Burning Toes Sensation Causes, Treatments, and Symptoms

Burning toes is a common grumble and usually caused by damaged foot or legs nerves may be due to underlying disease or injury. Many take this condition lightly as compared to the pain, however, the same reasons for pain may cause it as well. Resultant symptoms may become and go or persist or occur alongside other severe symptoms. Accurate diagnosis is vital for proper treatment.

Burning in toes may occur for a number of causes and can affect anybody despise of age or gender. The causes of burning feet include physical and medical conditions that can lead to life-threatening symptoms. We repeat accurate diagnosis of the burning is very important to ensure effective medication is initiated in time. Here, we`ll focus on the most common causes, symptoms and best solutions to prevent, treat or relieve toes burning condition.

What causes of burning toes

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So, you have been pondering about the burning sensation in your toes, you are confused, you don’t know what exactly could cause this kind of burning.  Could it be an infection, genetic problems or other medical conditions? Well, burning toes causes are numerous, here are the common causes:


A possible cause of toes burning is diabetes. This is a chronic disorder that is characterized by large amounts of sugar level within the body system. It affects the body’s ability to utilize sugar in order to acquire energy. Medication assigned to be used by patients with diabetes may affect proper co-ordination and functioning of the nerves thereby causing damages due to pressure on the nerves. Doctor’s advice should be sought to ensure the problem is settled safely.

Joint diseases

There are several joint disease that can be affected your toes and hence result in burning sensation. This kind of diseases have their specific causes and symptom, therefore, whenever symptoms are absent the burning in toes may be due to the following joint diseases in the toes:

  • Osteoarthritis
  • Gout
  • Rheumatoid


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This is a collective term for nerve problems. When this condition strikes the nerve outside the brain and spinal cord, medical experts call it peripheral neuropathy. In many circumstances, when the nerve that carries vital information from feet to the brain is irritated, injured or diseased, burning sensation or numbness may be felt on the feet as well as toes. Many conditions can lead to neuropathy, common conditions are:

  • Pinched nerved-Root of the nerve is compressed as it departs the spinal cord
  • Diabetic neuropathy-occur after prolonged or untreated diabetes
  • Alcohol Abuse

Friction from ill-fitting shoes

This is the most obvious self-triggered cause of burning toes. Wearing ill-fitting shoes for your feet gives your feet hard time while walking. This exerts much pressure on your toes which may end up damaging and exposing some tissues. The nerves get damaged and thus result in burning toe sensation. It is advisable to put on shoes that will not make you uncomfortable while walking or doing your exercises to prevent such revolting scenarios.


Another possible cause of burning toe sensation is a burn. This is whereby a hot object lands on your toes leaving behind wounds that expose the internal tissues. The nerves, however, due to extreme abrupt changes in temperature, may get damaged hence malfunction. If the wounds are not well managed, an infection may crop in and bring about crueler conditions than just the normal pains from the injury. Painkillers or antibiotics can relieve the pain and help to heal.

Exposure to harmful compounds

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Toxic substances contribute a lot toward unhealthy growth. When chemical products enter the body, either through ingestion or through penetration via the skin, they may cause irritation thus damage the internal tissues, in our case, the toes. This thereby causes discomfort within the entire feet since relay of information between the toes spine and brain is affected. This will definitely result to burning sensation on the toes. Doctor’s prescription can assist alleviate the irritations resulting from the allergic chemicals.

Toe injury

Hot toes may be as a result of accidents. When the toe tissues are damaged and exposed to the external environment, the open sores may be an easy way for bacteria to invade. The bacteria thus cause infections that bring about itching on the sores. If not well treated, pus may begin to form hence a burning sensation is sure to be experienced in such cases. Antibiotics can help relieve pain.

Blood circulation disorder

This is another factor that can result in burning toes syndrome. There are two types of blood circulation disorder that can lead to toes burning sensation: arterial problem (blood flow is restricted) and a venous problem (oxygen deficient blood returns to the heart through the veins).

A usual arterial disorder is peripheral arterial disease, venous problems on the other side include deep vein thrombosis and varicose veins. Another condition called vasculitis is another condition that causes inflammation to both veins and arteries. All the mentioned conditions here are capable of causes burning sensation in many parts of the body including toes.

Multiple sclerosis

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This is a chronic disease that affects the nerve connection within the body organs. “A disease that affects the brain and the spinal cord causing weakness, coordination, balance difficulties and other problems.” In addition, the rate at which the peripheral nerves are supposed to work is altered thus a burning sensation may be felt on the toes or other parts of the body.

Extreme cold

People residing at places where the environment span cold and wet climate are most vulnerable to this disorder although, it may occur on any other person provided the toes are exposed to an extremely cold condition. Cold causes numbing of the toes this affects the smooth running of the body metabolic activities. Peripheral nerves can also be damaged leading to burning sensation and numbness.

Other Causes

Apart from the above causes, more causes include:

  • Nutritional Deficiencies
  • Diseases such as HIV and Stroke
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)
  • Sarcoidosis
  • Guillain-Barre syndrome
  • Electrical injuries

Symptoms including hot feet

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There are various symptoms that accompany burning pain in toes. These symptoms are determined by the cause of the disorder.  They can vanish of their own or persist. Let’s take a look at the following symptoms.

