We need blood circulating through ourbody normally in order to be healthy and function properly. Additional research is needed to determine whether these benefits also occur in people with PAD. Poor circulation in your hands can make it difficult to do normal activities. Seek immediate medical care if you develop any warning signs or symptoms in one of your hands or feet, including: * Sudden, severe pain. Overweight or obese individuals who experience poor circulation in the hands can easily control this problem through adequate weight control, changing eating habits, and exercising regularly. This can give rise to symptoms such as tingling numbness, feeling of pins and needles, cold fingers and toes, and cramps in the extremities. We know that our muscles and the elasticity of our blood vessels aid in this process as well. Combining these two methods forces blood to circulate throughout the body or a specific body part. The sensation of coldness, numbness, and tingling can also be appreciated. Generalized conditions resulting in poor circulation, such as atherosclerosis or peripheral artery disease, can sometimes lead to poor circulation in the hands. General recommendations from the American Heart Association include 3: * Limit saturated and trans fats. This natural response can further limit blood flow in the setting of existing poor circulation. Women with completely normal circulation tend to have colder hands and feet than men. Seek immediate medical care if you develop any warning signs or symptoms in one of your hands or feet, including: Reviewed and revised by: Tina M. St. John, M.D. Blood carries heat from the core outward toward other parts of the body. Peripheral artery disease (PAD) accounts for most cases of poor circulation in the hands and feet 3. When your limbs can’t get enough blood, your hands or feet may feel cold or numb. Stop Smoking. Emily Lunardo studied medical sociology at York University with a strong focus on the social determinants of health and mental illness. The arteries of your extremities normally constrict when exposed to cold temperature to conserve body heat. The levels of cholesterol and other fats in your blood influence the development and growth of plaques in the arteries, including those that supply your arms, legs and heart. If you’re light-skinned, your legs might get a blue tinge. Poor circulation in feet is often the sign of another medical health issue that prevents the proper circulation of blood to the distant extremities. Smoking restricts blood flow as it constricts blood vessels. by Ha Min-seo — Last updated: 2011-01-12 . This is made even worse if you suffer from a poor circulatory condition. The condition occurs due to fatty deposits called plaques in the arteries that impair blood flow to the extremities, possibly causing cold hands and feet and other symptoms 4. It can have side effects that range from minor cold hands and feet to more serious ailments such as pain in the legs or irregular heartbeat. Dr. Marchione and the doctors on the Bel Marra Health Editorial Team are compensated by Bel Marra Health for their work in creating content, consulting along with formulating and endorsing products. Limit sweets and sugar-sweetened beverages. Lack of exercise: Most people think that the heart is solely responsible for circulating blood throughout the body, but this isn’t true. If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately. She is a registered Zumba instructor, as well as a Canfit Pro trainer, who teaches fitness classes on a weekly basis. Poor circulation in the hands can occur when you have poor circulation overall. Muscle cramps: Decreased blood flow in the hands can result in muscle cramping. Eating too many saturated fats can promote cholesterol deposits and plaque buildup. It is due to inflammation of tendons surrounding the membrane, resulting in pressure on the median nerve and symptom development. Cubital tunnel syndrome presents when the ulnar nerve found at the elbow is stretched, which can impair circulatory function. A visit to your healthcare provider is the first step to determine the cause of your cold hands and feet 4. Raynaud’s symptoms may also be seen in other distant parts of the body, such as the nose and toes. In the meantime, you might consider massage therapy as part of your treatment plan if your healthcare provider determines that it is safe for you. The possible reasons for this poor circulation, however, are diverse. A small study conducted among 36 healthy but sedentary young adults demonstrated improved blood flow for up to 72 hours after 30 minutes of Swedish massage, as reported in the June 2014 issue of the "Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation." Hands and feet cold 4? Hydration: Drinking between 1.5 to 2 liters of water a day is important for keeping the body well hydrated. Many problems cause poor circulation, but you can treat the condition in a variety of ways. Signs & Symptoms of Low Blood Circulation. Peripheral artery disease (PAD) accounts for most cases of poor circulation in the hands and feet 3. Several noncirculatory medical disorders, such as anemia and hypothyroidism, can also provoke this symptom. If you have poor circulation in your feet, it’s important that you get up and walk around every hour, as well as partake in other activities. There are other causes that are more specific to this body part. Cold water constricts blood vessels. This is true for your hands and fingers as well. Exercising as little as 30 minutes a day can improve flow significantly. Therefore, eating a heart-healthy diet is an important aspect of PAD treatment. Weight gain is actually one of the most common causes of the condition. Choose to drink green tea instead, as it is known for boosting blood circulation rather than inhibiting it. Similarly, it's important to avoid secondhand smoke. Prepare massage oil with a ratio of 25 to 30 drops per two ounces respectively, then massage to relieve the area of poor circulation. Talk with your doctor if you have questions or concerns about your