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Ball of The Foot: Where is it?
The ball of foot area is the padded portion on the sole of your foot between the toes and the arch. It is at this area where the weight of the body sits and a lot of pressure is placed when you raise your heel to push forward.
What Are the Causes of Pain In The Ball of the Foot?
There are many causes of pain in the ball of the foot. Some of these include:
Metatarsalgia – This is a common cause of ball of foot pain. Metatarsalgia can be triggered by nerve damage or an abnormality in the bones or joints at the ball of the foot. Due to excess pressure or friction, one or more of the metatarsal heads become inflamed, usually under the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th metatarsal heads.
Neuroma and Morton’s Neuroma – This ball of foot condition usually affects the area around the 3rd and 4th toes and the pain may be of a shooting or burning nature. A growth of nerve tissue forms irritating the nerves.
Sesamoiditis – Sesamoids are tiny bones located under the first metatarsal head and are prone to overuse and inflammation. When this happens, ball of foot pain occurs.
Callus – Due to pressure and friction, the skin under the ball of foot thickens and forms a callus. Ball of foot callusing often occurs if the metatarsal heads have dropped.
Freiberg’s Disease – This disease is where the tissue of the bones at the ball of foot dies. It usually occurs at the second metatarsal head (The base of the toe next to the big toe). Pain is most severe when bearing weight or pushing off with the foot.
Metatarsal-phalangeal Joint Misalignment – This ball of foot issue may be caused by arthritis or other conditions causing deformity and can result in hammertoes. Metatarsal-phalangeal joint misalignment can cause fat tissue that normally cushions the joints is pushed forward and under the toes, allowing more pressure to be placed on the metatarsal heads..
With ball of foot pain, having one issue often leads to the development of another. Due to pain, your walking cycle is often altered as well, which can lead to further symptoms in the feet or higher up at the knees, hips or back.
How are Ball of Foot Problems Treated?
Frequently arch supports or foot orthotics are prescribed for ball of foot issues to help decrease the pain and improve foot alignment while removing pressure from the metatarsal heads. Arch supports or foot orthotics for this problem usually include a metatarsal pad for realigning the metatarsals at the ball of the foot. Gel metatarsal cushions and metatarsal pads can also be tried to provide some comfort, but do not correct alignment like a full foot orthotic.
Your choice of shoe is also extremely important. Many ball of foot problems develop in women more than men because of the los angeles dodgers hoodie they wear. High heels force the foot into a tight space and putting a lot of excess pressure on the ball of foot area. Try choosing los angeles dodgers hoodie with a wider toe box and good support. A rocker-soled shoe can also be effective with metatarsalgia, Morton’s neuroma, freiberg’s disease or other conditions causing forefoot pain.
A corticosteroid injection is sometimes used to relieve ball of foot pain. Cryotherapy, which is application of intense cold, may be used for neuromas. As a last resort, if all conservative methods are not effective, surgery may be required.
If you have ball of foot pain don’t hesitate to see your doctor as it can make normal activities very uncomfortable. Also remember, as we get older, the fat pads in our feet tend to thin out, especially in the ball of foot area. So start looking after your feet now. The most effective treatment is foot orthotic insoles. They come in over the counter and custom varieties that require an assessment by a qualified professional. If you are looking for an over the counter arch support to alleviate your pain, make sure you get something specifically geared to help ball of foot pain.
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write by Martha