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Common causes of stress fractures in feet


The most common cause of stress fractures is overuse

Overuse and reputation are the primary cause of stress fractures in feet. Running sports such as soccer, track, football, and basketball all present high risks of stress fractures in the athletes participating. The repetitive stress of long-term running, quick movements and awkward impacts create microscopic cracks in the bone that worsen as the intensity increases.

Athletes — and even casual runners — run more often than rest, which doesn’t allow these cracks in the bones to properly heal. The bone’s injuries and cracks start outpacing its ability to heal, resulting in greater damage to the foot.

New exercises and activities can cause stress fractures

Preparing your body for new workout regimens or increased levels of activity is imperative for avoiding stress fractures and other foot pains. When you start working out, be sure to take it slow, otherwise, you are priming yourself for injury.

Trying a new exercise exposes your foot to unfamiliar movements that have not been prepared for, which can result in a fracture. Even doing your same workout routine with increased activity can potentially cause injury. Try to avoid rapidly changing any pressure to your feet, which can happen when you change terrain, use improper technique, and increase intensity when exercising.

Weakened bones are risk factors for foot fractures

Osteoporosis, Paget’s disease, and other bone-weakening diseases make the individual more susceptible to stress fractures in the feet. When your bones are weak they are damaged at higher rates than they are able to repair. This causes bone fatigue and greatly improves your chances of developing stress fractures in your feet. The repetitive stress of seemingly minute tasks such as walking can damage your feet enough to constitute a fracture.

What are the symptoms of a stress fracture?

Stress fractures can have a multitude of symptoms, and the severity of symptoms is dependent on the magnitude of the fracture. The most common symptoms of stress fractures in feet include:

  • Pain that is not apparent during resting periods
  • Pain that is amplified during physical activities and/or day-to-day tasks
  • Bruising along and outside of the fracture
  • Tenderness at the site of the fracture that is sore to the touch
  • Swelling at the location of the fracture that persists when walking

If you believe you are experiencing symptoms of stress fractures in your feet, Kansas City Foot Specialists can help. We can successfully diagnose and treat your pain caused by stress fractures. Call us at (913) 338-4440 or contact us online to set up an appointment so that we can work toward relieving your pain.