One of the most common of foot problems is heel pain. Severe heel pain is usually felt under the heel or where the Achilles tendon joins the heel bone. Pain can sometimes radiate to the side of the heel. Knowing the heel pain causes is the first important step in treating the problem.
The feet takes a lot of beating and punishment, apart from carrying your entire body’s weight each day. As expected, it is prone to various types of injury that are painful and sometimes debilitating. Heel pain is the most common of these foot problems.
If you experience pain under your heel, you most likely have plantar fasciitis, the primary culprit behind heel pain. If the pain occurs behind the heel, then Achilles tendonitis could be the cause. Areas affected by pain can also include the inner or outer part of the heel and foot.
Not all heel pain is caused by stress or traumatic injury. There are types that can start as a mild throb but can develop into an excruciating and at times crippling pain. Oddly, some can go away without treatment, and some can stay on and keep on recurring.
Heel Pain Symptoms
Heel pain generally occurs under the foot, in the direction of the heel area. It ordinarily starts unnoticed and progresses steadily to intense pain. In many cases, no injury can be found that should cause pain.
Heel pain can develop gradually through constant use of flat shoes. The plantar fascia tends to get overextended by wearing flat shoes. Eventually, this connective tissue becomes sore and inflamed. A tear in the plantar fascia surface can bring acute pain. If a sudden pop occurs at the moment of injury, expect pain to follow promptly.
Severe heel pain can be experienced right after going out of bed in the morning or after some period of inactivity. It will subside a little but may get worse again later in the day.
Heel Pain Causes
Heel pain is rarely caused by a sudden instance of injury, like an accidental fall or twist. The likely causes are constant trauma and repeated strain on the heel.
Heel pain causes usually include:
Plantar fasciitis involves soreness and inflammation of the tough band of connective tissue called the plantar fascia. This ligament connects the heel bone (calcaneum) to the toes of the foot. Heel pain caused by plantar fasciitis occurs according to how your foot is structured. An example is if your foot has low or high arches, or if you are flat footed.
Overextension of the plantar fasciitis beyond its normal range can cause injury and inflammation. This mainly affects the point where it connects to the heel bone. At times, the middle area of the foot becomes affected. Pain develops under the foot, usually after a long period of rest or inactivity.
This chronic condition is also referred to as Achilles tendinosis or degenerative tendinopathy. It is linked to the gradual deterioration of the Achilles tendon.
The Achilles tendon may not function normally due to numerous minute injuries which cannot heal in the usual manner. As stress on the tendon continue to recur, more tears appear. These eventually weaken the tendon and cause soreness and pain.
This condition is caused by overexertion and repeated impact on the heel’s growth layers. Severs disease is the most common cause of heel pain in children 5 to 15 years of age.
Heel bursitis is the inflammation of the bursa, a fibrous sac at the back of the heel that is filled with fluid. Injury can occur after a hard landing on the heels or from wearing tight-fitting shoes. Pain can originate from either inside or behind the heel. This condition can also affect the Achilles tendon. Usually, the sufferer may feel the pain worsen during the day.
Tarsal tunnel syndrome
This neuropathy involves the compression or squeezing of a large nerve in the back of the foot. This cramped condition usually occurs in the foot or the ankle.
This is caused by activities that require exhausting workouts, physically-demanding work, or constant stress. It largely affects the metatarsal bones of the foot. Osteoporosis can also be a likely cause. Laborers and runners are the usual sufferers of this condition.
Heel bumps (pump bumps)
If the heel bone is not yet completely mature, and gets too much stress, the formation of extra bone layer is triggered in the body. This condition is common among teenagers. Flatfootedness is also a factor in this condition. Wearing high-heeled shoes before the bone is fully developed can also cause heel bumps.
Recurring heel pad inflammation
This chronic condition occurs when the foot’s heel pad gets too thin or becomes sore due to too much impact.
This crippling condition causes swelling and pain in the joints of the hands and feet. Any joint can also be affected. It can cause pain and inflammation in any joint, tissue or organ in the body.
