You may find this hard to believe — but around one fourth of all the bones in your body are actually in just your feet! Our feet are made up of bones, joints, muscles and soft tissues that makes them flexible and allows us to be upright, and engage in movement activities like walking, running and jumping. This alone makes our feet at a higher risk of injury. Those who are constantly on their feet working or professional athletes are more at risk of injury. Given how intricate our feet are, and the delicate bones that make up our feet, we should take extra care when facing foot pain. Ignoring foot pain can only cause further injury or damage and increase recovery time.
Here are some surprising reasons for foot pain and treatment options for them so you can take the next step toward foot pain relief:
Causes for Foot Pain
1. Being constantly on your feet and on the go
If your line of work involves a lot of standing, or you are constantly rushing about day-to-day and being on your feet for hours at a time without any rest in between, your work or lifestyle can be the root cause of your foot pain. While it is great to move away from a sedentary lifestyle towards a more active one, it should not be causing pain and swelling in your feet. Take breaks and rest in between your work or busy schedule to keep foot pain at bay and prevent it from affecting your daily life.
2. Inadequate or improper warm up and cool down before exercise
Before and after a workout session, it is recommended to perform warm up and cool down stretches. We may remember to stretch our major muscle groups, but it is equally important to pay attention to our feet too. Perform stretching exercises that include the feet for 10-15 minutes before and after sporting activities can greatly reduce your risk of injury. Additionally, stretching out your feet can help you avoid foot, heel and ankle pain, as well as conditions such as plantar fasciitis, metatarsalgia, Achilles tendonitis, and ankle sprains and fractures. Foot and ankle fractures can cause intense pain and you should get immediate attention from a doctor.
3. Wearing improper footwear
The importance of proper-fitting, comfortable, and supportive footwear cannot be said enough. Lack of appropriate footwear can result in foot, ankle and knee injuries. Shoes that are uncomfortable or do not fit well can cause blisters and even damage our toenails. Whether for work, exercise or daily activities, investing in good quality shoes that have support, comfort and good tread. While heels are a favourite among many ladies, try to wear them as little as possible and go for ones that are not too high to avoid hurting your foot and ankle.
4. Weight gain and its side effects
This is a sensitive subject, however, there is adequate evidence to show that increased weight often leads to unpleasant side effects in our bodies including foot pain. When we gain weight, our feet, plus ankle and knee joints are one of the first to face the impact. While going about our daily activities, the additional weight takes a toll over time on our feet and joints, causing aches, pains and swelling. Additionally, our feet may expand so we should be mindful of our shoe sizes and styles of footwear. Rest, elevating our feet and massages can help with the symptoms, but there are no quick fixes. Losing even a small amount of body weight can see significant improvement in foot pain.
Top Treatment for Foot Pain
Given our reliance on our feet and how much our feet go through on a daily basis, proper foot care is imperative. Often when you encounter foot pain, avoiding aggravating activities as well as rest, ice, compression and elevation (RICE) treatment may offer some relief. When you have foot pain that doesn’t go away with rest and at-home anti-inflammatory treatments or you’re having severe pain, seeking help from a foot and ankle specialist can prevent unnecessary prolonged pain and suffering. Dr Gowreeson Thevendran is an experienced orthopaedic surgeon in Singapore with a specialist interest and surgical expertise in lower limb conditions. He is skilled in surgical techniques to treat foot and ankle conditions, as well as knee, hip and thigh conditions. Book an appointment with OrthofootMD today and give your feet the care and treatment they deserve!