How to Help Poor Circulation in Feet and Ankles

Written by melissa morang
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How to Help Poor Circulation in Feet and Ankles
Walking is a simple way to increase the circulation in your feet and ankles. (dog walking image by Jana Lumley from

Many people experience poor circulation in their feet and ankles, causing these areas to become swollen. Certain factors can contribute to this condition such as high blood pressure, heart disease or even diabetes. There are some things you can do to increase the circulation to your feet and ankles. These methods are fairly simple and may reduce the swelling that comes with the poor circulation.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Elevate feet. When lying down, place cushions or pillows under the feet to elevate them above the heart and increase circulation.

  2. 2

    Keep active. Walking is a good way to increase circulation to your feet and ankles, so try to take a walk every day. If standing all day at work, you can try walking in place or even try things such as wiggling your toes. These activities help with circulation.

  3. 3

    Wear loose socks. Tight stocks can cut off circulation and cause swelling.

  4. 4

    Sit with legs uncrossed. Crossing legs can restrict circulation, so always be aware of how you sit. Remind yourself to sit without crossing the legs.

  5. 5

    Wear support stockings. These stockings are designed in such a way that they help the blood flow from the lower leg to the heart.

  6. 6

    Massage your legs. Gently massage in an upward motion. This helps improve your circulation by directing the blood from the veins back to the heart.

Tips and warnings

  • Always check with your doctor if you have any concerns with swelling or circulation.

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