Signs & Symptoms of Poor Circulation in Feet

Poor circulation is a common problem that is experienced in extremities such as your feet 2. Because your feet are so far away from your heart, they are a common place to experience poor circulation 2. If you have poor circulation, not enough oxygen- and nutrient-rich blood is getting pumped through all of the tiny blood vessels in your feet 23. There are a many signs and symptoms to watch for if you believe you have poor circulation in your feet 2.

Is This an Emergency?

If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.


One symptom of poor circulation in your feet is numbness, according to Mayo Clinic 2. Very poor circulation affects your nerves, which are responsible for feeling stimuli 2. Therefore, numbness is a lack of sensation---either partial or total. If you experience numbness, you might feel tingling that is commonly referred to as "pins and needles" in your feet or toes, or you might feel nothing at all.


If you don't experience total numbness, your feet probably often feel cold, according to Native Remedies. Your blood is responsible for helping regulate your body's temperature, and if enough blood is not flowing through your feet, they will easily become cold. If you think you might have poor circulation, pay attention to whether your whole body is cold or if it is just your feet that are chilly—a sign of bad circulation 2.


The color of your feet is another sign to indicate if they are getting enough blood. Native Remedies states that your skin will start to look more pale, red or blue—known as cyanosis. This color change occurs because not enough oxygen is reaching your feet.


A dangerous symptom of poor circulation in your feet is the development of sores that are unable to heal, according to EPodiatry 2. Normally, when you get a cut on your skin, your blood vessels deliver oxygen, special cells and the nutrients needed to heal it. However, when your feet are not getting an adequate supply of blood, cuts on your feet will stay open and not heal. Not only will pre-existing cuts not heal, but healthy skin might begin to break down because it is not being properly nourished.

Slow Growth

In addition to cuts either not healing at all or healing more slowly, other normal functions on your feet will occur slowly as well. Another sign of poor circulation is that your toenails will not grow at their normal rate, and you might notice you have to trim them less frequently 2. If you have hair on your feet, it will also grow more slowly or not grow at all, according to Mayo Clinic.