  • Pain
  • Numbness
  • Difficulties in walking
  • Reddening of the toes
  • Swelling and blisters
  • Extreme sensitivities during touch
  • Muscle fatigue
  • Sensation fluctuations

Burning toes can also occur alongside other severe symptoms and of course life-threatening symptoms i.e. stroke. So don’t take this condition for granted! I also thought it wise not to forget mentioning this, hot toes can also result in certain complications and these include:

  • Permanent nerve damage
  • Brain damage
  • Loss of leg
  • Aggravation of already existing symptoms


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During diagnosis process for burning pain in the sensation, your doctor or dermatologist may need to ask you certain questions. Besides examining the underlying virtual symptoms, he may ask the following questions:

  • How long has the problem been felt
  • Are suffering from diabetes
  • Is the sensation felt in one or both toes
  • Are you on certain medication
  • What are the types of your footwear
  • What are other experienced symptoms among other questions

All these questions are aimed at determining the exact underlying cause for your burning toe. There are medical treatment and home remedies that can help prevent, treat or relieve the burning legs and feet.

Home remedies

What are home remedies? These are home products and procedures that can help treat disorders without having to incur much cost of visiting a medical professional. The good news about them is that they are easily available in our homes.

Apple Cider Vinegar

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This is an effective hot burning feet remedy that many people like due to its effective performances when dealing with skin conditions treatment. It has healing qualities that help in relieving pain and quickens restoration of the damaged tissues easily. It also relieves inflammation and thus effective treatment for burning legs and feet.

  • Put hot water in a basin
  • Add two tablespoons of vinegar
  • Add table salt and stir to form a solution
  • Keep your legs in the solution for about 20 minutes
  • Do this three times daily

Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera has widely used home natural products for many skin conditions. Thanks to its antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammation and skin soothing properties. When all these potentials are combined, Aloe Vera emerges to be among the best treatment for hot burning feet conditions.

  • Cut fresh aloe vera leaf and extract the gel
  • Wash your feet and pat them dry
  • Using your fingers, apply the gel on the toes where you experience the burning feeling
  • Leave to stay for about 20 minutes and see the changes

Clove oil

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Have you tried clove oil on your burning in toes? If not, then this is the best opportunity to give it a try. Clove oil is a highly effective treatment for alleviating pain and burning foot pain. It has antiseptic properties that discourage bacterial and fungal infection. It also helps in boosting proper circulation within the entire foot.

  • Deep your fingers in clove oil
  • Apply it on your toes and massage thoroughly and gently until the entire area is covered
  • Repeat this thrice or four times every day

Alternatively, for a sore toe:

  • Dilute three drops of clove oil with one teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil
  • Massage the oil on your toes to allow muscle relaxation

Hot and cold-water method

This is another simple method of relieving a stubborn burning in the toe. Hot water works by regulating the circulation of fluids and blood within the all foot system. Cold water assists in reducing swelling in the affected area. This should be not done to extremes to avoid more damages on the toe.

  • Heat a bucketful of water
  • Place another bucketful of cold water and sit on a chair with both buckets in front of you
  • Deep your whole feet in the bucket containing warm water for about three minutes
  • Remove them and place them in the bucket containing cold water for 10 seconds to one minute
  • Wash your feet with cold water
  • Repeat the entire steps twice a day

Lavender oil

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Another satisfying remedy for burning pain in the toe is lavender oil. It brings about a cooling effect and quickens healing of the burning foot pain. By massaging it against your toes, inflammation is reduced hence proper circulation is recovered. Lavender oil reduces pain within the nerves hence relieving discomfort. Try it today following the procedure below.

  • Put three drops of lavender oil in a bowl
  • Add one drop of chamomile oil and one drop of geranium oil
  • To this, add two teaspoons of olive oil and mix them thoroughly to form a paste
  • Apply them with the help a cotton ball on the affected area
  • Do this twice a day

Turmeric therapy

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Turmeric powder is an ancient home remedy extracted from Ayurveda for treating many disorders that affect human skin. It contains antiseptic and antibacterial properties that help keep off bacteria causing infection. It also has more property that assures you hot toes a relief.

  • Add a teaspoon of turmeric powder in a glass of warm milk
  • Stir it to form a solution then consume it
  • Do this twice daily for excellent results

There are other remedies that can be applied to treat burning in toes like increasing vitamin nutrients in your diet etc. but get this, not under all circumstances will the home remedies be effective or satisfying. In severe cases, please see your doctor as soon as possible.

Visiting a doctor is important

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As we have laid earlier, home remedies and even over-the-counter treatments may not work for your case. Therefore you must visit your doctor sooner to avoid severe symptoms of complication. The doctor will do prescription depending on the underlying causes.

For instance, antibiotic may be applied for infection and antihistamines for allergies. Immunosuppressants may also be meaningful etc. Anyway, we will leave this to your doctor, he/she has a wide range of prescription to recommend for you depending on the causes and the severity of symptoms.