Osteomyelitis is the inflammation of bone and bone marrow usually caused by bacterial infection due to an injury or surgery. The sufferer may experience muscle spasms and pain in the affected area, accompanied by fever.
This condition damages the nerves and can result in paralysis and pain in the hands and feet. It comes as a result of metabolic disorders, serious injuries, toxins, and infections. Diabetes sufferers are prone to this condition.
Other common heel pain causes include:
- Abnormal walking or running movement
- Circulatory problem
- Bone bruise
- Bone cyst
- Neuroma or an inflamed nerve in the ball of the foot
- Calcaneal cyst
- Tear in the Achilles tendon
- Tear in the plantar fascia
Heel pain in children are familiar occurrences. While most of them may not be severe, heel pain do need proper attention and immediate treatment. Many children approach their parents walking with a limp, complaining of heel pain and soreness in their ankle or back of their foot. They may be suffering from Sever’s disease or Achilles tendonitis.
Foot injuries and heel pain usually occur out of children’s overactiveness. Severe injuries can be felt right away but the common and less serious injuries can develop progressively with time. Since kids usually engage in sports activities that require vigorous training, one can almost always expect overuse injuries to come with it. These common injuries can go away with some rest and minor treatment. The downside is they can lead to more serious injury and pain if the symptoms are left untreated.
Heel pain in kids can be caused by different factors. Below are some common causes and how to relieve their symptoms.
Heel Pain in Children Caused by Achilles Tendonitis
The Achilles tendon connects the calf muscles to the heel bone. It helps largely in walking or running by pushing the foot forward. An inflamed Achilles tendon can get tender, swell up, and cause pain when walking. The symptoms may include pain in the heel or behind the foot. The child can feel a mild pain at the onset which gets worse after a while.
Children usually experience Achilles tendonitis after getting involved in a sudden surge of rough play or strenuous sport. It can occur a few weeks after kids get involved in a new sport. Children who are into soccer or other activities that require feet-intensive movements like running, jumping or sudden pivoting can develop Achilles tendonitis.
One effective treatment for heel pain in children is the RICE (rest, ice, compression, and elevation) method.
Rest – Give the child’s feet a chance to rest from sports and other feet-intensive activities.
Ice – Apply ice or a cold pack on the affected area to reduce the swelling.
Compression – Support the tendon and keep the inflammation down by wrapping the injured foot in elastic tape or bandage
Elevation – Lift the affected foot with the help of cushions to relieve some of the pain.
Analgesic and anti-inflammatory medications like acetaminophen or ibuprofen can help bring down pain and swelling. Moderate stretching of the calf muscles and ankle can prevent further injury and help speed up the healing process.
Let your child use footwear that’s appropriate for the activity they are into. Choose shoes with athletic arch and sole support to avoid putting unnecessary strain on the tendon. By avoiding aggravating foot injury, the pain and swelling will completely subside in no time. If treatment is delayed, Achilles tendonitis could become a persistent condition which can be triggered by simple activities like walking.
Sever’s Disease (Calcaneal Apophysitis)
Sever’s disease is referred to as the number one cause of heel pain in children with age ranging from 5 to 11. It’s called an overuse injury especially in physically-active kids. This means the injury is caused by recurring trauma during activities like jumping or running. Many believe that it is caused by the tugging of the Achilles tendon on the enlarging calcaneus or heel bone.
The causes of Sever’s disease include running or jumping. It is a common ailment among soccer and basketball players, as well as distance runners. This condition doesn’t spare even teen and pre-teen girls who love to jump rope. Symptoms may include pain behind the heel area, swelling that’s warm to the touch, and soreness when the back of the foot is pressed.
Treatment for Sever’s disease include pain relievers like ibuprofen and acetaminophen, application of ice pack, and calf muscle stretch. Elevation of the affected foot can help alleviate pain and swelling. With proper treatment, the condition normally heals after two weeks and your child can be back in sports in a few more weeks.
