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Nov 09

APMA Staff

How to Deal with Cold Feet

by APMA Staff

How to Deal with Cold Feet

Your feet don’t have to be cold just because the weather is.

For many of us, the colder months are starting to arrive. As the trees begin to lose their leaves, freezing temperatures and snow flurries aren’t far behind. Naturally, such cold temperatures cause all of us to feel a chill. Our feet usually get the worst of it due to our tendency to go barefoot at home. Luckily this can all be fixed with wool socks and snug blankets.

But what if socks and sheets fail to work their warming magic? Mulishly cold feet could be a symptom of poor circulation. Sluggish circulation means oxygen and blood have trouble reaching your feet.  The affliction can be caused by smoking, obesity, and aging. Here’s what you can do about it.

1. Get the blood flowing

This one is a bit obvious, but if you’re dealing with poor circulation it might be time to kick start your blood flow. That means plenty of regular activity and exercise. If you spend most of the day sitting, find a reason to get up and walk a bit every once in a while. Grab a glass of water or chat with a coworker in person instead of sending an email. As an added benefit, thirty minutes a day of exercise, five times a week, is recommended by the American Heart Association for a healthy heart.

If you can’t find the time to walk, take a moment to stretch. While sitting in your chair, try rotating your ankles in small circles, first clockwise for 30 seconds, then counterclockwise for another 30. For a little more movement while seated, try a few sets of leg extensions by lifting your foot up until your leg is fully extended and your knee is straightened. Pause for a moment then lower your foot back down. Either of these stretches will at least stimulate blood flow but they shouldn’t be considered the only exercise you get all day.

2. Hydrotherapy

Hydrotherapy is just a fancy word for using hot and cold water to deal with your blood circulation problem.  First, submerge your feet in hot water to enlarge blood cells and attract them towards the skin, improving circulation. Next, bathe them in the cold water to shrink and move farther from the skin, helping you achieve a more comfortable foot temperature. Keep alternating between both water temperatures for 20 minutes or so.

If you choose to go to a trainer or gym for your foot bath, watch out for bacteria. Many general use foot bathes aren’t cleaned properly and can harbor fungus-causing bacteria from other users’ feet or toenails.

3. Get a Foot Massage

Massages aren’t just for a luxurious trip to the spa. In addition to stimulating blood flow, regular foot massages can actually increase oxygen capacity in your blood.  

Ultimately, make sure to choose a reputable foot masseuse. You don’t want to end up with someone that doesn’t provide a sterile environment for your feet. That could lead to foot fungus or a host of other problems. Ask a podiatrist if they know any reputable foot masseuses in the area. They might even have someone on staff that can provide the service for you!

Have any other questions about stubbornly cold feet? Visit our clinic in Edmonds, WA

Still having trouble warming your feet up? The trained specialists at Ankle & Foot of Edmonds can answer all of your questions. Call 425-775-6996 or complete our online form to set up an appointment.



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