Foot pain treatment depends on the cause of the foot pain. In many cases, home treatment methods such as application of hot or cold compresses and wearing over the counter corrective shoes or supports may help to treat foot pain. In some cases surgery or other medical treatment may be required to ease foot pain.
Foot Pain Treatments
At the first sign of foot pain, patients should try to rest the foot or feet and apply compresses. Roughly 90% of patients with foot pain will respond well to conservative treatment like physical therapy. Plantar fasciitis, the most common cause of foot pain, will often respond to this type of treatment. In some cases, overstrain injuries may cease to be painful after resting and applying compresses, as well. If the skin is hot to the touch, ice or cold should be applied. If skin is cold or normal body temperature, soaking the foot in warm water or applying warm compresses may be beneficial. Click the picture below to see our Heel Pain Program to see if it is right for you!
Corrective Shoes and Supports
If symptoms of pain indicate plantar fasciitis or injuries stemming from abnormally shaped feet or improper posture, corrective shoes or supports may be helpful. Orthopedic shoes or supports are available at many retail and shoe stores. Shoes and supports are designed to take pressure off of sensitive areas of the foot and disperse weight more evenly throughout the foot. Corrective shoes and supports may prevent worsening issues and prevent future complications, as well as helping to treat current foot pain.
Medications may also be helpful for treating foot pain. Inflammation often accompanies and worsens foot pain, as the swelling increases the pressure on the foot. Anti-inflammatory medication may help to decrease this pressure, often while providing pain relief. If swelling is not an issue, over the counter or prescription pain medication may be helpful in foot pain treatment. Many medications can help at first to control pain, but then should be tapered off slowly as pain continues to decrease.
Other Treatment Types
Specific foot complications may require a variety of other medical treatments. Ingrown toenails require that the nail be cut away from the skin and that the punctured skin be treated to prevent infection. Sprains or fractures may require a brace or cast to set the bones and heal properly. Bunions and hammertoe abnormalities may benefit from corrective braces or supports.
In some cases when all conservative treatments fail, surgery may be required to treat foot pain. Surgery can be done to relieve the pressure of plantar fasciitis, if other treatment methods do not work. Surgery may also be done to decrease bunions or correct hammertoe, if the abnormalities become extreme and begin to cause intense pain. In some cases, surgery may be necessary to remove painful calluses or to correct a fracture or sprain.
“Foot Pain.” Medline Plus. U.S. National Library of Medicine, 26 Feb 2014. Web. 14 Mar 2014. <“Foot Pain.” Medline Plus. U.S. National Library of Medicine, 26 Feb 2014. Web. 14 Mar 2014.
“Surgery.” American Podiatric Medical Association. American Podiatric Medical Association, n.d. Web. 14 Mar 2014. <http://www.apma.org/Learn/FootHealth.cfm?ItemNumber=1560>.
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