Heel Pain in Children Caused by Plantar Fasciitis
Plantar fasciitis is another type of foot injury due to overuse. Both young and old individuals can suffer from it. In this condition, the plantar fascia, the tough band of ligament which extends from the toes to the heel, gets injured.
Symptoms of plantar fasciitis include pain in the heel area, soreness along the foot arch, and labored walking. Excruciating pain can be experienced in the morning which gradually lightens up as the day progresses. The symptoms usually begin as mild but gets worse after a while. Pain triggers include repetitive trauma on the heel area like running or jumping, feet-intensive sports like basketball and soccer, wearing old or worn out shoes, shoes with no arch support, and standing for long hours.
The treatment for plantar fasciitis include the RICE (rest, ice, compression, and elevation) method. The child should rest from activities like jumping and running. Long walks and standing for long periods should also be avoided. Applying a cold pack on the affected area can help bring down swelling.
Taking analgesics and anti-inflammatory medicines can help bring down pain and swelling. Some doctors recommend orthosis and shoe inserts to reduce stress on the foot. Foot massage is proven to be effective as well.
Heel or Foot Fracture
Hyperactive children or those who are into strenuous sports activities have a greater chance of getting a fractured heel or foot. This is an uncommon occurrence and comes as a result of a strong impact or a fall.
Symptoms of a heel or foot fracture include bruising and inflammation accompanied by extreme pain. The child won’t be able to put weight on the injured foot, making it difficult to stand or walk. Prompt treatment of this injury can lead to more favorable results in the long run.
Conventional treatment of this condition usually include using a cast or splint to limit movement of the injured part, taking analgesics and anti-inflammatory drugs, rest, and cold applications. The child should be prevented from engaging in sports or other physical activities until the fracture has healed completely. Although rare, compound fractures may need surgical procedures.
Don’t always rely on DIY cures. There could be more to your child’s heel pain that may require a doctor’s examination. Although heel pain in children can be treated using conventional methods like RICE, pain that extends for long periods may indicate serious complications. This could indicate an infection or abnormal growths.To prevent the occurrence of heel pain, see to it that your child:
- Wears shoes with sole and arch support
- Limbers up and cools down before and after any sports activity
- Perform foot and calf conditioning stretches
- Treat plantar fasciitis with HeelAid.
The Achilles tendon plays a major role in physical activities such as walking, running, jumping, and standing on the balls of the feet. When it is subjected to intense and prolonged activity like running and jumping, Achilles tendon pain can occur. This condition is referred to as Achilles tendonitis,which is sometimes mistaken for plantar fasciitis.
Achilles tendonitis can occur in two ways. It can affect the lower part where the tendon connects to the heel bone (insertional Achilles tendonitis). It can also occur in the middle area of the tendon which commonly affects physically active younger individuals (noninsertional Achilles tendonitis).
What Causes Achilles Tendon Pain?
People who usually engage in long-distance walking or running, and intense exercise are nearly always prone to Achilles tendonitis. Other factors not necessarily linked to exercise, such as infection and rheumatoid arthritis, may also bring about this condition.
Recurring movement that puts repeated strain on the Achilles tendon can cause it to swell up and hurt. Other potential causes include:
- working out without doing warm-up
- constant and prolonged exercise that put strain on the calf muscle
- engaging in sports like soccer that require sudden stops and quick shifts of running movement
- abrupt boost in workout intensity without giving the body time to adapt to additional physical activity
- using ill-fitting shoes or worn-out shoes
- wearing high-heeled shoes for long periods
- formation of bone spur in the back of the heels
- aging which causes the tendon to lose strength
What are the Symptoms of Achilles Tendonitis?
To determine the nature of your condition, your doctor may perform the following:
- Ask you questions relating to the inflammation and pain in your calf or heel
- Examine the affected area by palpation to locate the exact location of pain and swelling.