treatment. It is also a good idea to limit the amount of sugar, salt, and processed foods in the diet, as they can have an effect on blood circulation, Essential oil massage: Poor circulation can be adequately treated with an essential oil massage. Tingling sensation or numbness: This may feel like a strange stinging sensation in your hand. Poor circulation in feet: Causes, symptoms, and treatment, Poor leg circulation improved with a restored blood flow better than with exercise. When people comment on your cold hands after shaking hands with you, if your cold feet are noticeable in bed or if you have numbness or tingling in your hands and feet, your circulation is probably poor. If atherosclerosis goes untreated for a long period of time, it may increase the risk of stroke development. Poor circulation in hands and feet . The levels of cholesterol and other fats in your blood influence the development and growth of plaques in the arteries, including those that supply your arms, legs and heart. Avoid stimulants: This includes coffee, tea, and alcohol, which can have an immediate effect on the blood. Exercise: Exercising daily can help dilate blood vessels and improve blood flow. Cracked skin: Poor blood circulation to the hand cuts off vital oxygen and nutrients to the skin, leading it to become overly dry and start to peel. So, if you find yourself suffering from poor circulation, don’t simply shake it off as no big deal. Arteriosclerosis: A medical condition that results from excessive plaque buildup in the arteries. When you have poor circulation in your extremities, it means you are not getting enough blood flow. If you let it go long enough without treatment, poor circulation may lead to some pretty severe health issues. If taken in excess, they can interrupt blood circulation. Most often, we feel numbness in ourextremities whenever we suffer … Hands may also feel cold more often. Raynaud’s disease: During times of stress or in response to cold temperatures, the blood vessels in the hand narrow, restricting blood flow. While most cases of poor circulation have prominent effects on the legs and feet, the hands are not immune. Depending on the severity of the disease, your doctor might recommend supervised exercise with a physical therapist or a home exercise program. There are a number of common ways you can improve poor circulation. When you discover the main cause of poor circulation in your body, it will not be difficult to treat it. Your doctor might recommend one or more medications, depending on your individual circumstances. Poor circulation means that your heart is not able to properly pump your blood, which can lead to much bigger problems than your legs falling asleep. Those who live a sedentary lifestyle go through long periods of inactivity, leading to poor circulation in the hands. Carpal tunnel syndrome can lead to increased volume from swelling, creating poor circulation in the hands. By staying active, we utilize all three of these blood-propelling methods, helping to ensure proper circulatory system functioning. It’s recommended to use rosemary essential oil mixed with a carrier oil, such as olive or almond. If you’re light-skinned, your legs might get a blue tinge. Carpal tunnel syndrome: This is another common cause of poor circulation. This condition results in pain, tingling, and numbness in the palm, thumb, index, and middle fingers that comes and goes. Quit smoking: A well-known cause of poor health and circulatory problems. This is because the condition is not only restricted to the hands, but can also affect other body parts. She's covered business for newspapers and magazines, including the "Greenville News," "Success Magazine" and "American City Business Journals." In cases where blood supply is compromised, grip strength is often affected. As we have already said, it is important to discover the major cause of poor circulation in your legs, feet and hands. It can have side effects that range from minor cold hands and feet to more serious ailments such as pain in the legs or irregular heartbeat. So, while it’s safe to assume that exercise is helpful for circulation issues in places such as your legs, it may seem strange to do exercises with your hands. Make sure to cover these parts of your body when exposed to cold temperatures. All Rights Reserved.. Poor circulation in hands: Causes and how to improve it, Poor circulation treatment: How to improve blood circulation. Poor circulation in hands and feet means there is not enough circulation of blood in the extremities which is required for healthy living of body cells and tissues. Blood thinner treatment with aspirin and/or clopidogrel (Plavix), Cholesterol therapy with a statin medication, Cilostazol, a medication that dilates blood vessels, Extremely cold skin, significantly cooler than the other hand or foot, Very pale, mottled or bluish skin coloration. Additional research is needed to determine whether these benefits also occur in people with PAD. The condition occurs due to fatty deposits called plaques in the arteries that impair blood flow to the extremities, possibly causing cold hands and feet and other symptoms 4. Hot water dilates blood vessels, promoting circulation. This can give rise to symptoms such as tingling numbness, feeling of pins and needles, … This accumulation narrows the arteries and restricts blood flow. Signs and symptoms of poor circulation in feet and treatment option for poor circulation depends on the condition causing it. Massage therapy may temporarily improve blood flow to your extremities. On any matter relating to your health or well-being, please check with an appropriate health professional. Blood Circulation in Our Body. It focuses pressure on points that correspond to the largest and most accessible arteries in the upper extremities. Opt for whole rather than refined grains. General recommendations from the American Heart Association include 36: Your doctor may offer more specific recommendations based on your specific circumstances, such as whether you have diabetes or high blood pressure, or if you are carrying extra body weight. Ray holds a journalism degree and teaches writing, career development and an FDIC course called "Money Smart. You might assume poor circulation is to blame -- a reasonable thought but not neccessarily accurate. Treatment of Poor Circulation. Poor circulation in hands and feet means there is not enough circulation of blood in the extremities which is required for healthy living of body cells and tissues. 