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Causes for Numbness in the Big Toe

When your big toe feels numb, it is a cause of concern. This phenomenon usually signals a loss of blood delivery to the extremities, largely the result of a problem with the peripheral nerves. Numbness in the big toe can be an indicator that the circulatory system, which delivers oxygenated blood to the extremities, or the peripheral nervous system, has been compromised. The sensory nerves carry signals regarding touch, temperature, and pain to the spinal cord, which then carries the message to the brain. If this signal is blocked in some way, the toe fails to receive it and numbness occurs. Causes of numbness in the big toe include nerve compression, constricted blood circulation, vitamin B12 deficiency, and gout. Other causes are diabetes and bunions. In addition, advancing age, smoking, and obesity may be factors. Treatment for numbness in the big toe varies according to the cause. For guidance, it is suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist for a thorough exam and treatment options. 


Neuropathy can be a potentially serious condition, especially if it is left undiagnosed. If you have any concerns that you may be experiencing nerve loss in your feet, consult with our podiatrist from Dr. Powers Foot and Ankle. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment for neuropathy.

What Is Neuropathy?

Neuropathy is a condition that leads to damage to the nerves in the body. Peripheral neuropathy, or neuropathy that affects your peripheral nervous system, usually occurs in the feet. Neuropathy can be triggered by a number of different causes. Such causes include diabetes, infections, cancers, disorders, and toxic substances.

Symptoms of Neuropathy Include:

  • Numbness
  • Sensation loss
  • Prickling and tingling sensations
  • Throbbing, freezing, burning pains
  • Muscle weakness

Those with diabetes are at serious risk due to being unable to feel an ulcer on their feet. Diabetics usually also suffer from poor blood circulation. This can lead to the wound not healing, infections occurring, and the limb may have to be amputated.


To treat neuropathy in the foot, podiatrists will first diagnose the cause of the neuropathy. Figuring out the underlying cause of the neuropathy will allow the podiatrist to prescribe the best treatment, whether it be caused by diabetes, toxic substance exposure, infection, etc. If the nerve has not died, then it’s possible that sensation may be able to return to the foot.

Pain medication may be issued for pain. Electrical nerve stimulation can be used to stimulate nerves. If the neuropathy is caused from pressure on the nerves, then surgery may be necessary.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Bloomington, Bedford, and Washington, IN . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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