How to Keep Feet from Falling Asleep

Two Methods:Keeping Your Feet AwakeDealing with the Problem

Almost everyone has experienced the uncomfortable feeling that occurs when your foot "falls asleep." This is a common description of what is medically known as Paresthesia. This is a normal, although uncomfortable, experience. Others may refer to it as feeling "pins and needles." Whatever you call it, this tingling sensation is something most people want to avoid. There are many ways you can keep your feet from falling asleep.

Method 1
Keeping Your Feet Awake

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    Move around. Feeling like your foot is "asleep" is a common sensation. It's also a feeling that most people would like to avoid. Typically, parasthesia occurs when there is a lack of movement in that body part. To keep your feet from falling asleep, make sure to move them regularly.[1]
    • When your nerves are compressed, they can't send normal messages to your brain. That's why you lose feeling in your feet during parasthesia.
    • Try rotating your ankles in gentle circles to increase blood flow to your feet. You can also gently flex your feet forwards and backwards.
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    Find a new way to sit. Sitting "cross-legged" is comfortable for many people. You might find yourself sitting with one or both feet tucked under your body, especially if you are sitting on the floor. While sitting that way may be comfortable for you, it is also one of the most common reasons that feet fall asleep. To avoid nerve compression, try not to tuck your feet underneath you when you sit. Instead, make sure your feet are free to move around, and do not let your body weight press down on them.[2]
    • It's a good idea to stand up at least once an hour. Walking around is good for your overall health, too. Try setting a reminder on your phone so that you make sure to get out of your seat even when you're at work.
    • It is quite common to compress your nerves that run through the buttocks and back of the leg to the feet. Avoid sitting on a thick wallet on one side.
    • Try to sit with your legs at a 90 degree angle. Avoid sitting in a position where the back of your thighs dig into the chair. Sit at a 90 degree angle, or use a stepper to place your feet.
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    Wiggle your toes. One of the easiest and most effective ways to keep your feet from falling asleep is to move your toes around periodically. You can do this while you're sitting or lying down. For example, if you are watching tv, get in the habit of wiggling your toes during commercials.[3]
    • You can also wiggle your toes while you are standing. Have you ever had your feet fall asleep while you're waiting in a long line? Next time you find yourself in that situation, try moving your toes around inside of your shoes.
    • Often, feet fall asleep while you are riding a stationary bike or using an elliptical machine. Wiggle your toes periodically while you exercise and you can prevent the problem.
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    Change your shoes. It is possible for your feet to fall asleep even while you are walking. Often, this happens because of an underlying problem with the nerves in your feet. You can help alleviate this issue by wearing properly fitting shoes.[4]
    • Make sure that your shoes are not too tight. You should be able to move your toes around in them without pain.
    • Avoid wearing high-heels, as these types of shoes put added pressure on your feet.
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    Focus on your breathing. Anxiety is actually a cause of feeling pins and needles. If you suffer from a general anxiety disorder, helping to manage it can help you to prevent your feet from falling asleep. Try to keep your breathing slow and steady. This promotes an overall calming effect on your mind and body.[5]
    • During panic attacks, many people hyperventilate. This can cause pins and needles. Focus on drawing deep, slow breaths when dealing with anxiety.
    • Breathe in slowly for five to seven seconds, and hold each breath for two seconds before slowly exhaling.
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    Calm down. Controlling your anxiety is important for your mental health and also in preventing your feet from falling asleep. There are several things you can do to help manage anxiety. For example, you can try adding meditation to your daily routine.[6]
    • Each day, make time in your schedule to sit quietly and calm your mind. You can download guided meditations to listen to on your smartphone.
    • Do yoga. Yoga has wonderful benefits for both your mind and body, including easing anxiety. It is also excellent for circulation.
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    Change your sleeping position. If you are a sound sleeper, it is possible that you don't move much while you are sleeping. This is due to nerve compression. If you fall asleep with your legs crossed, or one foot tucked under the other, you may wake up to paresthesia.[7]
    • Try sleeping on your back with your legs parallel to one another. This will help keep pressure off of your feet.
    • If you share a bed with your partner, try sleeping a little further apart. Your feet could fall asleep if someone else puts his or her leg on top of yours.

Method 2
Dealing with the Problem

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    Consider the causes. Paresthesia is common, and often the result of sitting in the wrong position for too long. But pins and needles can also be an underlying cause of a more severe medical condition. For example, diabetes is one of the leading causes of parasthesia.[8]
    • Other issues that cause the problem are related to nerve damage, which can be caused by substance abuse or injury.
    • Vitamin deficiency can also lead to a numbness of the feet, such as Vitamin B deficiency. It’s best to check with a nutritionist, dietitian or your physician to assess any vitamin deficiency.
    • Seizures and migraines have also been linked to parasthesia.
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    Seek medical attention. If you regularly experience parasthesia and you are unsure of the cause, schedule an appointment with your doctor. He can run tests to figure out what is causing the issue. For example, abnormal levels of sodium and potassium in your body might be the cause. A blood test can help find answers.[9]
    • Keep a record of when your feet fall asleep and for how long. Share this information with your doctor.
    • Once your doctor has determined the cause of your parasthesia, he can make a treatment plan for you.
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    Adopt healthy habits. Maintaining a healthy weight can help prevent parasthesia. It can also help prevent some underlying causes, such as certain cases of diabetes. To maintain a healthy weight, eat a balanced diet.[10]
    • Make sure to eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, lean meats, and healthy fats. Avoid added sugars and trans fats.
    • Exercise frequently. Aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity five days of the week.

Article Info

Categories: Feet Knees and Legs