Morning Foot Numbness & Stiffness

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Doctor's Responses Archive

Viewer Question:

Each morning I wake up to numb feet. It's very hard to walk on them for the first several steps. After I have walked several steps they seem to loosen up. Why is this happening to me? At night when I put my feet up, then try to climb the steps go to bed, they are very stiff.

Doctor's Response:

There are many possible explanations as to what my be causing these symptoms. These include inflammation of the bottom of the feet from plantar fasciitis, swelling (edema) of the tissues of the foot, arthritis, repetitive foot injury from activities, and others.

People with these symptoms should stop and take a good look at their footwear. Is it wearing on one side or the other? Are there bulges in portions of the footwear over or around the toes? Are saddle straps pinching on tissues of the foot too hard?

If you have proper footwear and your symptoms persist, it might be worthwhile to seek a formal medical evaluation.

Thank you for your question.

Medical Author: William Shiel, MD, FACP, FACR

Last Editorial Review: 3/31/2003

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