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Autonomic Nervous System Disorders: Symptoms And Treatment

Autonomic dysfunction is an increasingly common disease that is associated with automatic dysfunction of the body such as irregular heartbeat, blood pressure, digestion, and perspiration, etc. Although not dangerous, life-threatening, but if not treated, the disease will affect the patient's daily life. So, to learn more about this disease, let's learn through the article below.

Learn About The Autonomic Nervous System

The autonomic nervous system or autonomic nervous system is abbreviated as ANS from the English name Autonomic nervous system. The autonomic nervous system has a role in controlling a number of automatic functions of the body such as digestion, circulation, respiration, excretion, perspiration, and other activities that are not in accordance with the will of humans. The reason is also known as the autonomic nervous system because the activities of this system do not need to be thought and controlled such as: creating a heartbeat, secreting saliva, or digesting food, …

The autonomic nervous system controls a number of automatic functions of the body such as digestion, circulation, respiration, excretion

The autonomic nervous system includes:

  • Sympathetic nervous system: in the dorsal-lumbar region. The sympathetic nervous system is responsible for stimulating emergency responses when needed. From there, help you be more prepared when facing stressful situations.
  • Parasympathetic Nervous System: located in the skull and terminal segments of the spinal cord This system is responsible for conserving energy and repairing tissues to maintain basic body functions.

The sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems are not under the control of the brain. These two systems are basically opposites, but they are closely related and support each other to ensure a balance for the functioning of the organs in the body.

If one of these two nervous systems is inhibited or reduced, the balance will be lost, leading to autonomic nervous system disorders. For example, if the sympathetic nervous system increases heart rate and blood pressure, the parasympathetic nervous system regulates and slows these processes.

However, the parasympathetic nervous system is responsible for stimulating the digestive and urinary systems while the sympathetic nervous system slows down the factors.

Is Autonomic Nervous System Disorders dangerous?

Although not life-threatening, people with long-term autonomic dysfunction will have a serious impact on mental health and quality of life. If left untreated, it can lead to many changes in the body's organs and cause diseases in the nervous, cardiovascular, digestive, excretory, urinary, and respiratory systems.

Prolonged autonomic dysfunction will seriously affect mental health and quality of life

Patients with symptoms of fatigue, insomnia, physical weakness, and always in a state of anxiety, prolonged stress. Especially both children and adults are at risk, so autonomic neuropathy becomes a disease that makes many people extremely worried.

Autonomic nervous system disorders in children can cause headaches, dizziness, difficulty concentrating, nervousness, and shortness of breath. Children may also experience digestive system disorders such as bloating, nausea, loss of appetite, constipation, diarrhea, …

Therefore, parents need to pay attention and take their children to the doctor as soon as abnormal symptoms appear. Even adults when sick should not be subjective but should go to reputable medical facilities for early examination, diagnosis, and treatment.

Perform check-up if you experience persistent symptoms

The Symptoms Of Autonomic Nervous System Disorders

Depending on the disorder, each patient will present with different symptoms:

  • Systemic symptoms: patients have headaches, fatigue, sleep disorders, always feel anxious, feel chills, neck and shoulder pain, menstrual disorders, etc. People who have autonomic nervous system disorders also often have a slow biological response to light, which can interfere with nighttime driving.
  • On the nervous system: patients often have symptoms of vasomotor disorders causing headaches when changing the time, cerebral circulatory disorders causing memory impairment, poor concentration, and poor sleep. Patients with autonomic neuropathy have anxiety disorders and are often upset for no reason.
  • On the digestive system: the disease causes dysfunctional contractions of the stomach and intestines. Patients have a feeling of loss of appetite, bloating, belching, nausea, diarrhea, and constipation. Some cases even feel full right after eating and are stimulated to defecate when stressed, etc.
  • On the cardiovascular system: patients often feel nervous, restless, fast or slow heart rate, blood pressure increases and decreases erratically. Patients with autonomic neuropathy may also have symptoms of angina pectoris, coronary insufficiency or difficulty in responding to physical activities, etc.
  • On the respiratory system: patients often have shortness of breath due to increased bronchial smooth muscle spasms and symptoms are worse when the weather changes or the patient is stressed. In addition, the patient may also feel short of breath, chest tightness, stuffy nose due to dilation of the nose, etc.
  • On the urinary system: may experience symptoms of urinary disorders such as urinary retention, urinary incontinence, urge to urinate under stress, or incomplete urination. Prolonged symptoms can lead to urinary tract infections.
  • On the excretory system: manifested as sweating disorders. The patient increases or decreased sweating, affecting the body's temperature regulation, causing erratic heat and cold.
  • On the musculoskeletal system: the patient feels uncomfortable limbs, joint pain, especially when the weather changes, the symptoms increase and become more obvious.
  • On the genitourinary system: people with autonomic dysfunction have symptoms of sexual dysfunction causing premature ejaculation, difficulty in erection, and difficulty reaching orgasm in men. In women, there may be vaginal dryness and menstrual disturbances.
  • On the hair and nail: the disease can cause hair loss, nail damage, dry skin and dilation of skin vessels, etc.
  • In addition, autonomic dysfunction is also the cause of diseases such as Raynaud's, cyanosis of the extremities, scleroderma, etc.

Treatment Of Autonomic Nervous System Disorders

Autonomic nervous system disorders include disorders of autonomic nervous system functioning so it is not a specific disease. The disease can cause abnormalities, reducing one or more automatic functions of the body. Therefore, as soon as there are symptoms of suspected autonomic dysfunction, the patient needs to go to reputable medical facilities for timely examination and treatment.

The treatment of autonomic disorders is aimed at re-establishing the balance between the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems

Currently, the treatment of autonomic disorders is aimed at re-establishing the balance between the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems. However, there is still no specific treatment for the disease. The main treatment is symptomatic treatment combined with medical and surgical treatment.

What drugs are used for autonomic nervous disorders? This is definitely a question that many people are interested in. A combination of drugs can be used to relieve symptoms that patients experience on organ systems such as:

  • Sedatives, antidepressants, drugs for insomnia and anxiety disorders, …
  • Pain relievers including acetaminophen and NSAIDs
  • Drugs that regulate bowel movements
  • Drugs that regulate bladder spasms to treat urinary disorders
  • Cardiovascular drugs, heart rate control drugs
  • Medicines to reduce sweating
  • Medicines to treat erectile dysfunction in men, hormonal drugs, vaginal lubricants for women, etc.

Besides, the combination of physical therapy methods is also highly effective in relieving the condition such as sauna, massage, acupressure, hot bath, cold bath,…

Physical therapy methods are also highly effective in alleviating the disease

Doctors also give recommendations on diet as well as activities for patients with autonomic nervous system disorders. Patients should have a healthy, nutritious diet. Limit stimulants such as alcohol, tobacco, coffee, … Regularly exercise to improve health. In addition, patients with autonomic neuropathy should practice thinking positively and breathing deeply to improve their condition.

As soon as there are psychological and mental health problems, patients should go to reputable specialized medical facilities for psychological examination and early diagnosis. That helps you easily control your own health and have effective ways to prevent and treat diseases.

The above information, hopefully, has helped you better understand the symptoms and treatment of autonomic nervous system disorders.

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The site cannot and does not contain medical advice. The medical information is provided for general informational and educational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional advice. Accordingly, before taking any actions based upon such information. We encourage you to consult with the appropriate professionals.