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- What is Poor Circulation?
- Symptoms of Poor Circulation
- What Causes Poor Circulation?
- Treatment for Poor Circulation
- Help for Poor Circulation
What is Poor Circulation?
Poor circulation is the result of blood flow being restricted to certain parts of the body. It is often first noticeable in the hands, feet and legs. Poor circulation occurs when blood vessels become partially blocked or constricted due to plaque build-up or pressure; this occurs during the later part of many pregnancies.
Poor circulation is most common in adults, but in some instances can affect children and babies. Most occurrences in the young are due to medical conditions and not lifestyle issues.
Symptoms of Poor Circulation
Symptoms of poor circulation include tingling or numbness in feet, legs, hands, muscle cramps and soreness, vertigo, fatigue, varicose veins, changes in skin color or skin temperature. Poor circulation to the brain can cause frequent headaches and memory loss. Swelling of the hands and feet may indicate poor circulation due to kidney problems.
What Causes Poor Circulation?
Poor circulation has a variety of causes from mild to life threatening. Many cases are directly due to lifestyle choices and improper diet.
Common causes of poor circulation include a sedentary lifestyle, niacin deficiency, excessive alcohol and caffeine consumption, overexposure to cold temperatures, pregnancy and varicose veins.
Serious conditions that cause poor circulation are arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), emphysema, high cholesterol, heart disease, lung disease, thrombophlebitis (blood clot in a vein), kidney failure and diabetes.
Treatment for Poor Circulation
Treatments for circulatory disorders will vary based on the diagnosis of the root cause of the problem. Treatment typically involves medication in addition to lifestyle and dietary changes that promote good health. Weight loss, regular exercise, and a nutritious diet that is high in fiber and low in saturated fats are usually recommended. Stress management practices that reduce stress and lower blood pressure may also be suggested for problems related to high blood pressure.
Daily treatment with low-dose aspirin may also be used to thin the blood and prevent clotting. Prescription medications may also be recommended based on the underlying cause of the circulation problems.
Help for Poor Circulation
Certain foods improve blood flow. Eating garlic, rosemary and ginger with meals can help improve circulation and heart health. Ginger expands the blood vessels and garlic cleanses the blood while improving circulation. Rosemary is used as a natural remedy for reducing blood pressure and general support. All three can be eaten or taken in supplement form for a more concentrated dose.
Stress management also plays a key role in reducing anxiety and lowering blood pressure, which leads to improved circulation. Practices like self-hypnosis, meditation, and yoga relieve stress and improve health and well-being.
Incorporating regular activity improves circulation. Those who sit at work for hours a day should take regular breaks every hour to get up, stretch and move to prevent poor circulation.