- Observe the range of motion and flexibility as you to stand on the balls of your feet
If needed, the doctor may also order some imaging tests like X-rays, MRI scans, or ultrasound to positively confirm the presence of Achilles tendonitis.
The most noticeable symptom of Achilles tendonitis is inflammation and pain behind the heel when walking or running. You can also experience tense calf muscle that restricts your range of movement when you stretch your foot. You will also notice that the affected area is very warm and tender to the touch.
Here are the symptoms at a glance:
- Tense calf muscles
- Affected area is warm and tender to the touch
- Inflammation and pain behind the heels
- Restricted range of foot movement
Treatment of Achilles Tendonitis
Treatments that are available for Achilles tendonitis may range from home remedies to more invasive procedures. Home treatment may include rest and medication to bring down the swelling and pain. Invasive procedures may include steroid injections, plasma (PRP) injections, or even surgery based on the severity of the condition.
Simple home remedies
Simple home remedies have shown great improvements to reduce Achilles tendon pain. If home remedies fail to heal the tendonitis, stop the treatment. Consult your doctor before the condition gets worse.
Your doctor may recommend:
- Going to physical therapy
- Giving your feet some rest from sports activities
- Engaging in less foot-intensive sport
- Applying an ice pack after a workout or when pain occurs
- Gentle conditioning and progressive strengthening of your calf muscles
- Raising your affected foot to reduce inflammation
- Analgesic and anti-inflammatory medicine like aspirin and ibuprofen
- Using a foot brace to limit heel motion
- Wearing a shoe with special heel support to minimize and absorb stress from the tendon
Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation (RICE)
For the effective treatment of Achilles tendon pain, apply the RICE method immediately after feeling pain or swelling. RICE stands for Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation.
Allow your tendon to rest without applying any weight or pressure for at least a couple of days. Do this until the pain disappears and you can walk normally. Your doctor may recommend the use of crutches if you need to walk some distance while your tendon heals.
Ice and cold packs can help reduce the swelling faster. Put ice inside an ice bag and apply the cold pack gently against the affected area. Keep the cold pack in place for about 20 minutes. Take off the cold pack to allow the tendon to warm up.
Wrap the affected area with cloth or athletic bandage to compress the injury. This will keep the Achilles tendon from swelling further. However, be careful not to bind the injury too tightly as this can restrict blood circulation in the area.
While sitting or lying down, elevate your foot above heart level. In this position, blood can easily flow back to the heart and swelling is kept down. This position is easier to do when you are lying on your back with your foot on top of a pillow or chair.
In serious cases where basic treatment is not applicable, your doctor may recommend surgery to repair your injured tendon. If left untreated, your condition could get worse and your Achilles tendon could get torn and ruptured. You will experience extreme pain in your heel area, which will require invasive intervention anyway.
How to Prevent Achilles Tendonitis
To minimize your chances of Achilles tendon pain, here are some easy guidelines for you to follow.
- Condition your calf muscles with some stretching exercise every morning. This will strengthen your Achilles tendon against injury and make you more flexible. Stretch your Achilles tendon by leaning forward with a straight leg and your heel on the floor.
- Shift to a more feet-friendly sport activity, gradually intensifying your workout as you progress into the routine.
- Alternate low and high-impact sports like swimming and tennis, to give your tendons rest from repeated stress.
- Wear shoes with proper arch and heel support. Use footwear with slightly elevated heels to absorb tension from your tendon. Replace old or worn-out shoes.
- Don’t switch from high-heeled shoes to flat shoes abruptly. Instead, reduce your heel height little by little when shifting from high heels to flat shoes. This will allow your Achilles tendon to gradually stretch and widen its range of movement.
Achilles tendonitis normally heals in a few days, if given proper rest and home treatment. Complete healing can be longer than usual if the tendon continues to be subjected to stress. It will also help a lot if you allow your tendon some respite by changing your workout habits.
In the worst scenario, chronic tendonitis or a ruptured tendon may need surgical intervention. Seek immediate treatment for Achilles tendon pain or ruptured tendon. This, plus following your doctor’s recommendations, will get you on the road to faster recovery.
