Help with neuropathy in feet

Hi everyone especially those who also have problems with neuropathy. Just wanted to pass on a tip which might help you as it has me.

A physio recommended rolling a tennis ball under each foot to stimulate circulation and to reduce painful spasms in bed. I tried it and it has been successful so maybe some of you might try it too.

Wishing you all the best on your individual journeys,


15 Replies

  • HI Barbara, I am interest in this to be honest. Going for physio at the moment as have a trapped nerve in my hip area, very painful at times and also my foot feels that it is a little numb so now not allowed walk until that resolves so off to get a tennis ball. I assume the neuropathy can recur from time to time. all the best

  • Hello Barbara, I am going to try this. I went back to Pilates for the first time yesterday since the chemo hair loss (and the wig didn't fall off, which was what was stopping me from going earlier) and discovered I cannot balance on one foot. I hadn't realised that but I do remember I couldn't balance properly on both feet when the neuropathy first was at it's worst. I'd feel I was going to fall over just because people were coming towards me in a supermarket for instance, although I didn't actually fall.

    Will buy some tennis balls tomorrow. I do have some but they "belong" to the dog!

    Thanks and all the best.

  • Following on from the Pilates theme, we use 'spiky balls' at Pilates for foot massage, and I was recently recommended to use them for my plantar fasciitis (posh name for heel pain - probably more a consequence of my foot shape but may have been made worse by chemo). I find massaging with the spikies helps with the residual numbness in my feet from the neuropathy. I finished chemo in March and am now on Avastin only, but when I wake up my feet feel numb and take a bit of time to get going. Here's a link - I have 10 cm ones - they're the standard size we use in Pilates class, also for rolling under the bum muscles when we're lying on our backs. Great fun!

  • I have a spikey massage ball too, it's really helpful when I'm on my own (getting my partner to squeeze my feet is the best way to relieve the discomfort). I have mild neuropathy in my feet and very occasionally hands... Was pretty cheap, just a few pounds and would say definitely worth a try.... Sx

  • Thanks for the info, I am going to try it, my feet are still very bad four months after finishing Taxol, acupuncture did not work.

  • Will certainly give it a go,thank you. If you have balance problems tai chi can be useful x

  • All of the suggestions sound brilliant and I will try. I am now on avastin only. I still have some numbness on the bottom of my feet left over from taxol/carboplatin. Was told it would take up to 1 year or might never come back. Am on Cymbalta for it which seems to be helping. It is mostly prescribed as an antidepressant which is also prescribed for neuropathy. Susan

  • Thank you, ball added to the shopping list x

  • Thanks for that tip! Do you sit whilst rolling, I.e. how much pressure do you use? After second line am struggling with this. Oh and how long should you do it for? :)

  • Normally I sit while rolling and just work it for a minute or so each foot. You can do it any time - I sometimes do it while watching tv - might as well be doing something useful with your feet :). At Pilates class we sometimes tread the spiky ball standing up - you can get a lot more pressure on it that way. Instructor says it's like treading grapes (I wish). After you've pushed really hard on it and then put your foot on the floor it feels really flat and relaxed! But sitting, I just put a medium kind of pressure - you can start gentle and work up - just whatever your foot tolerates.

  • Glad some of you are going to try this out. In answer to Steghart, I sit on the edge of the bed and roll the ball under each foot for about a minute and that seems to have worked for me.

    Look forward to hearing how other people get on with it!


  • Any tips are so appreciated, thanks so much 😔

  • Cheers for that Barbara. I shall give it a go.

    Debs xx

  • Like a couple of other ladies, I have a spiky ball. We had a lady at our gynae cancer support group 2 or 3 months ago, who runs exercise classes. She was suggesting some useful exercises for ladies who had had abdominal surgery, & pelvic floor exercises, then neuropathy was mentioned, & she brought out some spiky balls, which several of us bought.


  • Thanks for this tip!! I have had very little neuropathy in my feet. I mainly have it in my hands. I will for sure do the tennis ball for my feet. Well wishes to you! Xx


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