1 Comment. This may lead to nerve damage called diabetic neuropathy in later stages. Cubital tunnel syndrome: This condition often resembles carpal tunnel syndrome, but it’s located in the elbow rather than the wrist. Linda Ray is an award-winning journalist with more than 20 years reporting experience. It enhances the performance of your circulatory system, including improved heart fitness and blood vessel responsiveness to changing oxygen demands. Special Report: Secret of Healthy Digestion and Regularity, Get this report FREE when you opt in for our FREE Health eTalk daily newsletter along with exclusive offers from Bel Marra Health and third party partners, Home » Heart Health » Poor circulation in hands: Causes and how to improve it. Treatment of poor circulation in the feet. Causes, symptoms, and treatment for orange urine, Getting rid of eye floaters: Home remedies and exercise. This may include salmon and avocados. What is causing a clicking sound when I swallow? Regular exercise helps improve your circulation via several interconnected mechansims. Are Cold Purple Feet Caused by Bad Circulation? Hydrotherapy: The use of hot or cold showers is known to help promote blood circulation. Over time, this may become permanent, leading to increased blood pressure and cardiovascular problems. So, what can you do for poor circulation treatment? Nicotine, for example, is known for increasing heart rate and raising blood pressure. What are the Effects of Smoking on the Cardiovascular System? Exercise also helps with weight, blood pressure and cholesterol management, all of which can contribute to PAD. Emily practices healthy habits in her own life as well as helps others with their own personal health goals. Acupressure: A therapy that applies steady pressure for about 30 seconds to a specific point on the arms and hands. Antioxidant rich food such as pomegranate and oranges are also beneficial for improving circulation. Smoking cessation will not complete reverse PAD but can lead to improvement, and slow or halt disease progression. Eat a variety of fruits, vegetables, nuts and beans. Poor circulation in hands and feet does not only affect your extremities but it’s merely a symptom of much more serious disorders enveloping your whole body. Poor circulation is a health issue that afflicts many of us. Related: Poor circulation treatment: How to improve blood circulation. Foods to eat: Foods that contain high amounts of omega-3’s are known for promoting blood circulation and the cardiovascular system. If poor circulation is responsible, several measures might be recommended to improve blood flow in your extremities. The statements herein have not been evaluated by the Foods and Drugs Administration or Health Canada. Signs of Poor Circulation. Regular exercise helps improve your circulation via several interconnected mechansims. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Exercise for Intermittent Claudication, Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Connective Tissue Reflex Massage for Type 2 Diabetic Patients with Peripheral Arterial Disease: Randomized Controlled Trial, Circulation: 2016 AHA/ACC Guideline on the Management of Patients With Lower Extremity Peripheral Artery Disease: A Report of the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association Task Force on Clinical Practice Guidelines, Reviews in Cardiovascular Medicine: The Relationship of Cigarette Smoking to Peripheral Arterial Disease, American Heart Association: Diet and Lifestyle Recommendations, Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation: Massage Therapy Restores Peripheral Vascular Function After Exertion. There are many methods that may help you in treating poor circulation. Per guidelines from the American College of Cardiology and American Heart Association, these might include 36: Surgery or a procedure to reestablish adequate blood flow may be recommended for people with severe PAD. Signs of Poor Circulation. Despite this condition stemming from the elbow, symptoms of poor circulation can reach the hands. By reading this oneHOWTO article to on how to improve circulation in hands and feet we'll look at what might be the cause and how we can improve your blood flow. However,if this is not possible, for any given reason, our body will let usknow that something is wrong. Your doctor might recommend one or more medications, depending on your individual circumstances. Traditional medicine is focused on merely managing the symptoms of the condition and not the underlying reasons. Weight gain: Excess body fat can compress blood supply to the hands, leading to poor circulation. This is often appreciated as a blue discoloration of the fingertips. Smoking and drug abuse: The active ingredients in cigarettes and certain drugs can have powerful effects on out blood vessels. Copyright© 2020 BelMarraHealth. No statement herein is to be construed as a diagnosis, treatment, preventative, or cure for any disease, disorder or abnormal physical state. Diabetes: A metabolic condition of impaired glucose utilization, diabetes can be responsible for impaired circulation over time. To understand why you might have poor circulation, you need to take a look at its symptoms and causes. When your limbs can’t get enough blood, your hands or feet may feel cold or numb. Approximately 75 percent of PAD is due to smoking, according to a 2004 "Reviews in Cardiovascular Medicine" article 5. Keeping your hands and feet warm with gloves, mittens, socks and footwear appropriate for the weather can help prevent this situation 4. 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