Individuals with flat feet or fallen arches have one or both feet flat on the floor. This may seem alright to some but there is, in fact, some problems involved. For one, they can suffer from arch pain and possibly plantar fasciitis. What’s more, the shoes of flat-footed persons can wear unevenly, more evidently on one side. They also can wear out faster and need to be replaced more often than usual.
The normal adult foot curves upward to form what is commonly known as an arch. The arch, located on the inner part of the foot, is somewhat raised off the floor surface. This forms a moderate gap under the arch which is noticeable when the person is standing. Flat-footed individuals have very low arches or none at all.
The foot arch is made up of taut bands of tendon that is connected to the heel and foot bones. Tendons in the foot as well as the lower leg function together to form the structure of the arches.
The tendons are stretched to their proper tightness, thus forming a normal foot arch. When these tendons are not stretched to their required tightness, little or no arch is formed. This results in fallen arch or flat foot.
Individuals with fallen arches have the tendency to roll over towards the inner side of their feet when they are standing, walking, or running. This is known as overpronation which can cause the feet to point outward and create an abnormal gait.
What Are the Causes of Fallen Arches?
There are different causes of flat feet in adults. Below are the most typical:
- A condition that has occurred since birth
- Pulled or injured tendons
- Soreness and damage of the posterior tibial tendon which connects the middle of the arch to the lower leg
- Bones that are broken or out of place
- Rheumatoid arthritis or other health issues
- Nerve complications
There are other factors that may raise the possibility of developing fallen arches. They include:
- Advancement in age
- Being overweight
What Are the Symptoms of Flat Feet or Fallen Arches?
Many people suffer from fallen arches and have learned to live with their condition without treatment. Other people, however, may come up with the following symptoms:
- Pain in the back and leg
- Feet-intensive movement becomes hard to manage, such as standing on tiptoe
- Feet gets strained too easily
- The feet’s inner bottom area becomes inflamed
- Aching and painful feet, particularly in the arch and heel areas
These symptoms indicate fallen arches. If you notice one or more of these signs, consider seeing your doctor.
How Fallen Arches are Diagnosed
The podiatrist observes your foot’s condition to find out whether you have fallen arches and what caused it. The examination could cover:
- Observation of your feet and legs as you go through basic movements like standing on your toes
- Examining the soles of your shoes for uncommon signs of wear
- Evaluating muscle and tendon strength in your feet and legs. This includes the posterior tibial tendon and the Achilles tendon.
- Looking at your medical record for illnesses or conditions that could have triggered fallen arches
- Further examination of your feet by MRI and X-ray.
A Test for Determining Flat Feet or Fallen Arches
If you want to be sure if you could have flat feet or fallen arches, perform this easy Wet Footprint test.
- Wet your feet
- Walk on a flat dry floor which will show your footprint
- Examine your prints while they are still wet. If there is a full and unbroken imprint of your feet on the floor surface, then it is possible you have fallen arches.
A large number of small children are flat-footed. They have what is known as flexible flat feet. The feet appears to be flat when the child is standing. However, a slight arch appears when they stand on tiptoe. In many instances, the foot arches develop as the child grows older.
Flat Feet and Fallen Arches Pain Treatment
Treatment for these foot conditions is based on the cause and seriousness of the problem. If there is minimal or no pain, and no complications are present, then treatment may not be necessary. If it were otherwise, your doctor may recommend the following treatment.
- Give your feet some time to rest
- Raise your feet when sitting or lying down
- Ice or cold packs can reduce swelling, redness or pain
- Physical therapy
- Use orthotic devices, shoe inserts, splints or braces
- Do foot-stretching exercises
- Take analgesic and anti-inflammatory medications
- Corticosteroids or other injectable medications to bring down swelling
If there is acute pain and other serious complications, the doctor might suggest some surgical procedures.
