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ette_'s avatar

Weird tingling when top of foot is exfoliated (i.e. during a pedicure)?

Asked by ette_ (1360points) February 21st, 2011

Has anyone ever experienced this, or can anyone guide me towards an explanation?

This happens to me every time I get a pedicure and the top of my foot is rubbed, usually with sea salts or some other type of exfoliant. The area on my foot I think is about the upper middle of the foot towards the outer edge. I get this really strange twinge in a nerve around my collarbone opposite of the foot that is being exfoliated. So when my right foot is getting it, I feel the twinge on my left collarbone area. Left foot, right collarbone area. It’s a pretty unpleasant sensation, and sometimes it gets to the point where I have to put pressure on it so the sensation is bearable because I do like getting my feet rubbed, massaged, and exfoliated. When I do put pressure on it, it’s not as “painful” (although I wouldn’t classify the feeling as “pain”, but like I said, it’s not a pleasant feeling) and I think I can kind of feel some kind of “bubbling” going on with the nerve.

I’m a believer in reflexology and whatnot, but this particular phenomenon is irritating and I always wonder exactly what it is and if it means there’s anything wrong with me.

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10 Answers

Nullo's avatar

Sounds like cross-wiring to me.

nebule's avatar

I get a similar…tingle when I walk on sand…it seems some nerves are directly connected to various parts of your body… although mine is verging on a strangely pleasant feeling in those ‘special’ places ;-)

sliceswiththings's avatar

Yeah your body is totally crosswired, and nerves from body parts plug in to your brain at the same place or whatever. Similarly, I’ve heard that if your left shoulder hurts, you should massage your right eyebrow. My neck region always tinges during pedicures—for me it’s half the fun!

ette_'s avatar

Sorry, what does “cross-wiring” mean? I Googled it but it wasn’t very helpful.

Nullo's avatar

@hurtntired It’s not actually a recognized term, but rather an adaptation of the idiom, “get your wires crossed;” it is likely a reference to manually-operated switchboards in ancient Earth telephony. In essence, it means that you’ve got data going where it isn’t supposed to.
It’s nothing major, and, short of killing the nerve entirely, I doubt that there’s anything that you could do for it anyway.

ette_'s avatar

@Nullo, thanks—so although it’s not a “medically” recognized term, I gather that this happens to enough people (not my specific example, but cross-wiring in general) that it’s not necessarily a harmful or abnormal thing?

@sliceswiththings I’m glad, I guess, that I’m not the only one this kind of thing happens to! Sometimes I think I am just so odd when it comes to things happening to my body. I get these weird looks from friends or the BF when I say something about it!

Nullo's avatar

@hurtntired Correct. You’re not even the first one on Fluther. :D

ette_'s avatar

This is old, but does anyone know what kind of search terms I can use when Googling the above issue? I really want to understand more of the science behind it.

myketi's avatar

omg! I thought that I was the only one that this has happened to. Every single time that I go to get a pedicure and they put that peppermint scrub on my legs, I get a tingle or irritation in the opposite ear. It doesnt hurt but it is definitely irritating. My co workers actually laughed when I told them about this. They think I am totally weird. Now I feel so much better because I know that I am not the only one experiencing this problem. I would love to know what this is called or if there is even an actual medical term for this. I also have a problem that if I apply heat to my back I feel it in my right thigh. I have just learned to live with these oddities since having back surgery a few years ago. I just figured that they rewired my nerves wrong!

Jolson25's avatar

This EXACT thing happens to me anytime I get the salt scrub done during a pedicure. My collarbone tingles… very uncomfortable feeling!! Opposite side of the foot/leg being scrubbed. So strange I’m glad that I’m not the only one.

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