Putting excessive pressure on the thigh or sitting in one position for a prolonged period of time can cause the feeling of "pins and needles" in your feet, which can be quite irritating. In most situations, this will resolve itself with a little movement and is nothing to worry about. If this happens very often though or seems to linger on for a long time, then a closer inspection into the situation may be needed.
How to Wake Up Your Foot
1. Change Your Leg Position
When some blood vessels or nerves being compressed, the normal supply to the foot will be compromised, causing "asleep" foot. A simple method of getting rid of this is to just change the position of your leg. This will remove the pressure due to any contorted position you may have been in and allow the normal blood flow once again.
The foot will feel prickly for a short while and may seem warmer as the blood rushes in. These sensations will subside in a short amount of time.
2. Stand Up
If you are wondering how to wake up your foot, then try to stand up along with reposition of your leg. Gravity will do the majority of the job and help the blood to rush in your foot. Although arteries are capable of pumping blood without the help of gravity, but standing up just makes the job easier and quicker.
Move your foot in a circular position after you stand up to help with the blood circulation and get rid of the "pins and needles" feeling even quicker. A slight stretch of your body will also help.
Insufficient blood circulation is very damaging over a long period of time. This is why care should be taken to avoid putting excessive pressure on a body part for prolonged period.
Getting up and walking is recommended to ‘wake up’ your foot but care should be taken to maintain your stability and balance. If you try to walk too quickly, then the foot will not be able to support the weight of the body and could even lead to the occurrence of an injury. Walk only after repositioning your leg and standing up for a few seconds.
4. Take a Warm Foot Bath
You may also wonder how to wake up your foot after some heavy physical exertion. The tightness in your muscles, the tiredness, and the soreness can combine to cause the pins and needle sensation in your foot.
In this condition, you can try to soak your feet in warm water, preferably with some Epsom salts thrown in, to help the muscles relax. If you find that your feet have swollen up after exertion, then try ice bath instead.
5. Get a Foot/Leg Massage
Get a deep tissue massage to help wake up your foot. The rubbing of the muscles will help improve the circulation as well as reduce tension. A good massage will also help you relax mentally, something that can be as helpful as any other physical therapy. Regular foot rubs can help improve the circulation in the leg and prevent your foot from having the ‘pins and needles’ sensation altogether.
Remember to always hydrate yourself after a massage to help in removing any toxins or lactic acids that have accumulated in your body. Some people experience severe headaches afterward if they fail to do this.
6. Consider Acupuncture
Acupuncture could be the answer to ‘how to wake up your foot’ in a long term manner. This therapy involves sticking in fine needles at various pressure points in the body, thus helping increase the blood circulation.
A lot of people that have suffered from chronic poor blood flow find acupuncture to be useful in treating their condition. The results of this therapy may vary from person to person; however, there is no harm in giving it a go. Make sure to choose an acupuncture therapist who is certified and preferably recommended by someone you trust.
When to See a Doctor
If your foot is asleep constantly or you are experiencing other associated symptoms like pain, discoloration, swelling or a rise in temperature, then it is time to make an appointment with your doctor.
A clinical examination, blood test and some imaging tests may need to be carried out to ascertain the underlying cause.
How to Keep Feet from Falling Asleep
Now you know how to wake up your foot, and it is also helpful to know how to keep your foot from falling asleep in the first place.
- Avoid putting excessive pressure on any one part of the body. Also, avoid sitting with your legs crossed or on your feet since this will compress some of the blood vessels and nerves leading to your feet.
- Keep changing your position if you are seated in one place for a long time. People on long flights often face this problem and are encouraged to keep shifting slightly in their positions to help prevent feet from falling asleep.
- Gently massage your feet if you sense that they are getting tingly or starting to fall asleep. Sometimes this is all that needed to prevent your feet from falling asleep.
- Take off your shoes if they are too tight or simply untie the laces or straps. Wearing shoes that fit you properly can go a long way in ensuring your feet do not fall asleep too often.