Have you ever found that at times the ball of your foot throbs, aches and becomes inflamed? Does this usually happen after you’ve been running around or generally active? Welcome to what we call - metatarsalgia.


Metatarsalgia is a common issue and one we have seen a lot over the recent weeks in our clinic at  Fit Foot Podiatry.


Why’s that you might wonder? Well, most of our clients have made resolutions to get fit and healthy – they have started to hit the gym and are now suffering the consequences!


We wanted to take a closer look at metatarsalgia!


What are the common symptoms?


Of course, each person will experience different issues, how ever the most common are:


• Sharp, aching or burning pain in the ball of your foot — the part of the sole just behind your toes.

• Pain that worsens when you stand, run, flex your feet or walk — especially bare foot on a hard surface — and improves when you rest.

• Sharp or shooting pain, numbness, or tingling in your toes.

• A feeling of having a pebble or something in your shoe.



What causes the pain?


There are multiple reasons why pain can occur, one person might have one cause, another might have multiple!


A few of the regular causes include.


• Wearing ill-fitting shoes. High heels, which transfer extra weight to the front of your foot or sneakers that are old and have zero support can be a real issue.

• Intense training or activity. Anyone who participates in a high-impact sport is at risk or runners can often live with this issue.

• Individual foot shapes. A high arch can put extra pressure on the metatarsals. So, can having a second toe that's longer than the big toe, which causes more weight than normal to be shifted to the second metatarsal head.

• Excess weight. Because most of your body weight transfers to your forefoot when you move, extra kilos mean more pressure on your feet. Losing weight might reduce or eliminate symptoms.


What can I do at home to help my foot pain?



• Rest. Protect your foot from further injury by giving it a break. Keep your feet elevated your foot after long periods of standing or walking. Avoid those high impact sports and stick to more gently exercise such as swimming or cycling. 

• Use ice. Apply ice packs to the affected area for about 20 minutes at a time several times a day. To protect your skin, wrap the ice packs in a tea towel.

• Wear the right shoes. Avoid too-tight or too-loose shoes and limit your wearing of high heels. Wear shoes the give you the right support for the sports you play.

• Consider arch supports or insoles. Using arch supports or insoles can help reduce the stress on your toes and foot bones. It’s best to speak to a professional to get the right ones for you. 


Pain in the ball of your foot can be debilitating and really cause a strain on your day to day life, however by taking a few simple steps you can help ease the pain and reduce the risk of it flaring up again.


Of course, if this pain is constant and won’t respond to any of the actions you take at home, we strongly suggest you come and speak to us in the clinic to help get you on the right track.


Appointments are available so book now!