These may include:
Lateral Column Lengthening
This procedure involves grafting a bone to your foot to give the arch a more natural rise
This involves cutting the bone or altering its shape.
In this procedure, bones or other bony outgrowths like bone spurs are surgically removed
This operation involves cleaning the protective outer layer of tendons.
This procedure involves joining foot or ankle bones together
This procedure involves getting tendon from other parts of your body. This tendon will then be added to your foot tendons to help create a normal tendon pull and form an arch.
Flat Feet and Fallen Arches Remedies You Can Try at Home
Below are some remedies you can consider to do at home to reduce pain and even prevent fallen arches.
- Wear shoes and other footwear that match your activity.
- For women, do not use high heels. If you must, then use them only for a short period.
- For pain relief, apply an ice pack on the affected area. You can also take over-the-counter like acetaminophen, ibuprofen, or aspirin. Consult your doctor beforehand if you are taking any medication for other medical conditions.
- Consult a physical therapist for recommendation of conditioning stretches for feet-intensive activities.
- Treat any risky health conditions that may aggravate fallen arches, such as hypertension, obesity, and diabetes.
- Avoid high-impact sports that may put a lot of strain on your feet. These includes long-distance running, basketball, tennis, and other sports that require running on hard surfaces.
- Know when to seek medical care when the condition becomes severe or intervenes with your daily activities.
For Arch Pain Caused by Plantar Fasciitis
The foot arch is supported by the plantar fascia which connects the heel bone to the toes. Plantar fasciitis occurs when the plantar fascia tissue gets inflamed or damaged.
For arch pain brought about by plantar fasciitis, the best you can use for fast treatment is HeelAid. If you are after naturopathic treatments, then this doctor-endorsed brush-on application is for you. Made of all natural ingredients, HeelAid brings plantar fasciitis relief in days, not months.
Arch pain is moderate to extreme pain felt anywhere between the heel and the ball at the bottom of the foot. It is commonly caused by stress and inflammation of the plantar fascia, a thick connective tissue at the bottom of the foot. This painful condition is known as plantar fasciitis which is occasionally mistaken for bone spur.
In general, pain in the arch occur due to overexertion, injury, improper footwear, or being overweight. If the pain doesn’t go away after a few days, consider consulting a podiatrist to treat this condition before it gets worse.
Major Causes of Arch Pain
The causes of pain in arch of foot arise from different factors. The primary causes include:
Repeated stress or trauma
Recurring strain and shock to the muscles, ligaments, and bones that hold up the arch can result in injury and inflammation. Damage could come from repetitive activities like long and grueling workout sessions, walking or running long distance particularly on hard surfaces and wearing worn-out shoes.
The plantar fascia connects the heel bone to the toes and supports the foot arch. Plantar fasciitis pain occurs when this connective band gets swollen and weak due to damage.
Posterior Tibial Tendonitis
The tibialis posterior muscle supporting the foot arch could become injured due to stress and repetitive use. The tendon gets torn and damaged from the trauma, resulting in posterior tibial tendonitis or PTTD.
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) causes inflammation that weakens the foot ligaments so they can’t support the arch any longer. As the arthritis further develops, the bones in the foot change from normal to one with fallen arch. This shift into a flatfoot condition is usually followed by arch pain.
High Arch (Pes Cavus)
A high arch or pes cavus is the reverse of a fallen arch. Although more uncommon than flatfoot defects, the increased pressure on the ball of the foot can definitely cause acute pain in arch of foot.
Tarsal tunnel syndrome
There are instances when incorrect gait, injury, or a mass (cyst) in the foot may cause undue pressure on the tibial nerve. The sufferer may experience symptoms like pain, prickling, loss of sensitivity, and weakness in the sole or foot arch. These symptoms usually become worse at night.
