What Are the Symptoms and Causes of Poor Circulation?


Your body’s blood circulation system is accountable for sending out blood, oxygen, and nutrients throughout your body. When blood flow to a specific part of your body is decreased, you might experience the symptoms of poor circulation. Poor flow is most common in your extremities, such as your legs and arms.

Poor flow isn’t a condition in itself. Instead, it arises from other health concerns. For that reason, it’s essential to deal with the underlying causes, rather than simply the symptoms. A number of conditions can result in bad circulation. The most typical causes consist of weight problems, diabetes, heart conditions, and arterial problems.

Symptoms of Poor Circulation

The most typical symptoms of poor blood circulation consist of:

  • tingling
  • numbness
  • pulsating or stinging discomfort in your limbs
  • discomfort
  • muscle cramps

Each condition that may lead to bad blood circulation can also trigger unique symptoms. For instance, individuals with peripheral artery disease may have impotence in addition to normal discomfort, tingling, and tingling.

Causes of Poor Circulation

There are several different causes of poor flow.

Peripheral artery disease

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) can lead to poor blood circulation in your legs. PAD is a circulatory condition that triggers constricting of the capillary and arteries. In an associated condition called atherosclerosis, arteries stiffen due to plaque accumulation in the arteries and blood vessels.
Both conditions reduce blood circulation to your extremities and can lead to discomfort.

In time, decreased blood flow in your extremities can cause:

  • numbness
  • tingling
  • nerve damage
  • tissue damage

If left without treatment, lowered blood circulation and plaque in your carotid arteries may lead to a stroke. Your carotid arteries are the major blood vessels that deliver blood to your brain. If plaque accumulation takes location in the arteries in your heart, you’re at risk of having a cardiovascular disease.

PAD is most common in adults over age 50, but it can also occur in more youthful individuals. Individuals who smoke are at a higher threat for establishing PAD early in life.

Blood Clots

Embolism obstruct the circulation of blood, either partially or completely. They can develop almost throughout your body, however a blood embolisms that establishes in your arms or legs can cause circulation issues.

Blood clots can develop for a range of reasons, and they can be dangerous. If an embolism in your leg breaks away, it can pass through other parts of your body, including your heart or lungs. It might also result in a stroke. When this takes place, the results may be severe, and even fatal. If discovered prior to it triggers a bigger issue, a blood clot can frequently be treated successfully.

Varicose Veins

Varicose veins are enlarged veins triggered by valve failure. The veins appear knotted and engorged, and they’re frequently discovered on the back of the legs. The harmed veins can’t move blood as effectively as other veins, so bad blood circulation may end up being a problem. Although rare, varicose veins can likewise trigger blood clots.

Your genes largely identify whether or not you’ll establish varicose veins. If a relative has varicose veins, your danger is greater. Women are likewise most likely to develop them, as are people who are overweight or obese.


You may think diabetes just affects your blood glucose, but it can also cause poor circulation in certain areas of your body. This consists of cramping in your legs, in addition to pain in your calves, thighs, or butts. This cramping might be specifically bad when you’re physically active. People with advanced diabetes might have trouble detecting the indications of poor circulation. This is since diabetic neuropathy can cause lowered sensation in the extremities.

Diabetes can also cause heart and blood vessel problems. People with diabetes are at an increased danger for atherosclerosis, high blood pressure, and heart disease.


Bring around extra pounds puts a concern on your body. If you’re overweight, sitting or representing hours may cause blood circulation problems.

Being overweight or obese also puts you at an increased threat for many other reasons for bad circulation, consisting of varicose veins and capillary issues.

Raynaud’s Disease

Individuals who experience persistent cold hands and feet might have a condition called Raynaud’s disease. This disease causes the little arteries in your hands and toes to narrow. Narrowed arteries are less efficient in moving blood through your body, so you may start experiencing symptoms of poor circulation. The signs of Raynaud’s disease commonly happen when you’re in cold temperatures or feeling unusually stressed.

Other locations of your body can be impacted besides your fingers and toes. Some people will have symptoms in their lips, nose, nipples, and ears.

Ladies are more most likely to establish Raynaud’s disease. Likewise, individuals who live in colder climates are most likely to have it.

Detecting Poor Circulation

Considering that bad circulation is symptomatic of numerous conditions, detecting the condition will assist your medical professional identify the symptoms. It’s essential to very first divulge any known household history of poor flow and any related diseases. This can assist your medical professional better examine your danger factors, as well as figure out which diagnostic tests are most suitable.

Aside from a physical examination to spot discomfort and swelling, your physician might purchase:

  • an antibodies blood test to detect inflammatory conditions, such as Raynaud’s disease
  • a blood sugar level test for diabetes
  • blood testing to try to find high levels of D dimer in the case of a blood clot
  • an ultrasound or CT scan
  • high blood pressure tests including testing of the legs

Dealing With Poor Flow

Treatment for poor circulation depends upon the condition causing it. Methods might consist of:

  • compression socks for agonizing, inflamed legs
  • special exercise program recommended by your medical professional to increase circulation
  • insulin for diabetes
  • laser or endoscopic vein surgical treatment for varicose veins

Medications might include clot-dissolving drugs, along with blood-thinners depending on your condition. Alpha blockers and calcium channel blockers are utilized to deal with Raynaud’s illness.

You need to go over possible symptoms of bad blood circulation with your doctor. If you’re having unpleasant signs, they may signify an underlying condition. Untreated conditions can result in serious problems. Your physician will work to figure out the cause of your poor blood circulation and treat the underlying problem.

When captured early, diseases that cause poor flow are treatable. Left untreated, poor blood circulation might suggest an illness is in a progressive state. Dangerous problems, such as loose embolism, can also occur if the condition is not effectively treated. Work with your doctor to begin a detailed treatment strategy that likewise includes a healthy way of life.

Ali Gadimov
Diet Expert