While your feet are a small part of your body, they are required to support your entire body weight and allow you to move freely. Not only are your feet incredibly strong, they are also a very complicated structure of 33 joints comprised of 20 bones all attached by many tiny muscles and tendons. When one part of this complex system is damaged by injury, disease, or inflammation it can cause pain that ranges from annoying to horribly debilitating. There are many potential reasons for you to be experiencing pain in your feet, or even in just one foot. These common cause of foot pain include:
Bunions – An inflamed lump on the bottom of the big toe, usually caused by shoes that are too narrow.
Flat feet or falling arches – The arch of the foot is no longer present when standing.
Corns and warts – A thickening of the skin or sores on the soles of feet from rubbing or pressure.
Hammer toes – Toes that almost look like claws because they curl downward.
Arthritis – A rheumatic disease with many causes.
Break & fractures – Traumatic injury as well as stress from weight or normal movement.
Bursitis – An inflammation in a fluid filled sac that is between the tendons and the skin.
Gout – Increases in the uric acid in the blood causing joint inflammation.
Plantar Fasciitis – The thicker tissue on the bottom of a foot become inflamed.
Sprains & strains – Over stretched or pulled ligaments in one of the foot’s joint.
Tendinitis – Inflammation that occurs on one of the tendons.
What Can Be Done About Your Foot Pain?
Since there are many potential reasons that your feet are hurting, it is never a good idea to treat yourself without first consulting a podiatrist (a physician who specializes in feet). Depending on your diagnosis your physician may simply ask you to stay off your feet for a few days while applying R.I.C.E (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation) to the affected area. If the cause of the foot pain is not as easy to treat you may require more intricate care. This may include physical therapy, medication, or prescription orthotics. As a last resort in more severe cases your physician may recommend surgery.
When Should You See A Podiatrist?
As always, if you are concerned enough about your foot pain that you are considering treating yourself at home you should instead consult with a physician. Some other signs that you should schedule an appointment with podiatry specialist, like those at IBJI include:
Persistent swelling that doesn’t reduce in two or three days
Reddening, tenderness, burning, swelling or fever
Ankle stiffness or swelling that are worse in the morning
Numbness and tingling in your feet
A cut or sore that is producing pus
A wound to your feet that won’t heal
You can’t stand or put weight on your foot
Unbearable or severe pain
If you have any of the above symptoms, or your pain is chronic and persistent it is time to schedule an appointment with one of the podiatrists at IBJI. We are the right place to get complete and passionate care for your foot problems.
*The blog is for general information and educational purposes only regarding musculoskeletal conditions. The information provided does not constitute the practice of medicine or other healthcare professional services, including the giving of medical advice, and no doctor-patient relationship is formed. Readers with musculoskeletal conditions should seek the advice of their healthcare professionals without delay for any condition they have. The use of the information is at the reader’s own risk. The content is not intended to replace diagnosis, treatment or medical advice from your treating healthcare professional.