Neuropathic pain is a refractory disease that occurs across the world and pharmacotherapy has limited efficacy and/or safety. This disease imposes a significant burden on both the somatic and mental health of patients; indeed, some patients have referred to neuropathic pain as being 'worse than death'. The pharmacological agents that are used to treat neuropathic pain at present can produce mild effects in certain patients, and induce many adverse reactions, such as sedation, dizziness, vomiting, and peripheral oedema. Therefore, there is an urgent need to discover novel drugs that are safer and more effective. Natural compounds from medical plants have become potential sources of analgesics, and evidence has shown that glycosides alleviated neuropathic pain via regulating oxidative stress, transcriptional regulation, ion channels, membrane receptors and so on. In this review, we summarize the epidemiology of neuropathic pain and the existing therapeutic drugs used for disease prevention and treatment. We also demonstrate how glycosides exhibit an antinociceptive effect on neuropathic pain in laboratory research and describe the antinociceptive mechanisms involved to facilitate the discovery of new drugs to improve the quality of life of patients experiencing neuropathic pain.