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Posts Tagged ‘Foot numbness’

Foot Numbness- 5 Likely Reasons your Feet feel like Pin Cushions

Monday, September 24th, 2012



What causes foot numbness? You know, that horrible “pins and needles” sensation you keep getting in your feet (and sometimes hands), that takes forever to go away. Don’t ignore painful tingling in the extremities, because it could be a sign of a severe injury or underlying illness. If you frequently experience foot numbness throughout the day, then alert your doctor immediately. Here are some possible causes of foot numbness.

Foot Numbness- 5 Likely Reasons your Feet feel like Pin Cushions- B12 Patch

Vitamin B12 deficiency

Vitamin B12 is an essential nutrient for your nerves- it helps to maintain myelin, a fatty substance that coats the nerve cells of your brain and spinal cord, insulating them from inflammation and exposure to viruses. Myelin also supports communication between the nerve cells, providing a slick surface for quick and effective delivery.

When you don’t have enough vitamin B12 to maintain myelin, the result is a breakdown of the myelin sheath, called demyelination, which impairs your nervous system functioning. Vitamin B12 deficiency, or pernicious anemia, is a common cause of foot numbness, painful tingling, and other forms of nerve damage that occur when the myelin sheath become diminished.

To treat foot numbness caused by vitamin B12 deficiency, it is essential to replenish your vitamin B12 levels immediately. Many supplements like vitamin B12 shots, sublingual vitamin B12, or other over-the-counter (OTC) nonedible forms of vitamin B12 are effective for getting your vitamin B12 levels back to normal.

Pernicious Anemia- Vitamin B12 Deficiency is Nerve Rattling- Peripheral Neuropathy

Multiple Sclerosis (MS)

Multiple sclerosis (MS), like pernicious anemia, is also a demyelinating disease, but it is much rarer and more detrimental. Peripheral nerve damage from MS goes beyond foot numbness, and causes difficulty walking, manipulating your arms and legs, or controlling your bladder.

Because of its similarity to symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency, patients of MS are advised to have their vitamin B12 levels checked routinely, in addition to receiving treatments for muscles spasms, fatigue, or foot numbness caused by multiple sclerosis.

Painful Tingling in Hands and Feet- What’s Up with That?

Diabetic neuropathy

If you suffer from diabetes, then you may experience frequent foot numbness, tingling in the hands and feet, or sore tongue. This is a sign of diabetic neuropathy (nerve damage caused by diabetes).

It’s worth noting that if you take metformin, a popular diabetes medication, then you are at high risk for vitamin B12 deficiency, another common cause of nerve damage, as mentioned earlier.

See your doctor if foot numbness occurs frequently, and also ask for vitamin B12 blood screening, as well.

Managing Diabetes and Vitamin B12 Deficiency


If you had chickenpox as a child, then you may develop shingles in your old age. In addition to foot numbness, other symptoms of shingles include painful burning skin rash, blistering, fever, and joint pain.

Herniated disk

A herniated disk occurs when a disk in your spine slips and causes nerve pressure. Symptoms of herniated disk in the lower back include sharp pain in the hips and legs, in addition to foot numbness or weakened leg muscles.

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Like this? Read more:

Can Vitamin B12 Repair Nerve Cells?

Undetected Vitamin B12 Deficiency- Why is B12 off the Radar?


Peripheral neuropathy

Numbness and tingling- Medline Plus

Images courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Painful Tingling in Hands and Feet- What’s Up with That?

Monday, December 5th, 2011



Is painful tingling in your hands and feet rubbing you the wrong way? Do you suffer sharp, prickly tingling in your face, or fingers and toes? Chronic peripheral neuropathy causes numbness in your fingers, hands, feet, and toes- that feeling you get when your legs “fall asleep.”  Several diseases and conditions may cause neuropathic pain symptoms; the only way to treat the never-ending tingling in your hands and feet is to find out what’s causing it…


What causes annoying tingling in the hands and feet?

