Why, oh why do your feet hurt so bad? You don’t have a particularly strenuous job, and you’re too busy to work out. Yet still, every day you struggle with foot pain and you have no idea what causes it!
Foot pain is one of the most common complaints in doctors’ offices. Sometimes these aches and pains are caused by broken bones or sprains, but more often the cause is a bit more benign. Wondering what’s wrong with your feet? Here are four common causes of foot pain.
Plantar fasciitis sounds like a very technical medical term. In fact, it’s quite simple. Plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of heel pain, and it happens when the tendon which stretches down your foot becomes inflamed.
The plantar fascia supports your foot’s arch, and connects your heel to your toes. When it becomes irritated, inflamed or swollen, you’ll suffer from some very severe foot pain.
Plantar fasciitis is best diagnosed by a doctor. There’s no medicine for the condition, but your doctor will likely prescribe compression socks, a brace to wear at night, or insoles for your shoes. These treatments will alleviate your plantar fasciitis pain in no time.
Rheumatoid arthritis is another, quite common, cause of foot pain. Unlike plantar fasciitis, rheumatoid arthritis can’t be cured. It can, however, be very successfully managed.
When your doctor diagnoses you with rheumatoid arthritis, he’ll most likely give you some natural remedies to try before prescribing you medication. Some natural treatments include compression socks, omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, dietary changes and NSAIDS like ibuprofen.
Next, he may prescribe a steroid to help with the inflammation. As a last resort, you may be prescribed antirheumatic drugs. If you can, try to consult with your doctor about trying compression socks or other non-intrusive methods of pain management first. Some prescription drugs have lasting ill effects on your body.
“Dem bones, dem bones, dem dancin’ bones.”
You know how the song goes. The leg bone’s connected to the hip bone and so on. Well, your tendons are affected by your bones and by each other just like your bones are.
Your Achilles tendon runs from your heel up your leg, and ends at your calf. This is a particularly “delicate” area of your body, and is prone to injury. When the Achilles tendon becomes inflamed, that’s called Achilles tendonitis.
Achilles tendonitis will cause foot pain. It’s actually one of the most painful types of foot pain. You’ll feel tenderness and stiffness, particularly in the morning and after physical exercise. The condition is caused by repeated strain of the tendon. Men are more prone to the condition than women, and as you age you’ll also become more susceptible. Of course, if you regularly participate in sports, that increases your chances of developing Achilles tendonitis.
To treat Achilles tendonitis, it’s most likely that your doctor will prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen or Aleve. Achilles tendonitis is actually quite easy to treat at home without medical intervention. However, please be sure that you’re properly diagnosed.
Compression socks and sleeves can be a wonderful treatment if you suffer from Achilles tendonitis. These will lessen the strain on your tendons and help you to heal.
Corns and calluses
Corns and calluses are your body’s way of protecting itself. Think about a guitar player. Her fingertips are likely hardened from picking the strings of her instrument. The body has generated extra layers of skin in order to prevent the skin from breaking.
The same happens over time with your feet. Corns and calluses can be caused by ill-fitting shoes, by wearing shoes without socks, or by repetitive motion against your feet. These conditions are very easy to diagnose, and treatment is easy, too.
If you do visit a doctor for your corns and calluses, you’re probably in for a “talking to.” Your doctor will tell you to ensure that your shoes fit properly. (Heck, we’ve said the same thing.) He’ll tell you to stop skipping the socks, and then he’ll tell you how to treat corns and calluses.
You can soak your feet in water to soften the corns. After you soak your feet, use a pumice stone to gently file your calluses. Please don’t use one of those metal rasps. You’ll do more harm than good.
Apply lotion to your feet regularly, and wear some socks! You can also use moleskin to pad the area. Then, use a pair of compression socks to stabilize your feet. Keeping a sturdy stance while you walk and stand will keep your feet from rotating in your shoes. That will help to prevent corns and calluses in the future.
Some foot pain is best left to the pros
If you’re experiencing any kind of foot pain, it can be tempting to diagnose yourself. Corns, calluses, Achilles tendonitis and plantar fasciitis are easy to treat at home. But foot pain is nothing to play around with.
Go to the doctor for a diagnosis. It could be that you’re suffering from arthritis – there are many variations on this condition, and it’s best to ask a doctor for his professional opinion. Sprains can usually be treated at home, but strains and breaks are best treated by the pros.
Foot pain can also be caused by severe injury, and if left untreated it can get much, much worse. If you’re experiencing any burning pain, tingling or numbness in your feet, talk to a doctor immediately. This could be a sign of a fracture. It could also signify diabetes or a similar condition.
There are obviously steps you can take to prevent foot pain. Shoes that fit well, the regular use of compression socks, and ensuring that you wear socks when you’re not wearing compression stockings will help. Take care of your feet, and you’ll be less likely to suffer from any of these conditions!
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