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30th November 2022

Foot Numbness: 11 Potential Causes

Dr. Jill Barat, PharmD
Foot Numbness: 11 Potential Causes

Numbness in your feet on occasion can happen from sitting in an uncomfortable position for too long, but when it tends to happen all the time there may be a condition that is causing it.

Numbness in your feet can be a sign of pressure on your nerves or nerve damage and the symptoms often range from tingling, burning, and pins-and-needles, to just reduced sensations.

In this article, we will cover 11 of the most common conditions that can cause foot numbness to help get you an idea of what might be happening.

If you think that one of these conditions may be happening to you, you will need to talk with a doctor to get a full diagnosis and course of action.


1. Bad posture

This may be one of the easiest to fix causes of foot numbness.

If you tend to have a less-than-stellar posture and sit in very hunched-over or uncomfortable positions, you may be reducing blood flow to your lower extremities or putting pressure on your nerves.

Sit with a straight posture, with your feet comfortably on the ground, and take frequent walk breaks to ensure optimal circulation.


2. Diabetes

Diabetes may be one of the more common causes of foot numbness, and when this happens in your limbs it is likely referred to as diabetic neuropathy.

Diabetes can cause excess sugars in your bloodstream that can damage your nerves and vessels over time, leading to numbness and pain in some.

Making sure that your diabetes is well controlled is the best way to avoid foot numbness and neuropathy from the condition.


3. Lower back problems

If you have problems with your spine or nerves in your lower back, it can cause pinching or pressure that affects the nerves which are tied to your legs and feet.

When those nerves are pinched, you may have reduced sensations in your feet.

Maintain optimal posture to help avoid feet issues stemming from lower back problems.


4. Peripheral arterial disease

Peripheral arterial disease happens when the arteries running down your limbs become narrowed and reduce the amount of blood that can travel to the area.

This reduced circulation can lead to pain and numbness in the limbs over time.


5. Morton’s neuroma

Morton’s neuroma is a condition where there is a band of thickened tissue wrapped around certain nerves in your feet that lead to your toes.

The thickened tissue can put too much pressure on the nerve and cause a numb or painful sensation in the feet.

For some, there may be a sensation of having something in your shoe.


6. Metatarsalgia

Metatarsalgia can feel like the ball of your foot is inflamed, and for some, this can cause a feeling of numbness.

This condition occurs most often with excessive pressure on the foot, or with a large amount of athletics, especially in runners.


7. Alcohol overuse

The overuse of alcohol can deplete essential vitamins that are needed to maintain optimal nerve health, such as a range of B vitamins.

When these vitamins are too low, some may experience nerve issues such as loss of sensation.

Keep alcohol consumption within normal limits and take a daily multivitamin to keep vitamin levels optimal.


8. Raynaud’s syndrome

Raynaud’s is a condition in which the arteries leading to the fingers and toes spasm and reduce the appropriate blood flow to the area for an amount of time.

This reduced blood flow occurs most often in the fingers and toes, and may cause color changes in the affected areas.

With Raynaud’s syndrome the colors of the fingers or toes may change from white, to blue, to red.


9. Tarsal tunnel syndrome

Tarsal tunnel syndrome occurs when a nerve running down the leg and through the ankle bone is being pinched by the ankle bone, causing numbness or pain.

This condition normally worsens with walking or activities and may be a result of a previous ankle injury.


10. Guillain-barre syndrome

This rare condition is an autoimmune disease in which your body attacks the nerve cells, producing damaged nerves.

The most common initial symptoms of the condition include weakness and tingling sensation in your extremities.


11. Multiple sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune disorder in which the body attacks and eats away at the myelin sheath, a protective covering over your nerves.

Over time this may cause problems communicating information back and forth from the nerves of the body to the brain.

Zen Nutrients foot and nerve health supplements

At Zen Nutrients, our pharmacists have developed multivitamins with foot health and nerve support in mind.* These supplements contain a variety of vitamins, minerals, herbals, and plant compounds that may help support general nerve and foot health.*

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*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.