Pernicious anemia

One of the earliest symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency anemia is neuropathic pain- sufferers of vitamin B12 deficiency feel sharp, achy tingling in the hands and feet, numbness, “pins and needles,” or a painfully swollen tongue.  

Even if you eat sufficient food sources of vitamin B12 from meat, fish, and dairy sources, you might have dangerously low B12 levels.

Causes include autoimmune disorders, gastrointestinal diseases or surgeries, drug interactions, or the inability to produce intrinsic factor in the stomach.  To find out if you have vitamin B12 deficiency, ask your physician for a vitamin B12 blood test- you might require vitamin B12 supplements.


What are the Symptoms of Pernicious Anemia- B12 deficiency?

Underactive thyroid

Hypothyroidism causes symptoms similar to vitamin B12 deficiency, like “brain fog,” fatigue, depression, muscular pain, and numbness or tingling in your hands and feet.

Sitting and standing

Sitting or standing for long periods without moving or taking a break- washing the dishes, standing by a register, or sitting at a computer for hours- can cause prickly tingling in your feet and legs.


Vitamin B12 Deficiency. Are you at Risk?

Striking a nerve

If you have suffered a head or neck injury, then you may experience numbness in your arms. Similarly, a lower-back injury could cause painful numbness in your legs.


If you’ve ever had the Chicken Pox, then you’re a candidate for shingles.  The herpes zoster virus appears around middle age, and causes neuropathic pain such as painful skin rash, itchiness, red blisters, and painful tingling and numbness.


Both frostbite and atherosclerosis (arterial plaque build-up) restrict blood supply to your extremities, causing severely painful numbness in toes, hands, feet, or fingers.

Nerve pressure

If you have suffered a herniated disk, then painful nerve pressure on your spine may cause tingling and numbness in legs.  Dilated blood vessels, scar tissue, infections, or tumors may also cause severe peripheral neuropathy.

Carpal tunnel syndrome

Carpal tunnel syndrome caused by constant repetitive motions, such as typing or knitting, causes aching in your hands, fingers, and wrists.


Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a disease that affects the brain and spinal cord, causing feebleness, reduced motor control, trouble maintaining physical balance, and foot numbness.


One of the many symptoms of diabetes, a blood sugar disorder, included painful tingling sensations and numbness in the hands and feet.


People who experience frequent seizures, such as epileptic seizures, may experience dizziness, prickly “pins and needles” sensations in their hands, feet, arms, legs, or numbness in the face.


Stroke victims suffer loss of consciousness, speech slurs, disorientation, partial paralysis, numbness, and tingling on one side of the body.


Migraines with aura produce stroke-like symptoms such as sudden “gibberish” talk, visual distortions, facial numbness, feebleness, and mental confusion.

Transient ischemic attack (TIA),

A transient ischemic attack, or “mini-stroke,” may signal an oncoming stroke; symptoms include dizziness, mental confusion, balance problems, and numbness or tingling on one side of the body.


One of the symptoms of lupus autoimmune disorder is Raynaud’s phenomenon, which causes poor blood flow to your fingers and toes by constricting blood vessels.


Toxic poisoning

Exposure to toxic amounts of alcohol, lead, radiation therapy, seafood toxins, or tobacco may cause neuropathic damage, including painful numbness in arms or legs.

Animal or insect bite

If you’re bitten by an animal or insect (spider, tick), then you might experience symptoms such as prickly tingling and numbness in your fingers, toes, arms, or legs.

Read more about the symptoms of B12 deficiency:

Why do my Arms and Legs often Fall Asleep? B12 and Paresthesia

Tired of being Tired all the Time…It’s Tiring!


Tingling: Causes- Better Medicine

Numbness and tingling- Medline Plus Medical Encyclopedia

NINDS paresthesia information page- National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke

What Is Atherosclerosis? NHLBI, NIH

Image credits, from top:

Dzz, clarita, lyns, chelle, grietgriet

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