Arch Pain (Pain in the foots Arches)
Foot Arch pain refers to any pains or aches that occur in the underneath or “sole” of the feet, Most arch pain can be attributed to the plantar fascia, either a simple strain of the ligament or swelling. Heel spurs is a condition that can lead to plantar fasciitis (a swelling or strain of the plantar fascia).
Overuse due to sports or long periods of walking or standing are prime factors that can cause pain in the foot’s arch.
Other contributory factors include poor quality footwear (or badly fitting shoes) excessive weight or a high impact shock such as landing when jumping or taking a misstep.
Should an arch pain or ache be persistent wearing insoles or seeing a foot specialist should be considered.
Causes Of Arch Pain
Prime causes of arch pain are multiple and varied and include injuries to the foot either sports or general wear and tear.
Plantar fasciitis is probably the most common cause of arch pain (over-pronation or flat feet are primary causes), The plantar fascia, situated between the heel bone an the toes is a thick, wide ligament of fibrous tissue. When the ligament stretches excessively, pain and or discomfort occurs (plantar fasciitis).
Pain associated with plantar fasciitis is most likely more intense first thing in the morning, sometimes after long periods of inactivity. Acute pain or inflammation of the plantar fascia is usually in the heel and arch areas of the foot or feet. heel spurs (bony protrusion) can be both a contributory factor and also a result of plantar fasciitis.
Weakness in the muscles or ligaments, any overt tightness can lead to pain along the underside of the foot particularly the arches.
Symptoms Of Arch Pain
Pain in the foot’s arch may settle down in the short term but can return at some point. Pain coming from the underneath of the foot or particularly in the area of the foot’s arch is quite common in those that spend long periods of time on their feet.
The bones in the feet are supported by various ligaments and tendons that control forces that are transmitted through the foot in everyday situations, walking, running jumping etc.
Pain in the foot’s arch or anywhere on the underside of the foot often stem from problems with the position of the actual arches themselves.
Flat feet are a common cause of painful arches in the feet. Muscular weakness, overloading or tightness can be a root cause of pains or aches in the feet. Resulting damage to the plantar fascia or bones cause pain or even stress fractures.
Pain In The Arch Diagnosis
Any doctor diagnosing arch pain will need to know the circumstances involved. A thorough physical and visual examination of both feet will be required.
Manipulation of the feet, sometimes with the application of pressure might be required.
Any deformities, tender areas, or differences in the bones of the foot or arch between feet should be noted.
Muscular function should also be tested and appraised. You will also be observed while standing, walking, running on the spot.
The nerves in the foot need to be tested. An x-ray, MRI, or a scan of the foot’s bones and arch should also be taken.
Arch Pain Non Surgical Treatment
When pain or discomfort in the arch area of the foot is first noticed, you can attempt treating your foot with rest, ice, compression, and elevation (commonly known as RICE).
Medications may be used to reduce discomfort and pain but always tread warily when self medicating. Tylenol and aspirin, ibuprofen, or naproxen are an accepted response to any pain or inflammation.
Rest allows tissues to heal and avoids any unnecessary stress to the area. Ice should never be applied for longer than 20 minutes. Ice should always be wrapped in a plastic bag or towel. Commercial ice packs are usually far too cold and should be avoided.
Compression can be achieved by wrapping the injured area of the foot with a bandage. Elevation (raising the affected foot) prevents swelling and can ease any associated pain or discomfort.
Arch Pain Surgical Treatment
A severe case of plantar fasciitis, where non surgical methods have failed may require cortisone injections to relieve the pain or discomfort. In the event that cortisone injections also fail, a surgical procedure may be reqired. Such a surgical procedures may involve cutting the plantar fascia.
Fusing of the foot’s or ankle bones together may be a requirement in severe cases. Removal of any bony growths (heel spurs) might be needed. Cutting or changing the shape of the bones (osteotomy) is an option.
Cleansing of the tendon’s and or adding tendon from other parts of the body may be needed to help balance the tendons form an arch. This surgical procedure is known as tendon transfer. Grafting of bone to the foot to enable the foot’s arch to function correctly.
Arch Pain Prevention
Always maintain a healthy Weight, Your feet take the weight of your body and overweight people commonly suffer from foot related pain. Try to be fit and healthy. Flexibility in all areas of your body is essential. tight muscles can add extra stress on your feet.
Wearing high heels can be disastrous to your feet and ankle, try wearing shoes with less of a heel. Any poor quality or ill fitting shoes are a recipe for disaster. Do not stand for too long in the same position, taking rest breaks can save you from expensive medical bills and might prevent you from being too tired to actually enjoy your life,
Drinking plenty of water can help prevent cramping of the foots muscles. It is as always a good idea to keep to a healthy diet.