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The Dangers of Poor Blood Circulation

Various conditions can cause poor circulation, including peripheral artery disease, blood clots, coronary artery disease, and diabetes. Poor circulation most commonly affects your extremities, such as your arms and legs.

Lack of good circulation isn’t a condition on its own; rather, it’s a symptom of an underlying condition. Treating circulatory issues involves appropriately managing the underlying issue to prevent further damage to your arteries while at the same time taking measures to improve blood flow and prevent complications.

The importance of good circulation

Your circulatory system transports oxygenated blood and nutrients throughout your body to your organs and tissues. When your circulation is poor, parts of your body fail to receive adequate blood flow. Because every part of your body relies on adequate blood flow to function properly, poor circulation can lead to complications, some of them serious and even life-threatening.

Symptoms of poor circulation

Any condition that damages or compromises your blood vessels can lead to poor circulation. Some conditions — high blood pressure, for example — silently cause damage long before you experience symptoms. Most people with poor blood flow notice changes in sensation in the affected body parts. 

If your legs are affected, you may feel tingling and numbness or throbbing pain. Some people describe a pins-and-needles sensation, while others experience muscle cramps, especially when engaging in physical activity or at the end of a long day. If you suspect that you or a loved one has poor circulation, watch for these symptoms:

Causes of poor circulation

Most often a condition develops that interferes with the way your blood vessels work, preventing them from fully doing their job. Plaque build-up in arteries, for example, can cause those blood vessels to become narrow and stiff, reducing blood flow. This can lead to peripheral artery disease, a condition that usually affects blood vessels in the legs. People with PAD have poor circulation in their legs, causing symptoms like numbness, aching, and cramping.

Dangers of poor circulation

You shouldn’t ignore signs of poor circulation. Even if you don’t notice precise symptoms, a lack of adequate blood flow to any part of your body can have serious consequences.

When parts of your body fail to get enough blood flow, small bumps and bruises can turn into large ulcers. The lack of blood flow prevents sores from healing quickly. That means any ulcers are at risk of becoming infected, and the situation can go downhill quickly. In serious cases, unmanaged poor circulation can cause tissue death and infections that lead to amputation.

Get your blood pumping

Talk to Dr. Majed Chane if you think you’re at risk for circulatory problems. Managing conditions like high blood pressure and coronary artery disease plays a role in avoiding complications brought about by circulation issues. Meeting your target blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar goals can help prevent further damage to your arteries. Quitting smoking and limiting alcohol intake further protect your circulatory health.

Exercise gets your blood pumping and helps improve blood flow. In addition, Dr. Chane incorporates technologies such as BEMER®️, a device that stimulates blood flow in small blood vessels to relieve your symptoms, and external counterpulsation therapy (ECP), as part of a holistic, drug-free approach.

Partnering with a circulation specialist can get you on the right path to improved blood flow. Take the first step toward improved health, and learn more about diagnosis and treatment of circulatory conditions at CA Heart and Vein Specialists by contacting our Huntington Beach, California, office. You can also book an appointment online.

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