Acupuncture for neuroma treatment is now a popular treatment plan for those suffering from this problem.
What causes it?
A neuroma can develop when the nerve is irritated or compressed. Those who have other foot-related problems such as flat feet, hammertoes, high arches or bunions, have a higher likelihood of getting a neuroma. Women who wear shoes with high heels or shoes that are generally too tight or do not fit correctly can also get this as it puts more pressure on the toes. Some patients who opt for acupuncture for neuroma are those who participate in very athletic activities like running or jogging. Very often, this causes trauma that is repetitive in nature. Sports like rock climbing or snow skiing may require you to wear tight shoes which could increase pressure to the toe region. In some cases, an injury can also lead to a neuroma.
How is it diagnosed?
It is best to visit a doctor or specialist as early as possible. You will be asked about different symptoms and your foot will be carefully examined. Other tests may be required based on the severity of the problem.
How does acupuncture help?
A lot of people believe that acupuncture is a risky and painful procedure as it has a lot to do with needles. On the contrary, it is a calculated, time-tested and proven procedure that involves activation of healing pathways that are naturally found in the human body. When tissues are inflamed and infected for a long time, it slows down regeneration and weakens it. Using acupuncture for neuroma, Chinese acupuncturists can reduce the swelling of the nerves and restore the normal function of the nerves. Acupuncture reduces scarring or thickening of the nerve tissue and thus it gives it a chance to restore endurance and strength. The Medical Director of The Center for Morton’s Neuroma, Janet D. Pearl, believes that the insertion of needles at specified points improves the overall circulation by stimulating the release of neurotransmitters and powerful mediators (growth factors). Dr. Kexin Bao, L.Ac., Ph.D. also believes that acupuncture can reduce nerve inflammation and enhances natural endorphins in the body. He says, along with herbal medications, it may be possible to get rid of the problem without surgical intervention.
When needles are inserted at specific acupuncture points to enhance the overall body circulation as powerful neurotransmitters are activated and released. Acupuncture can also help bring down pain and swelling in the affected areas. Traditional treatments have not proven to address Morton’s neuroma. On the other hand, acupuncture for neuroma offers symptomatic relief and reduce pressure on the neuroma so the swelling can go down.