Tuesday, 18 October 2022 00:00

How Poor Circulation Can Affect the Feet

Healthy blood flow, which is known as circulation, is an important part of how we live. The purpose of the circulatory system is to deliver oxygen and nutrients throughout our cells, in addition to clearing out waste materials in the body. The feet are often the first parts of the body to notice if poor circulation exists, and they may become blue, cold, or swollen. Some people develop a tingling sensation or their feet may become numb. Poor circulation is often seen in diabetic patients, and this may be a result of hardened and narrowed arteries. Additionally, people who sit for extended periods may develop poor circulation and it is suggested to walk for small amounts of time during the day to provide adequate movement. Mild relief may occur when compression socks are worn and these may help restore blood flow to the feet. If you suffer from poor circulation in the feet, please confer with a podiatrist who can determine what the cause is as well as provide effective treatment options.

Poor circulation is a serious condition and needs immediate medical attention. If you have any concerns with poor circulation in your feet contact Peter C. Smith of Lancaster Podiatry. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Poor Circulation in the Feet

Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs is can be caused by peripheral artery disease (PAD), which is the result of a buildup of plaque in the arteries.

Plaque buildup or atherosclerosis results from excess calcium and cholesterol in the bloodstream. This can restrict the amount of blood which can flow through the arteries. Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs are sometimes caused by inflammation in the blood vessels, known as vasculitis.


Lack of oxygen and oxygen from poor blood circulation restricts muscle growth and development. It can also cause:

  • Muscle pain, stiffness, or weakness   
  • Numbness or cramping in the legs 
  • Skin discoloration
  • Slower nail & hair growth
  • Erectile dysfunction

Those who have diabetes or smoke are at greatest risk for poor circulation, as are those who are over 50. If you have poor circulation in the feet and legs it may be caused by PAD and is important to make changes to your lifestyle in order to reduce risk of getting a heart attack or stroke. Exercise and maintaining a healthy lifestyle will dramatically improve conditions.

As always, see a podiatrist as he or she will assist in finding a regimen that suits you. A podiatrist can also prescribe you any needed medication. 

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Lancaster, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment of Poor Blood Circulation in the Feet

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