If you are experiencing tremendous pain or inflammation in the ball of your foot, you may be suffering from a condition called metatarsalgia. Metatarsalgia occurs after an excessive amount of running or jumping, and can be exacerbated by wearing ill-fitting shoes. Metatarsalgia can stem from a number of physical characteristics, as well as high-stress activities.
While metatarsalgia is not usually serious, the extreme pain can force you to put things on hold. There are several treatment options available to help relieve your metatarsalgia.
Causes and Symptoms of Metatarsalgia
Metatarsalgia can occur in anyone, but certain activities or preexisting conditions may increase your chances of developing the condition. Repeated shock to the ball of your foot directly behind your toes, which can occur during basketball games and long, intense runs on hard surfaces, may lead to metatarsalgia. Certain foot shapes may be more prone to developing foot issues. If you have a hammertoe or are beginning to develop bunions on the side of your big toes, additional conditions may develop due to changes in your stance. High arches and uneven toes may add additional pressure to your metatarsals due to weight distribution on your feet.
A common sign of metatarsalgia is a burning pain in the ball of your foot, directly behind your toes. This pain may alternate with sharp pains or aches throughout the day, particularly after strenuous activity involving repeated shock to your feet. This includes walking, running and standing on hard surfaces for extended periods of time. An additional side effect may be feeling like there is something in your shoe.
Treating Metatarsalgia in Warren & South Plainfield NJ
If you have an improper stance, your weight distribution may put stress on different parts of your foot. Since pressure transfers to your foot as you move, any extra weight will shift back and forth between your heel and the ball of your foot. Adjusting to a well-balanced diet and regular exercise may reduce and even eliminate symptoms as your feet adjust. You should also switch out high heels or athletic sneakers for comfortable, well-fitting shoes with enough support for your arches, with custom insoles to absorb the shock from intense physical activity. If you are still experiencing burning or sharp pains in your feet after changing activities and your footwear, contact a podiatrist immediately. If your metatarsalgia is in conjunction with other conditions, such as a toe deformity, you may require surgery in order to fully recover.
If you are experiencing foot pain, contact the Ankle & Foot Specialist of NJ today! Dr. Jyotsna Thapar will perform a full diagnostic exam to determine the exact cause of your pain before developing a full, custom treatment plan to heal on your terms. Our offices can be reached at 908-222-8980 or 732-356-FOOT, or you can request an appointment at our Warren, Hillsborough or South Plainfield offices online.