Do you suffer from foot pain? Here are the top 6 most common reasons why!
How long do you think you spend on your feet on a daily basis? Dependant on your vocation it may differ greatly from the next person, one thing we can all agree on is that we shouldn’t take them for granted.
This complex region is often overlooked as a cause of pain. All too often people isolate the area of pain and assume that the cause is close by, in some instances this couldn’t be further from the truth!
In this post, I’d like to have a look at the common foot conditions that I see in the clinic and what the best way is to approach them.
Flat Feet (Pronation)
Flat-footedness is probably the most common foot issues we see at the clinic, this is where the arch of the foot begins to flatten, or is already fairly flat from birth, and can cause a whole host of issues.
If you’ve noticed your shoes wearing away more prominently to the inside or outside edge then you, my friend are likely to be suffering from ‘over-pronation’. As a result, you may expect some potential strain and even long term injury to your Achilles tendon, your knees, hips, and even your back.
Essentially flat feet will affect your posture and gait when upright which will negatively resonate throughout your body. Years of ignoring this issue can put you in a very painful position so if you think this may be you then the time to act is now!
There are a number of in-soles you can purchase that are said to remedy flat feet but really this should be a bespoke approach. Looking towards biomechanics, the science of movement – specifically your movement – is a great way to ensure a bespoke solution to your problem can be sought.
We work very closely with the specialists at Roads To Freedom for this. David Perry provides an exceptional service and I have referred many of our patients to him for biomechanical analysis. You can check out David’s website here – https://www.roadstofreedom.net/ – I can’t recommend him highly enough.
This ailment presents itself via inflammation and a mixture of numbness and tingling sensations. Add to this the likelihood of sharp stabbing pain around the arches on the bottom of the foot and you’ve got yourself a particularly unpleasant complaint.
If you happen to work on your feet all day or even walk a lot throughout the day, or even wear steel capped boots, then this is incredibly common as standing for long periods, walking excess miles and steel capped boots can all be a major aggravating factor for Plantar Fasciitis.
Plantar Fasciitis is something that during the onset can be tended to pretty effectively at home by using a strict regime of icing with an ice pack (or bag of peas, entirely your preference here!), using tennis balls, golf balls to stretch through the plantar fasciitis and then strengthening, it sounds a lot, but it’s a regular complaint here at the clinic and easily managed with the right tools.
Following that we would recommend you assess the footwear you are using prior to the onset of pain. Poor fitting shoes should be ditched for something that offers more comfort. If the problems persist though, please come and see me for further help.
The Achilles tendon (or calcaneal tendon) is a thick fibrous band connecting the calf muscles to the heel bone. It can be quite easy to strain when running or playing sports without properly warming up or when quick changes of intensity occur.
There are a number of factors which may increase your chances of suffering from Achilles Tendonitis, worn out trainers, your age (it becomes more common as you grow older) and if you suffer from flat feet as you will place much more strain on the tendon. Also, rather strangely it is much more common in men.
Again, similar to treat as plantar fasciitis, treatment consists of icing, stretching and strengthening, another fairly common issues that are regularly presented to me in the clinic.
Metatarsalgia & Morton’s Neuroma (Interdigital Neuroma)
These painful conditions present themselves in the ball of the foot and can be attributed to a number of causes. Bruising to the toe bones is a common cause but it can also be brought on by irritation to the nerves between the toes and overpronation, another case of collapsed arches causing further issues!
The ball of the foot can become inflamed and swell considerably causing persistent pain if left untreated. Initially, you should come and see us so we can advise how best to treat it but in some instances, we recommend biomechanical analysis to ensure it is not a recurring concern, if all this fails, then surgery is common for this type of treatment and it’s also highly successful!
Or you may have heard to as The Rich Man’s Disease (or The King’s Disease, or even Big Toe Disease!) is caused by a build up of Uric acid in the blood which then crystallises in your joints. Inflammation and persistent joint pain occur and if left untreated can cause permanent damage to the affected joints.
Diet is thought to be a major contributing factor, which is where the Rich Man’s and King’s monikers come from, a ‘rich’ foods (meats, cheeses, etc) can play a part but certain medications, sudden illness, and chemotherapy are also common causes.
You should avoid alcohol at all costs and ensure you are drinking plenty of water in the first instance but a trip to the doctor and osteopath will almost certainly be needed to treat and alleviate the pain.
Finally, we have an incredibly common complaint that I’m sure everyone has fallen foul of at some point. Rolling or ‘going over’ on the ankle is all too easy to do whether playing sport (usually when I attempt to play tennis!) or simply just walking down the street and it only takes a second to do.
The results are usually incredibly painful and swelling will come on quickly so getting your foot elevated and tended to with an ice pack should be your first port of call. In some severe cases whereby the pain persists after the initial swelling has subsided unfortunately it may well be the case of a trip to the hospital for a doctor examine it to ensure the ankle isn’t broken.
The foot is a complex and often overworked area of the body and the above ailments are only really the tip of the iceberg, thankfully I am always at hand to advise, treat and help prevent these issues from stopping you in your tracks. Should you want to run anything by me please don’t hesitate to call me on 07787 404419.
Until next time!
All the best,