Common Symptoms of Arch Pain
Pain in the foot arch produce varied symptoms depending on the root cause. The most typical pain symptoms include:
- Abrupt stabbing pain in arch of foot
- Pain increases after standing for a short time
- Intense shooting and burning pain
- Pain worsens when arch is stretched
- Pain when walking or running
- Swelling and tenderness in the arch and affected areas
- Pain that worsens when getting out of bed
Easy Home Remedies for Arch Pain
Over-the-counter medicines like acetaminophen, ibuprofen, aspirin, and naproxen are usually helpful for this condition to alleviate the pain and swelling. Use these medications with caution and do not exceed the recommended dosage.
At the first sign of pain or discomfort in the arch area, promptly treat the condition with RICE – Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation.
This is one of the best home treatments for reducing pain and inflammation. Use this treatment within the first three days after pain symptoms appear to speed up the healing process.
Give your feet some rest every opportunity you get. This will give your arches the chance to heal quickly and prevent further injury.
Ice will help lessen the pain in your arch. It will also reduce swelling and redness in the affected area. Ice wrapped in a towel or inside a plastic bag should be applied for up to 15 minutes. Repeat after four hours.
Use an elastic compression bandage to help prevent any inflammation in the affected foot area.
Raise your affected foot to limit the blood flow and reduce swelling. Lie down and rest your foot on a chair, bed frame or pillows. Make sure the foot is elevated above heart level
How to Treat Arch Pain Due to Plantar Fasciitis
Get to know the various plantar fasciitis symptoms and compare them with your condition
Know the experience of other sufferers and see if you can identify with the discomfort they are going through. Also remember to look into the possibility of heel spurs which are often mistaken for plantar fasciitis.
Take stock of your footwear
Get rid of tight-fitting shoes, those that angles your feet the wrong way, or those that don’t provide comfort for your feet. Avoid using high-heeled shoes if you’re a female. Old or worn-out shoes should be replaced. Improper footwear are often the cause of plantar fasciitis.
Make a few minor lifestyle alterations
This will include the most important change which is resting your feet by raising it twice a day for twenty minutes. For quicker recovery , apply an ice pack while they are at rest.
Consider losing some weight
Losing weight can free your arches from additional strain. Consult a nutritionist or medical professional to help you lose that extra pounds gradually and safely. You can also try working out in a gym but stay away from energetic and high-impact exercises that puts strain on your feet. This includes weight lifting and jumping jacks. Consider taking up tai chi, chi gong, yoga, or other low-impact activities while waiting for your feet to heal completely.
Add a set of easy foot stretches to your daily routine
Basic foot stretches in the morning will help limber up, condition, and strengthen your ligaments, heels, arches, and calf muscles. Do these stretches everyday before getting out of bed.
Get used to wearing shoe inserts and orthotic devices
Shoe inserts and orthotic devices lessen the pain and discomfort of plantar fasciitis.
Apart from rest, foot stretches, and ice pack, you can use HeelAid, a topical brush-on application for the relief and treatment of plantar fasciitis. This quick-acting formulation, developed by Dr. Briant Burke, a medical doctor and research scientist, will enable your condition to heal in just weeks, and not months. HeelAid assures the safe and effective treatment of plantar fasciitis-specific arch pain that it offers a 60-day money-back guarantee. Get more info about HeelAid here.
The foot arch is the main structure that absorbs strain and shock when we use our feet for standing, walking, running, and other activities. While the arch is designed to withstand a lot of pressure, too much strain will lead to injury and pain.
The arch of the foot extends from the heels to the base of your toes. It absorbs a lot of weight and stress whenever you are on your feet. The major functions of the arch include:
- keeping your balance
- carrying your weigh
- supporting movement
- absorbing shock
- adjusting to shifts in terrain
What Causes Foot Arch Pain?
Arch pain is not an uncommon foot condition. While it is often suffered by joggers and runners, it can also affect people who are not so active. For instance, people who spend a lot of time in front of their computers can also experience arch pain.
Arch pain can be felt in the heel and ball of the foot. Pain can also be felt on the top of the foot, as well as the ankles. In some conditions, sufferers may complain of pain in their knees, hips, legs, and even their back. Depending on certain factors, the pain may become aggravated when standing, walking, or any activity that requires the feet. The pain can also be excruciating when getting out of bed in the morning.
