Often a result of other conditions, poor circulation consists of the limited flow of blood and oxygen to certain parts of the body. Most often, poor circulation impacts the arms and legs and, by extension, feet and hands. Poor circulation to the feet needs special attention as its symptoms and implications can pose more serious harm to the person.
Because poor circulation results from an underlying cause, there are a number of conditions that can cause poor circulation in the feet. We cover the main causes below, but please note that this list is not inclusive of all possible causes.
Having cold feet can be a symptom of other conditions, and you could just need a pair of socks. However, when you start to notice these symptoms recur and worsen, you should seek medical attention for poor circulation in your feet. Any of these symptoms can point to poor circulation and other conditions, like those listed above. It is important to monitor your own feet to detect any of the following signs of poor circulation.
Many conditions can put people at risk for poor circulation in their feet. There are also lifestyle habits that can make a person more likely to develop poor circulation. Additionally, certain demographics of people predispose them to poor circulation in the feet. People who fall into any of the following groups at risk should pay close attention to their systems and take proactive actions to help prevent or lessen the effect of this condition.
If you suspect you have poor circulation in your feet, a doctor will likely confirm this with a physical examination of the foot. Most of the symptoms of poor circulation are visible on the outside of the foot. The patient should also be able to describe the sensations in the foot to the doctor to help with the diagnosis. The doctor may ask about the patient’s family history, medical history, and lifestyle to help them understand any risk factors that person might face.
Since poor circulation to the feet often indicates other, sometimes more serious conditions, a doctor might conduct more tests to diagnose the cause of the poor circulation. These additional tests include the following:
You should see a doctor when you notice symptoms of poor circulation in your feet as soon as possible. Circulation issues do have treatments, but it is important to know the scope of the circulation problem and prevent future damage or serious, life-threatening conditions.
Once a patient and their doctor establish the cause of the circulation issues and develop a treatment plan, the person will be able to manage the pain and any other symptoms. You may need to continue seeing specialists related to the underlying causes of the poor circulation in the foot.
The treatment for poor circulation in the feet can take many forms, depending on the person’s situation and other medical conditions that need treatment. Once the treatment for the underlying causes of the swelling is established, people may find the swelling to go away. However, it is likely that people may need to make lifestyle changes to help reduce the pain as well.
Examples of treatments for poor circulation in the foot include the following:
If you see a doctor as soon as you notice symptoms of poor circulation develop, you can more effectively manage any related conditions. The outlook when you properly treat poor circulation is positive. Incorporating lifestyle changes can make a person more active and healthier. However, untreated poor circulation can lead to very serious affiliations. These may not be easily treated if too much time goes by. You should take poor circulation very seriously. It is important to be proactive about this aspect of your health, as you can help prevent any worst-case scenarios.