Foot pain is very common among the general population. Feet support our body weight and are constantly under pressure. We spend a tremendous amount of time on our feet, getting us where we need to go. It is no wonder people of all ages experience a wide range of foot pain. So, proper foot health is important to maintaining an active and healthy lifestyle because much of what we do involves our feet. If you are one of the many people experiencing foot pain, mild or severe, there are many affordable and effective solutions to alleviate foot aches and discomfort.
One of the most common causes of foot pain is lifestyle. Do you spend most of your days standing? Do your shoes fit properly? These are two important questions to consider when evaluating the cause of your foot pain and in seeking a solution best suited to your needs. Pain management could be as simple as a shoe fit inspection. A properly fitting shoe should be at least half an inch longer than your longest toe, allowing for about a thumb tip amount of wiggle room.
In addition to lifestyle choices, there are many medical issues and foot infections that are closely associated with foot pain as well, such as corns and calluses. Corns and calluses are common skin conditions involving the thickening and hardening of the skin, especially on the soles of the feet or other areas subject to increased pressure or friction. A salicylic acid treatment has proven most effective in remedying the build-up of thickened, dead skin and is available over-the-counter in the forms of drops, pads, and plasters. Do not attempt to cut away the corn or callus as this will likely result in a potentially dangerous infection.
The other most common cause of foot pain is age. One in three people over the age of 65 suffer from foot pain. Due to the age-related decline in foot health, the elderly are considered high risk for a condition known as plantar fasciitis, the most common cause of heel pain. The loss of fatty tissues around the heel as people age puts more stress on the plantar fascia, a connective tissue connecting the heel to the toes, and the heel bone, causing heel pain. Age-related foot pain in older people is oftentimes alleviated by orthotics. A custom-fit shoe insole, tailored to the unique contours of your feet, like P.O.L. CustomFit™ orthotics, offers increased arch support and the padding necessary to compensate for the loss of cushioning on the foot and the thinning of skin to prevent further damage, aches, and pains.
Heel spurs are another medical condition, similar to plantar fasciitis, associated with heel pain. Heel spurs occur when calcium deposits build up on the bottom of the heel bone that put an increasing amount of stress on the plantar fascia. Three easy and effective solutions to foot pain caused by planet fasciitis and heel spurs are at-home foot exercises, foot stretches, and custom-made orthotics.
Whereas foot pain in older people typically roots from other medical conditions or the natural aging process, foot pain in younger people is often attributed to sports injury, aching muscles, or stress on the foot bones. If you are suffering from a physical foot injury or have foot pain in general, following these tips may help relieve your discomfort and pain:
Ice the affected area to reduce swelling and inflammation of damaged tissues
Rest and protect the damaged area as much as possible
Elevate the foot causing you pain to drain fluid and reduce swelling
Compress the affected area for the first 24-72 hours
Take an over-the-counter pain reliever
Other considerations for easing foot pain at home include wearing comfortable, supportive shoes, maintaining a healthy weight to relieve the load on your feet, stretching your foot and calve muscles, and practicing good foot hygiene to reduce your risk of infection.