Charcot Marie Tooth disease (CMT), also known as peripheral neuropathy, is a progressive sensory and motor neuropathy of the central nervous system characterized by complete loss of muscle and sensation throughout the whole body. This neuropathy is the second most common inherited neuropathy affecting almost one out of every two,500 people worldwide.
Charcot Marie Tooth disease is the result of abnormal growths on the nerve roots of the human body. The affected areas are those related to the nervous system like the brain, spinal cord, muscles, bones, tendons, etc. The symptoms include severe weakness, immobility, paralysis, involuntary muscular contractions and spasms, difficulty in walking, numbness, tingling, burning sensation, abnormal sensitivity to light, sound, touch and temperature. In the early stage, patients may show minor changes in movement such as bending and twisting, crawling, or even moving their arms. However, with time, the damage to the nerves may progress and can even lead to death if left untreated.
The cause of Charcot Marie Tooth disease is unknown but it is believed to be due to injury on the nerve roots which causes the damage to the nervous system. However, there is no solid evidence that links this disease to any specific causative factors. Though doctors can not prove the link between this disease and genetics or environment, researchers are trying to find the exact cause of this neuropathy. They are also researching on the possible ways to treat this neuropathy. Thus far, the best treatment for Charcot Marie tooth disease is to stop it from progressing.
There are three types of treatment available to control and prevent Charcot Marie. One is through surgery; another is through anti-inflammatory drugs, and the last is through neurostimulator pills. If left untreated, these medications may further damage the nerve roots and affect nerve function causing further problems.
A surgical procedure called a laminectomy is used for the treatment of this neuropathy. This procedure involves removal of the infected nerve. Though this procedure has been very effective, it is expensive and may not be an option available for everyone.
Anti-inflammatory drugs are available in many forms including creams, gels and injections. Some of these medications reduce pain and swelling but they do not offer permanent relief. Injection of steroidal is another way to treat the neuropathy. These medications can relieve the pain but it does not cure the disease as it only relieves the patient from pain and inflammation but does not correct the disease.
Neurostimulator pills are one of the newest forms of medication that can reverse this neuropathy
These drugs stimulate the nervous system to regrow lost nerve signals so as to restore the normal functioning of nerves. This method also helps in controlling pain and inflammation. This method is not without side effects and some may even result to addictive behavior.
The good news is that there are many natural methods to treat Charcot Marie which does not involve surgery and drugs. A healthy diet, regular exercise, nutritional supplement, proper rest and stress management techniques are essential for the treatment of this disease.
Fruits and vegetables rich in antioxidants are recommended for a person suffering from this neuropathy because these fruits and vegetables are rich in nutrients and minerals. These nutrients help in repairing the damaged nerve cells and help in fighting infection.
Foods need to be processed properly because the enzymes in the food items can destroy the healthy protective coating of the tooth. The nutrients in fruits and vegetables are very beneficial and can help in protecting the teeth. Foods like strawberries, papaya, carrots and papaya juice are highly recommended.
Another important thing to consider is the diet of people suffering from this disease is proper hygiene. Cleanliness and regular brushing is very important in preventing this type of neuropathy.
Good hygiene is necessary to avoid developing plaque on the teeth. Brushing of teeth daily is very important to prevent the build up of plaque and food deposits which can cause damage to the root of the tooth.