If you have foot pain due to diabetic neuropathy, a foot spa can provide some welcome relief. Neuropathy refers to a disease that damages your body’s nerves to the point that you start to lose motor functions and sensitivity to outside elements.
Your nervous system consists of two parts: your central nervous system and your peripheral nervous system. When it comes to neuropathy, we are talking about the peripheral nervous system, which is responsible for sending signals that originate from the central system to designated parts of your body.
Like, your feet!
Neuropathy can directly damage your peripheral nervous system, which negatively affects your sensory, motor, and autonomic nerves. Typically about 8% of individuals over the age of 55 exhibit signs of neuropathy.
Keep in mind that neuropathy commonly stems from patients diagnosed with diabetes, so if you have diabetes, you run the risk of developing neuropathy.
Your feet may be at risk
Out of all the body parts that exhibit symptoms of neuropathy, it most commonly tends to affect a person’s feet. In fact, people with neuropathy feel a loss of sensation in their feet, which leaves them prone to infections and injuries. If your feet feel numb and weak, you may be at risk.
There are medications you can take, but doctors often recommend alternative medicines to help deal with this nervous system condition. Keep reading for an in-depth look at alternative medicinal options that will ease the pain associated with neuropathy.
What is foot spa treatment?
A foot spa treatment is a basic and relaxing in-home remedy that will reduce any foot discomfort. A warm foot soak for neuropathy can reduce both the swelling and tension in your feet through the magic of blood circulation.
While you could certainly go to a fancy spa and treat yourself to an expensive foot soak, there is an easier (and cheaper) way. Home foot spas give you the freedom to soak and massage your feet in the comfort of your home.
My personal favorites are the foot spas equipped with preset features that vibrate and shoot streams of water to effectively massage your feet and bring some life back into them. I also love to combine massage therapies when using my foot spa, such as aromatherapy, to increase the treatment’s beneficial effects.
Here is a great option for a foot spa, straight from good old Amazon:
Benefits of a foot spa for neuropathy
A very common doctor’s recommendation for easy in-home treatment for neuropathy is, you guessed it, a foot spa. Including a foot spa into your daily routine can be a great part of your healthy lifestyle.
Foot baths, in general, are known to be an effective treatment for managing pain as well as reducing stress levels without the hassle of experiencing side-effects that are common with prescribed medications.
Another plus of the foot spa: if you’re already taking drugs that address another disease or illness, a foot soak won’t negatively counteract to produce adverse side-effects. Easy-peasy!
Combining aromatherapy with a foot spa to combat neuropathy
Aromatherapy involves using essential oils to induce certain therapeutic effects that target your feet.
Essential oils to consider
- Lavender: Induces feelings of calmness and relaxation that helps to decrease pain. It also exhibits anti-inflammatory properties that are ideal for reducing neuropathy in the foot area.
- Helichrysum: Widely known for expediting pain-relief, which is ideal for treating neuropathy within a matter of minutes. Expect analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects that will come in handy during a foot soak treatment.
- Peppermint: A cooling agent that functions to combat redness and irritation built up in your feet due to neuropathy. Its smell will enhance your mood and sharpen your focus. This oil is a stimulant, so it’s not recommended before bed.
Correctly using essential oils
Make sure to use care when administering aromatherapy treatment because it’s easy to misuse essential oils.
- Mix 4 to 6 drops of your chosen essential oil with a teaspoon of coconut oil to act as your carrier oil. You could also directly add a few drops of oil to the water in the foot spa.
- Optional: Adding Epsom salts to your foot spa for neuropathy will accentuate the spa’s therapeutic results. In fact, the magnesium found in the salts is scientifically proven to help relax your foot’s muscles. All you need is a a quarter cup of Epsom salts to get the job done.
- As a rule of thumb, the Epsom salt to oil ratio used should measure about three to one. To ensure the salt completely absorbs the oils, you should mix them both in a bowl before dropping them in the water.
- Once the water in your foot spa is ready, you should pour the salt and oil mixture and swirl the water to the point that the salt is entirely dissolved.
Hot and cold relief with a foot spa
When it comes to the water temperature necessary for an effective foot soak, people are torn between hot and cold.
There is no correct answer when it comes to finding the proper water temperature for a foot spa that guarantees optimal pain management results. The best route to take would be to ask your doctor as to which water temperature would best reduce neuropathy in your feet.
Some people like to switch up their foot spa treatment and use warm water one time and cold water the next. Other individuals find hot water to provide soothing effects while still others find iced water provides a slight numbing effect that also works to alleviate foot pain.
Hot relief with a foot spa
Using warm water for a foot spa treatment functions to reduce the pressure that’s causing foot pain, decrease inflammation and swelling, and increase blood circulation. Doctors recommend soaking your feet in warm water for about 20 minutes for a full foot spa treatment.
Your water should reach temperatures anywhere between 92 to 100 degrees Fahrenheit. You don’t want your water to be too hot because you will experience severe burns, which won’t help in treating neuropathy or anything else for that matter!
Cold relief with a foot spa
Using cold water in a foot spa won’t be as soothing as using warm water, but it does provide faster pain relief than a warm foot soak. In fact, you only need to submerge your feet in a cold foot spa for 15 seconds to experience relief
Cold water will effectively eliminate toxins located in your feet causing your body to feel invigorated to the point that may temporarily forget you have neuropathy. How great does that sound?
People typically fill a foot spa full with ice to numb their feet, which helps to reduce swelling and fluid build up. If a hot foot soak doesn’t seem to be doing the trick, a cold one is your next best bet to neuropathy pain relief.
Foot spas for everyone!
For those who have to deal with the effects of neuropathy, you may need to alter your lifestyle to combat the pain your feet have to withstand.
A foot spa for neuropathy is a sure and easy method to ease foot pain without having to deal with the side-effects associated with neuropathy medications. Try incorporating a foot soak into your daily routine and let your feet experience the rest they deserve.