If you’ve ever sat cross-legged for a little too long, you may know what it feels like for a leg to “fall asleep.” This phenomenon is an indication of poor circulation. When related to body position, the tingling sensation caused by the interruption in blood flow lasts only a few minutes. This isn’t the only way that circulation can be blunted. For some, a pins-and-needles sensation is the norm, along with other symptoms. Here, we discuss what may trigger poor circulation through the legs.
Obstacles to Sufficient Blood Flow
Poor circulation means that blood is not moving through veins as well as it can and should. Blood must flow through all veins as the circulation process delivers oxygen and nutrients to all organs. If the signs of poor circulation develop, a thorough assessment of the problem should be arranged. Poor circulation can increase the risk of other health concerns.
What are the signs? They include:
- Varicose veins
- Swollen feet and ankles
- Leg cramps
- Itchiness, especially over a varicose vein
- Restless leg syndrome
- A sensation of heaviness or fatigue in the legs
What Causes Poor Circulation?
Several factors can contribute to poor circulation in the lower extremities. These include:
Extra weight forces all structures in the lower body to work harder, including the joints and the blood vessels. Blood flow is already working against the force of gravity. When weight increases well over what the frame can tolerate, the lower extremities are under excessive physical pressure and stress. This often leads to the weakening of lower extremity blood vessels and diminished circulation.
Many people realize that diabetes affects blood sugar and is a condition that needs to be managed. Beyond that, it is also important to know that too much glucose in the blood is damaging in many ways. People with diabetes may experience poor circulation, peripheral artery disease (PAD), and diabetic neuropathy, all of which can cause symptoms of numbness and tingling in the lower extremities. This is because high blood sugar damages the walls of arteries and veins, making it more difficult for blood to flow through them.
Circulation is a primary focus at the Minimally Invasive Vascular Center in Laurel, MD. If you or someone you love is demonstrating poor circulation, call (855) 803-MIVC to schedule a consultation and examination to determine why and what to do to improve health and wellness.