Approximately 75% of Canadians will experience some form of foot problem during their lifetime. Are you one of the 75% of people suffering? This week’s blog addresses two natural ways to relieve foot pain.
Common Causes of Foot Pain
Your feet are a complex system of 52 bones, 66 joints, 214 ligaments and 38 tendons and muscles. Even the smallest imbalance in your feet can cause pain. Fortunately, there are solutions but before we get into those let’s chat about some of the most common causes of foot pain.
1) Plantar Fasciitis
Plantar Fasciitis is one of the most common causes of heel pain. It occurs when the plantar fascia attaches to the heel bone. The plantar fascia is a thick band of connective tissue that spans the sole of the foot and provides shock absorption while walking. Those with plantar fasciitis will usually exp
erience pain in the morning, when they first step out of bed. The pain will usually improve over the day, with only a dull pain persisting.
Metatarsalgia results in a sharp pain in ball the foot, which is given its shape by the rounded ends of the metatarsal bones. The pain can feel like a person is stepping on a stone and is usually eased by sitting down and worsened by walking barefoot. Causes of metatarsalgia range from overuse, to decreased fat pad on the sole of the foot.
3) Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
Foot pain can also be caused by a pinched or irritated nerve. Those with Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome experience shooting, burning, aching, numb and/or tingling pain that radiates from the inside of the ankle into the arch and sole. The pain will often travel up the calf or higher.
Some other common causes of foot pain include:
• Achilles tendinitis
• Bone spurs
• Corns and calluses
• Hammertoe and mallet toe
• Plantar warts
• Septic arthritis
• Stress fractures
Relieve Foot Pain with Orthotics
In most cases these conditions are caused by injury, overuse, or improper foot function (or gait). Luckily, there are solutions.
One of the best things you can do to alleviate foot pain is invest in a pair of orthotics. Orthotics are shoe insoles, custom-made to guide the foot into corrected biomechanics. They are commonly prescribed to help with the foot problems discussed above. Orthotics also help to minimize shin splints, back pain and strain on joints and ligaments.
How do they work? Orthotics help foot problems by ensuring proper foot mechanics and taking pressure off the parts of your foot that you are placing too much stress on.
Chiropractic and Foot Pain
Though orthotics can work wonders, in some cases they aren’t enough. Oftentimes, foot pain is caused by improper foot function resulting from an unbalanced spine. Walking upon an unbalanced spine can cause poor biomechanics of the hips, knees and feet, resulting in foot cramping and pain. Stresses within the spine that create imbalances, decrease nerve function, and create symptoms such as foot pain, are called spinal subluxations.
Without spinal correction, you’re still walking around with improper body biomechanics, meaning foot problems will continue!
For those suffering from foot pain, consider booking an gait scan analysis to determine if orthotics could help. Or book an appointment with one of our chiropractors for a spinal assessment. Click here to book now.