Disorders Of The Nervous System: Causes, Symptoms & Treatment

In human body the nervous system is considered to be a master control unit, as every minor or major activity and function is controlled by it. The nervous system is made up of complex and intricate network of nerve fibers. This complex system is divided into two major divisions, the central nervous system consisting brain and spinal cord and peripheral nervous system which consists of peripheral and autonomic nerves.

Both the divisions work hand in hand to perform voluntary and involuntary functions of various organs of body. With any damage or disorder to the nervous system, your body will not be able to function properly. There are numerous nerve disorders which may be caused due to trauma, infection, genetic abnormality, degeneration etc. Let us review some important neurological diseases that hamper and disable a person’s daily life.

What Are Some Causes Of Nervous System Disorders?

Neurological disorders can be caused due to various reasons such as:

  • Infections: Infection due to bacteria, viruses, parasites can cause conditions such as meningitis, encephalitis, brain abscess, spinal tuberculosis, etc.
  • Vascular disorders: This is related to damage or dysfunction of blood vessels that supply blood to the nervous system. Hemorrhage, ischemia resulting in stroke.
  • Structural abnormality: The abnormality can arise during development of nervous system in the womb or it may develop later in life. Spinabifida is deformity of spine that occurs since birth. Other occurring later in life includes lumbar and cervical spondylosis, herniated disc, tumors in brain and spinal cord, peripheral neuropathy etc.
  • Abnormal functioning: Headache, epilepsy, seizures, dizziness, etc.
  • Degeneration: Degeneration of brain cells can cause diseases such as Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s disease etc.
  • Many other problems affect normal functioning of nervous system such as alcohol intoxication, electrolyte imbalance, deficiency of vitamin B12 and B1, low blood sugar, etc.

Symptoms Of Nervous System Disorders

The symptoms of nervous system disorder can develop suddenly or gradually depending on the severity, site of brain or spinal cord that is affected, etc. For example stroke is acute and sudden where as Alzheimer’s disease is gradual in onset. Some of the most common symptoms that are encountered in neurological disorders are:

  • Severe headache
  • Vomiting
  • Loss of sensation
  • Slurred speech
  • Muscular rigidity
  • Vertigo
  • Seizures
  • Tingling, numbness, weakness of limbs, paralysis.
  • Loss of vision, blurred vision, double vision, in eyes. It can be in one or both the eyes.
  • Disorientation in time and place. Impairment in registering a thing or recalling of an event, repetition of words and deed, loss of memory.
  • Unsteady gait which may lead to frequent falls.
  • Difficulty in reading and writing due to tremors and jerks.

Treatment For Nervous System Disorders

The treatment of nervous system disorders may vary according to the disorder. However, multiple modes of treatment may be necessary for recovery. In some cases the recovery may be partial after treatment. The general guidelines are:

  • Medical treatment which consists of different medicines that can control and cure seizures, tingling, infection etc.
  • Surgery may be needed if the cause is obstruction due to a tumor or obstruction in the blood vessel.
  • Physical therapy, occupational therapy.
  • Patient should quit smoking and alcohol.
  • Eat foods that are rich in vitamin B12 and B1.

Herbal remedies such as ginkgo biloba, green tea, milk thistle help to alleviate the symptoms in many neurological disorders such as migraine headache, trigeminal neuralgia, restless leg syndrome.

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