Common Foot and Heel Pain

Plantar Fasciitis

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This is inflammation where 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.

The pain that this causes is generally worse when a person first steps out of their bed in the morning, and it usually improves with movement, although a dull pain 

often persists. Treatments for this include:

  • Foot stretching and icing
  • Custom made orthotics
  • Therapeutic and orthopedic shoes

Metatarsalgia (Ball of the Foot Pain)

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This presents as sharp pain in the area of the ball of the foot.  The pain can feel like a person is stepping on a stone and is usually eased by sitting down and 

worsened by walking barefoot.

Many different conditions can cause metatarsalgia—most often faulty foot functioning, overuse, or a decreased fat pad on the sole of the foot. Treatments for this include: 

  • Rest and ice the affected area 
  • Take pain relievers
  • Proper footwear 
  • Arch support through an orthotic

Bunions

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This is a knobby bump on the side of the foot, just below the big toe joint. Bunions can vary in size and are the result of the big toe shifting out of position over time and pressing against the second toe, which results in abnormal stress on the big toe joint and surrounding ligaments. 

Bunion pain can flare up on occasion and may be accompanied by an inflamed pocket of fluid over the bunion. This may cause redness and swelling, in addition to pain. Treatments for this include:

  • Padding and taping or splinting
  • Proper Footwear
  • Custom made orthotics

Standing all day?

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Standing all day can do a real number on your feet, legs, and back! Each year thousands of work-related foot injuries are reported as well as a number of sick days are taken because of leg and foot problems. You could be cooking at a restaurant line, cutting hair in a salon, teaching in a classroom, or at an assembly line, making an extra effort to take good care of your feet and legs can go a long way. Things that you can do to  prevent injuries:

  • Change positions frequently
  • Proper footwear
  • Custom made orthotics
  • Compression stockings/socks
  • Alternate standing and sitting