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Old June 15th, 2006, 08:46 AM   #1
lovey
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Default Circulation problems anyone?

This post might not belong here, but I wasn't sure where to put it. Do any of you experience circulation issues? Cold toes, fingers, swollen ankles, etc?
Maybe you could give me some advice. I'm 23 years old and my ankles are swollen basically all the time. My toes are freezing cold, and if I sit with my legs dangling off something, my ankles and feet turn a purple color!
I just keep thinking, wow, if I have this problem already, what's going to happen later?
Does anyone have exercise advice? For a few years now I have had very little physical activity, but now my ankles, feet and legs are so uncomfortable I just don't want to.
Thanks for any advice!
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Old June 15th, 2006, 08:56 AM   #2
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If it's always swollen, I think you should go see your doctor about it. There might be something behind the problem that requires treatment. I know of a lady with a similar problem who got surgery for it, too.

As for exercise, maybe swimming? Swimming is probably one of the gentlest forms of exercise there is, as it doesn't put much pressure on any body part. At the same time it's not so gentle you can't get a good workout. Kicking in the water for half an hour is certainly good exercise! To increase circulation, you might want to try dry brushing too. There is a thread somewhere on the forums, and even if it doesn't help it sure feels good!
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Old June 15th, 2006, 09:41 AM   #3
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I've found peppermint EO wakes my legs up if they've fallen asleep. I know peppermint also is excellent for circulation.
It might be worth a try.
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Old June 15th, 2006, 10:41 AM   #4
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Methinks I'll be happily waiting on advice in this thread =p

I don't have swelling issues, but my boyfriend always jokes that I must have something wrong- I'm always cold.

If it's cold outside my hands and feet are like ice, and even if it's not that bad my hands/feet are much colder than normal.
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Old June 15th, 2006, 07:58 PM   #5
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Thanks to each of you for your replies. Eiyela I went to the doctor to express concern over the swelling on Monday. He spent some time feeling my toes and seemed quite surprised at how cold they were. He also said it was odd that when he pressed his finger into them, the spot stayed white for longer than usual (the blood didn't immediately come back to the surface). He is setting me up with some kind of test to measure circulation.

Snowbear, do you just massage peppermint EO into the skin? That definitely sounds worth a try.

Dry-brushing and swimming are also excellent ideas. Dry-brushing is one of those things I always say I need to do and forget. I even have a brush for it. Thanks for the reminder!
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Old June 15th, 2006, 08:12 PM   #6
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Yep, just massage it in. The worst that will happen, is a nice tingle.
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Old June 15th, 2006, 08:42 PM   #7
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I think I remember reading that mustard paste/compress helps with circulation...
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Old June 15th, 2006, 08:52 PM   #8
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Are your toes ALWAYS cold? Do they ever rebound and are very red and hot? If so, it may be Raynauds syndrome. I have this, but my fingers and toes are not always cold. What happens with raynauds is that it is brought about usually by exposure to cold (but apparently stress can do it too) where my fingers/toes (and sometimes my nose ) become extremely white and have very little blood perfusion. It hurts very badly sometimes. After a little while, when i try to warm them up, the circulation rebounds and they become swollen or hot.
Before this started happening to me (it didnt really begin til I was 21), I was one of those people who always had cold feet and hands. Well, I still am, but I dont get any swelling, until after the white skin thing happens when I'm trying to rewarm them.
What you have sounds like something else, but I thought I would mention this if you wanted to research a bit more about it.
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Old June 15th, 2006, 08:57 PM   #9
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This is something that needs to be checked by your doctor - I'm glad you're on top of that.

You might try sleeping with your legs elevated - get a foam wedge, it will be more comfortable than a stack of pillows. That will help bring down the swelling during the night, and provide some relief. Also, during the day, take off your shoes and socks and sit or lie with your feet up whenever you can. Ideally, you want your feet above heart level. When you put your feet up, try to be sure your legs are supported, so that you don't put strain on your knees - a chaise recliner is better than a footstool.

Avoid heating pads on your feet/legs. With the reduced circulation, you may not be able to feel if it starts to burn you.

Also avoid any type of vigorous massage. If you have a clotting problem, that could loosen a clot, so that it could travel and cause a heart attack or stroke. These go at least until your doctor gives the okay for heat or massage.

Also, check your feet and legs for skin breakdown or injuries,every day. Don't forget to look between your toes. With reduced circulation, they may not heal quickly, and can get infected more easily. Avoid anything that could damage your skin, such as abrasive brushing. Your skin may be more delicate, from being stretched by the swelling. Look for cuts, scratches, blisters, and bruises. If your feet get sweaty, you may want to wear 100% cotton socks, and change them several times a day, since dampness can irritate skin.

Wear soft shoes, that can be loosened if necessary, and soft socks. You don't want a tight spot that could constrict circulation. Lace up sneakers or soft leather lace up shoes are a good idea. Nothing strappy or tight. Your doctor may recommend support stockings, but be careful about trying those on your own, since if they aren't fitted well or worn properly, they can just make things worse.

The medical name for this type of swelling is "edema." That's the name of the symptom, not the name of a particular condition. You can find an overview here: http://familydoctor.org/840.xml
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Old June 16th, 2006, 12:55 PM   #10
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My feet are always cold, but I don't have the edema. I just wear socks most of the time.

My DH has edema, but it is caused by his weight and his sedentary lifestyle. He's working on fixing that though, and is losing weight, so the edema isn't as bad.
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