According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, about 75% of Americans will experience foot pain at some point in their lives. This can include any pain or discomfort in the toes, heels, arches, soles, or other parts of the foot. This kind of pain usually is a result of a variety of problems that could be present in different parts of the foot, such as bones, ligaments, tendons, muscles, fascia, toenail beds, nerves, blood vessels, or skin.
There are different causes for different kinds of foot pain. One of the most common causes of foot pain is simply wearing shoes that don’t fit properly. Some other usual causes of foot pain include arthritis, diabetes, obesity, injuries, or other various medical conditions. Knowing the cause of your foot pain can help you figure out which treatments and preventions might be best for you.
Choosing Comfortable Shoes
It is important to remember that not all shoes are created equal. If you consistently wear shoes that don’t fit correctly or are designed for beauty rather than comfort, this can cause many problems due to weight distribution. Even though wedges are better than stiletto heels, shoes with any sort of heel shift your body mass forward, and can result in lower back pain and arthritis in the knees in addition to foot pain.
When shopping for the right kind of shoe for your feet, look for those that support your whole foot and do not squeeze your toes. These relieve foot pain while also preventing any future problems by improving your posture and relieving stress on your back, knees, and hips as well.
Exploring Home Remedies
There are many at ways to alleviate your foot pain without leaving the comfort of your home. These are methods that can relieve your discomfort, but might not necessarily prevent any future problems. Some examples include: applying ice to the affected area, taking over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, using foot pads to prevent rubbing, keeping the pain-causing foot elevated, and resting your feet as much as possible.
Maintaining Healthy Weight
Many of your foot problems could originate from being overweight, which puts too much pressure on certain parts of your feet. This can lead to problems with circulation, flattening or collapsing of the arches in the foot, and pain in other areas of the body, such as the knees and lower back.
Losing weight is the most obvious solution, but if weight loss is difficult or if you are pregnant, there are other treatments. For example, custom-made inserts for your shoes can protect and support your arches, relieve pain, and add comfort. Elevating your feet as much as possible, even when sitting, can increase circulation.
Practicing Good Hygiene
Keeping your feet clean and trimming your toenails regularly can prevent many problems that can cause foot pain. Athlete’s foot is a fungal infection that can cause redness, blisters, itching, and peeling. This is a condition that can be hard to treat, but it is easy to prevent by consistently maintaining good foot hygiene.
Other painful conditions include corns, calluses, warts, bunions, ingrown toenails, and spurs. These can almost always be avoided by taking good care of your feet—wash regularly, always wear clean socks, keep toenails trimmed, and moisturize.