Our feet are pretty forgiving. They take us where we need to go and help us stay fit by enabling us to participate in sports and exercise activities. They even accept being crammed into uncomfortable shoes now and then for the sake of fashion. However, we can push it too far. When an excessive amount of pressure is put on our feet we are susceptible to many foot disorders. One of them is metatarsalgia. This condition’s telltale sign is pain in the ball of the foot where the five long metatarsal bones end. At Superior Foot & Ankle Care Center we find that there are many ways that patients put too much pressure or uneven pressure on this part of the foot, including:
- Standing or walking for long periods of time on very hard floors or ground
- Frequently participating in weight-bearing activities such as running, dancing or basketball
- Wearing shoes that fit improperly or spending too much time in shoes with very rigid soles such as work boots or hiking shoes
- Gaining weight
Sometimes, metatarsalgia is caused by conditions that are beyond a patient’s control such as arthritis, flatfeet (overpronation), an injury or foot deformity. This condition is also more likely to occur with age as the fat pads on the bottom of our feet naturally begin to wear down.
If our podiatrists, Dr. Victoria Foley and Dr. Constance Omelas, diagnose metatarsalgia the first step will be to reduce the pain and discomfort that you are experiencing. This can usually be accomplished with rest, icing and anti-inflammatory medications. The next step will be to deal with the root cause of the condition. Depending on what the source of foot pressure is, the foot doctor may recommend changing the types of shoes you wear, losing weight, treating an existing condition or using a custom orthotic device to alleviate inflammation to the affected area.
Be good to your feet by not waiting to seek medical treatment if you are experiencing pain, discomfort or other unusual symptoms. Contact our Long Beach office for an appointment by calling: (562) 420-9800.