What causes aching legs?
Your legs have carried you from the time you could walk and been there for you every step of the way, so experiencing some worn-out feeling in your legs and feet is normal.
You may experience an uncomfortable achy pain or ache in the lower legs. Some people have more serious leg aches which are painful. Other symptoms that may accompany leg aches are:
which may feel like leg cramps
The pain or ache subsides when you rest.
in one or both legs
Sometimes, this might feel like a tingly feeling in the affected leg.
The legs feel weak and lacks strength.
or take longer to heal.
You may notice that you only have tiredness in your legs on occasion. Or your feet might only ache or feel sore when you’ve been standing most of the day. Those are probably nothing to worry about.
But, if your legs start to feel tired or achy and the pain affects your walking, or you begin to experience aching most of the time, it’s time to evaluate the problem.
If your symptoms occur frequently and they are impacting your daily life, see your doctor so they can determine the cause and develop a treatment plan.
There are several risk factors for PAD
Half the people with PAD do not display any symptoms of PAD2. In fact, a person with heart disease has a 1 in 3 chance of having PAD3, which is why it is important to be aware of the risk factors associated with this medical condition.
If you have PAD, it could be a sign that the arteries leading to your heart and brain are also narrowed and there is a six to seven times higher risk of a heart attack or stroke3.
Leg symptoms, especially where combined with certain underlying medical conditions, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, smoking or diabetes may be an indicator of poor circulation associated with peripheral arterial disease. Consult your doctor regarding peripheral arterial disease.
If you are frequently experiencing aching and pain in the legs, and they affect your everyday movement, make an appointment to see your doctor. There are many things that can cause your symptoms. Poor circulation is a common cause for leg aches and discomfort, but there may be other causes which you doctor can help identify.
Finding relief for your aching legs
If you have any of the conditions that commonly lead to a feeling of discomfort and aching in your legs, it is vital to follow your doctor’s advice in treating any medical condition that causes your symptoms.
It is also useful to ask your doctor about things you can do at home to help relieve your leg aches and activities which can help you move around more.
Eat foods with less salt or shake a little less salt on your food. This might reduce the symptoms that accompany swelling in your legs. This may reduce the aching and pain you feel in your legs and feet. Depending on which medication you’re taking, your doctor might offer different advice concerning your salt intake so make sure to talk to your doctor before making changes in your diet.
Smoking harms your blood vessels by accelerating plaque build-up and therefore increases your risk of poor circulation from Peripheral Arterial Disease. Poor circulation brings on symptoms of aching legs and feet, and a host of other leg problems. By choosing to quit smoking, you will be helping your health.
Unfortunately, carrying unwanted weight increases the pressure in the lower legs. This is a contributing factor in causing leg aches, discomfort and pain. If you lose weight, this may help reduce your leg symptoms because your body will contend with less pressure.
You want to avoid too much standing or sitting for an extended time. Sedentary living increases the risk of poor circulation. Your legs and feet feel the aches and pain because of reduced blood flow in the legs. Changing positions and keeping your body moving, on the other hand, will help improve circulation and offer relief for your symptoms.
Boost blood circulation in your body
There are a few activities you can do on your own. Starting a gentle walking program or even swimming therapy can help your body. This can have many good effects from improving your blood circulation, losing weight to improving your stamina5.
Walking helps your leg muscles contract and relax to pump the blood back up to your heart. It gets more fresh oxygenated blood flowing in your lower legs. If you have PAD and find that you have difficulty walking a long distance, using Revitive Circulation Booster may help reduce pain when walking. In fact, clinical results show that for people with PAD who use Revitive daily to improve their blood flow, they have been able to walk further before the onset of leg pain6.
Before starting on any new exercise activity, discuss them with your doctor.
Get back to doing the things you love
No doubt, you want to get the most out of life but constant aching, painful legs can interrupt your daily activities.
While it’s important to respect any medical limitations you might have, there are likely a few things you can do to help yourself find relief from your pain.
Your doctor knows best how to treat any medical conditions you have. Follow their advice. In the meantime, ask them if there are things you can do at home to improve your blood circulation and help you getting about, without any more drugs.
Disclaimer: This content is not intended as medical advice. We believe in helping people to make informed decisions about their health. We hope to empower you to ask your physician the right questions so you can both agree on a treatment plan that’s right for you.
- Jun Shu and Gaetano Santulli. Update on peripheral artery disease: Epidemiology and evidence-based facts, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6113064/
- Australian Journal of General Practice website, https://www1.racgp.org.au/ajgp/2020/may/peripheral-artery-disease-in-lower-limbs
- My Cleveland Clinic website, https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/17357-peripheral-artery-disease-pad
- Vascular Cures, https://vascularcures.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/lifesaving-tips-on-smoking-and-pad-flyer-Vascular-Cures.pdf
- WebMD website, https://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/features/hate-gym-work-out-in-water#1
- Babber A, Ravikumar R, Onida S, Lane TRA, Davies AH. Effect of footplate neuromuscular electrical stimulation on functional and quality-of-life parameters in patients with peripheral artery disease: pilot, and subsequent randomized clinical trial. Br J Surg. 2020;107(4):355-363. doi:10.1002/bjs.11398
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