The causes of arch pain are varied. They include:
- Poor alignment of foot structure
- Strained ligament or muscle
- Walking or running long distances
- Fractures due to stress
- Inflammation due to arthritis
- Over or lack of tightness of joints
- Direct and constant trauma
- Long hours of feet activity
One of the most common causes of arch pain is an injured plantar fascia. The plantar fascia is the tough band of connective ligament on the bottom of the foot. It extends from the heel bone to the metatarsal bones of the toes and provides support for the arch. Plantar fascia injury can lead to plantar fasciitis, an inflammatory reaction that can trigger foot arch pain.
Symptoms of Arch Pain
The pain and swelling that come with plantar fasciitis may be present in either a general or specific area, usually at the bottom of the foot. The stretching of the arch may either heighten or diminish the pain. In most mild cases of fasciitis, the pain may lessen as the foot’s soft tissues begins to limber up. Even so, pain may become greater as the foot is used for a longer period. In extreme instances of plantar fasciitis, the pain may worsen when the arch is strained.
A more focused pain or tenderness indicates an injury or damage in that particular area. Pain when moving is likewise a sign of injury or damage in a specific foot area.
Ligaments link bones together and form joints. When ligaments get strained, they cause tenderness and looseness of a joint. These signs, accompanied by pain, usually point to a sprain.
Swelling and tenderness are signs of a fracture. You can notice a distinct lump or gap at the injured spot. It could be severe over the area of the affected bone.
Muscle injury is a sign when pain is experienced when the foot is stretched to its maximum length, curved, or bent in or out. Pain can also be felt when resistance is applied against the foot.
Bruises are caused by various factors. It can occur via direct force or injury to the foot. For example, you can accidentally step on a rock or a large person can step on your foot. Continued impact to the foot that lead to pain, discoloration, trauma, inflammation, and abnormal gait are indications of severe injury.
Treatment and Prevention of Arch Pain
There are different things you do to treat foot arch pain and prevent it from coming back.
Consider using shoe inserts or custom orthotics
Pay more attention to your feet particularly as you begin to advance in age. Aging can normally thin out and lose the foot’s layer of fat paddings. What’s more, your feet may increase in size, both in width and length. See your doctor if you develop arthritic-related changes and pain in your feet.
Pay attention to your footwear
Do not use ill-fitting and worn out shoes. Be sure that you wear shoes that are both comfortable and durable, especially if you like to walk and run long distances.
Avoid wearing high-heeled shoes as they put unneeded stress on your feet. If you must use high heels, wear those with two-inch heels or less. However, do not wear them for a long period of time.
Avoid using flip-flops if you won’t do a lot of walking. They provide very little or no arch support at all.
Shoes with arch support
Shoes have specific features built in for a particular sport. Wear the right shoes for the kind of activity you regularly engage in. For instance, do not wear walking shoes when you intend to go running.
If you are prone to arch pain, you need to consider using shoes with arch support feature. If you prefer, you can support your arches by using shoe inserts. They can purchase them over-the-counter or have them custom-made.
Arch support shoe inserts can benefit individuals with high arches or flat feet. How can you know if you have flat feet or high arches? Perform the wet footprint test. Wet the bottom of your feet and walk on a dry and flat surface. If the footprint area is completely filled in, you definitely have flat feet. If your footprint misses a large crescent shape, then you have high arches.
Here are some more guidelines you can follow to treat and prevent foot arch pain:
- Make it a habit to exercise and limber up your feet, especially before any sport activity.
- Elevate your feet and apply an ice pack on the affected area.
- Take analgesic and anti-inflammatory medications to reduce pain and swelling.
- Foot arch and plantar fasciitis pain can be relieved with a brush-on topical solution – HeelAid. It is made of all-natural ingredients and contains no synthetic chemicals.