Arch Rivals: Common Causes of Foot Pain

December 6, 2017
By: GraMedica Team

You could make many jokes about foot pain while you sit with your feet propped up on a pillow to quiet the throbbing after being on them all day. For some people, this kind of foot pain is sporadic at best. For others, it’s a way of life. Some seek treatment, others seek information before scheduling their next appointment at the doctor’s office. If you’re the latter, let’s get acquainted with your body’s sometimes cruel but necessary travel means: the feet.
The foot and ankle together have 26 bones, and 33 joints. Throw in an additional 100 muscles, ligaments, and tendons (because things aren’t complicated enough) and you have glorious built-in mobility. With numbers that large, and the amount of time we spend exercising them, it’s no wonder we experience pain. The foot as a whole can experience a multitude of issues.

A Person With Whole-Foot Pain Can Suffer From Tendinopathy, Sprains, Fractures, Infection, Disease Or Arthritis.

Tendinopathy refers to the tendons connecting muscles to bones. Think of it as a rubber band tying two things together. Sometimes a tendon can become inflamed, otherwise known as Tendonitis, causing general pain in the foot. Tendinosis is when the tendon suffers micro-tears. Both forms of Tendinopathy are caused by over-exerting your feet.

While Tendinopathy pertains to your tendons, sprains pertain to your ligaments (also a stretchy fiber that connects your bones to one another). If a ligament is stretched too much it can suffer damage, or a complete tear. Most notably this happens after strenuous activity or an incident such as a fall.

A fracture is notoriously known as breaking a bone, however the bone does not need to completely break to be considered a fracture. A stress fracture is a cracked bone. Typical fractures are the result of an incident, while stress fractures are the result of repeated over-use.

The foot is vulnerable to several different types of infection. Parasites, bacterial, fungal, and viral infections can enter through tears in the skin and cause redness, swelling, warmth, drainage, and general pain.

Disease can also be problematic. Gout, a build-up of uric acid crystals in the joints, typically affects the big toe. People who have diabetes are subject to foot ulcers and neuropathy. They may experience tingling, numbness, or pain.

Arthritis can develop in the joints of the foot causing pain and immobility. Osteoporosis causes bones to weaken, making a person more vulnerable to fractures.
To further break down the intricacies of the foot and its ailments, there are three categories: the heel, forefoot, and toe.

There Are Two Primary Culprits Of Heel Pain:

Plantar fasciitis refers to the plantar fascia. The plantar fascia is the tissue on the bottom of your foot connecting your heel to your toes. Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of this tissue. It’s caused by excessive pressure or stress on the foot to include running or wearing improper inserts. The sharp pain associated with plantar fasciitis is strong in the morning, and after standing for long periods of time.

Achilles tendonitis is heel pain originating in the back of the heel where the Achilles tendon is located. The Achilles tendon is responsible for connecting the back of your leg to your heel. A sudden increase in strenuous activity such as sports can cause this type of injury.

Common Causes Of Forefoot Pain Are:

Metatarsalgia is pain and inflammation in the ball of your foot. Despite its terrifying name, it can be managed with at-home treatments to include elevation, and ice on the affected area.

Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome is similar to Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, except in your feet. Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome is the inflammation of the ligaments, or surrounding muscles, protecting your posterior tibial nerve. You will experience pain wherever the inflammation is pressing on the nerve.
Posterior Tibial Tendon Dysfunction (PTTD) pertains to your arches. PTTD is a fancy name for the flattening of the foot. PTTD is caused by tendons failing to support the arch. Initial pain is located in the arch. As the arch flattens, it will gradually move to the outside of the foot. It is a progressive condition. Treatment is available and should be sought early to prevent the need for surgical measures.

Toe Pain Is Quite Possibly The Easiest To Identify:

Corns are essentially calluses. They are typically hardened, a different color than your skin, and are a result of ill-fitting shoes.

