Brandt R Gibson, DPM
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Podiatrist, Neuropathy Doctor, Father of 11 and Founder of Mountain West Foot & Ankle Institute
Peripheral neuropathy, often consisting of numbness, tingling, burning, electrical shocks, or stabbing pain, has been very problematic for many individuals to overcome.  Pain medications are often not successful in the treatment, and night pain is usually significantly more difficult to control than day pain.  What is happening, then, with a man in Freeland, Pennsylvania who is getting improvement (at least short-term) from talking about or watching Phillies baseball?

Over the years, studies have shown some techniques can help neuropathy pain.  Although baseball has never been studies, these other studies may explain the relief he gets.

Meditation: Over the years meditation has been utilized to help either distract someone from chronic pain (even neuropathy pain) or improve the copping mechanisms.  In both cases, neuropathy pain has improved using this technique correctly.

Activity:  Exercise has been shown to improve neuropathy pain (as well as many chronic pain problems).  Even walking the stairs to a seat in a stadium could provide this effect. 

Power of Distraction:  Although no true studies have been performed on this, I have seen on a regular basis the increased pain people have at night.  What is different?  During the day we have lots of distracting stimuli from lights, sounds, activities and even touch.  At night, the lights are out, the house is usually quiet and we are doing very little.  Eliminate the distractions and the pain increases.

What I learn from this simple finding is that if you find your "distraction" that you enjoy and can focus on even with neuropathy pain, you will have an opportunity to improve your symptoms short-term.  To improve symptoms long-term, however, we will need to try other options.
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