The best thing you can do to relieve arthritis in your feet is to make an appointment with a podiatrist, who can determine the true cause of your foot pain and prescribe the necessary course of treatment accordingly. Here are six other ways to relieve arthritis pain in your feet.
Wear comfortable shoes
Arthritis often stems from having worn uncomfortable and improperly fitting shoes for an extended period of time. Stop wearing high heels, which place excess pressure on the balls of your feet, and wear comfortable, supportive shoes that are wide enough not to promote or worsen the development of calluses or bunions. You may also want to wear shoes that offer arch support, which can help stabilize joints in your feet that move around more than necessary.
Have your feet massaged
A foot massage can increase blood flow to your feet and often provide relief from arthritis, says Dennis Frisch, DPM, from Boca Raton. If you’re giving yourself a foot massage, start at your toes, and work your way down to the heel, kneading your toes and the balls of your feet thoroughly.
Stretch your Achilles tendons
Stretching your Achilles tendons will help strengthen your feet and improve flexibility and range of mobility, all of which can help provide relief from foot arthritis. Get into the habit of wiggling your toes as often as you can remember, or during commercials when you’re relaxing in front of the television.
Consult with your podiatrist to find out whether orthotics can help relieve arthritis foot pain. Your foot doctor can either provide you with custom orthotic shoe inserts, or recommend the use of a cane or braces to help with pain relief. Frisch reports that some patients can also find relief from arthritis by taping their toes together. If you just need shoe inserts, either purchase them over the counter from a shoe retailer, or have them custom-made by your podiatrist.
Topical treatments and medications
Topical treatments that contain capsaicin can often provide relief from arthritis foot pain, and can be found over the counter at most drugstores under the brand names Zostrix and Icy Hot. Alternately, you may be able to find pain relief by taking over-the-counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as naproxen or ibuprofen. While most over-the-counter treatments are considered safe for use, consult with your podiatrist first before using these treatments for arthritis pain relief.
Though surgery is often viewed as a last resort, your podiatrist may recommend undergoing foot surgery to treat arthritis if no other treatment methods are effective at reducing your pain. Frisch says that the most common foot surgeries for arthritis are joint replacements and joint fusions. Joint replacement is performed when there isn’t enough joint movement, whereas joint fusion is performed if arthritis is stemming from too much movement. Either way, talk to your podiatrist to find out whether foot surgery is ideal for you based on your foot health.
Are you suffering from arthritis or foot pain? Call Kansas City Foot Specialists to schedule an evaluation at (913) 338-4440, or request an appointment online so we can determine the true cause of your injury and get you back on your feet.