Bunions are a shifting of bones inside the foot. This can cause a bone to protrude on the side of your foot, and/or a change in alignment of your toes (they may even begin to overlap).
Ingrown toenails are the inward curling of your toenail, causing it to grow into your skin. It can cause pain, swelling, and sometimes even infection.

Hammertoe is typically the result of wearing shoes too small for your feet causing one or more of the toes to curl down and inward. If left untreated, the tendons in the affected toes will become tighter, causing the toe to stiffen in the curled form.

Morton’s neuroma is the inflammation of the nerve causing cramping, burning, or electric shock pain typically between the third and fourth toe.

As you can see, most foot pain is caused by ill-fitting shoes, high-impact activity, or disease. It’s okay to research the cause of your pain, but no website can substitute the tailored attention, medical training, and years of experience a doctor can offer you. If you’re experiencing foot pain, whether or not you found an answer here, make an appointment with a podiatrist. Not only can they diagnose whatever issue you are suffering from, they can remedy the pain through proper treatment.

If you’re ready to make that jump and schedule an appointment to see a doctor, visit our doctor locator today by clicking on the link below.

Visit Now

Stay Up To Date!

Having foot problems?

Get our FREE eBook and learn how you can get rid of them!

The Patient Procedure Packet tells you everything you need to know before being HyProCured. Get your FREE copy today.

Understanding Plantar Fasciitis: Symptoms, Causes & Treatment

There are more than a million new cases every year from people suffering with chronic heel pain. It is estimated that we spend over $300 million dollars to treat it. Heel pain in adults is different from children. It typically occurs in people who are early middle age...

Why Overpronation Happens and What You Should Do About It

Pronation is a complex motion of the foot. The ankle bone turns inward and the rest of the foot turns up and out. It’s the opposite of supination, where the ankle bone turns outward and the rest of the foot turns inward. Pronation of the foot bone is important during...

Keep an Eye Out for This Pediatric Foot Problem

Most children are born with what may be considered underdeveloped arches in their foot; this is in reality a ‘fat’ foot. It’s simply due to the normal fat distribution at the bottom of the foot. At this age, bones and joints are flexible. Generally, the arch is...

What is obesity, and what causes it?

Obesity is one of the world’s most rapidly growing conditions. Even in our age of medical advancements, over 35% of the adults in the United States alone are considered to be obese. The only way to prevent this destructive chronic disorder is to take back control over...

What Causes Bunions and How to Get Rid Of Them

What is a bunion? A “bunion” is the bump on the inner side of the big toe joint. Some may consider this a “cosmetic” issue, but it is a major structural problem of the forefoot. A bunion continues to get worse with every step taken. Unfortunately, external measures...

What is Plantar Neuropathy? Symptoms, Causes, Treatment Options

Plantar Neuropathy is a common condition where the nerves on the bottom of the foot become diseased. Unfortunately, millions of adults have this progressive nerve disease. There are a broad range of associated symptoms from a feeling of walking on a stone or pebble,...

What Is Causing My Chronic Knee Pain?

Knee pain is one of the most common orthopedic complaints. Fifteen million people seek treatment for knee pain every year. It is thought that more than 100 million people suffer from chronic knee pain. In other words, 1/3 of all Americans currently have a knee pain...

Chronic Back Pain? Here’s What It Could Mean

Do you wake up every morning and find yourself asking “why does my back hurt?” You are not alone. Low back pain is the single leading cause of disability worldwide. It is the most common reason for missed work and is the second most common reason for visits to the...

Why Does My Hip Hurt?

Hip pain affects millions of adults every day. It has been estimated that 27% of individuals > 45 years of age have signs of osteoarthritis. The older and more active you are, the more likely you are to develop hip pain. Hip pain has been blamed on... Arthritis,...

Is Heel Pain Slowing You Down?

If you have heel pain then you have probably at least thought about heel pain treatment, or wondered if there is even a treatment available... Heel pain symptoms may include: Pain on the bottom of the heel Pain in the arch of the foot Pain that is usually worse in the...

Curious how HyProCure can help you?

Contact us Today!

Find a HyProCure Doctor Near You.

Find a Surgeon!