Foot pain can change your life. Fun activities such as hiking, running, or just basic movement from one spot to another can become extremely painful when you’re suffering from this kind of pain.
But that shouldn’t be the case!
Yes, you read that right. It’s possible to get rid of even the most extreme foot pain!
Don’t let this pain change how you live your life – here are some proven tips to get rid of foot pain once and for all!
1. Soak Your Feet in Warm Water
Soaking your feet in warm water mixed with a bit of salt is one of the best home-based remedies for foot pain. Here’s all you need to do if this option works for you.
Submerge your foot in warm water for around 20 minutes and repeat the procedure every time your foot feels sore. But, be sure to test the water temperature before submerging your foot. This procedure helps relieve your sore foot muscles, which in return reduces swelling.
Apply moisturizer after every session to prevent cracked feet or irritation.
2. Wear the RIGHT shoes
Wearing tight-fitting shoes can cause foot pain and other conditions such as ingrown toenails, bunions, etc. The worst thing to do when you have ingrown toenails is attempting to cut them by yourself. This could cause further damage to your toes and cause more pain.
Consult a foot doctor instead to examine the condition of your foot. The doctor will advise you on the right shoes to wear based on your foot structure, lifestyle, among other factors.
3. Practice The RICE Method
For starters, this method has nothing to do with edible rice. So if you had already taken a packet of rice out of the pantry, you might want to place it back.
Instead, it’s actually a proven method recommended by podiatrists to relieve foot pain.
Here’s what RICE stands for.
Getting some good rest is one of the easiest ways to relieve foot pain – the only requirement is to give your foot a break.
Regularly icing your foot can help soothe the pain. But if you don’t have an ice pack, it’s advisable to use a face towel between the ice and the sore foot to avoid direct contact with the skin. For best results, ice your foot for at least 20 minutes, wait for 40 minutes, and then resume.
Icing also reduces swelling by restricting blood flow to the affected area and slowing down cellular metabolism.
Consider using cold therapy systems or cryotherapy chambers to reduce the pain and speed up recovery on the injured or sprained area. Cold therapy combines the benefit of therapeutic cold and targeted pressure to relieve foot pain.
Compression helps control swelling by squeezing the swollen foot to prevent further fluid buildup in the area. Compression involves wearing special socks or compression stockings that help push fluid away, accelerating healing in the process.
Alternatively, you can have someone massage your sore foot gently to promote better blood circulation in the affected area or use static and elastic bandages to adjust the pressure.
Elevating the foot reduces swelling and relieves pain. In addition, it leads to reduced blood flow to the affected area, preventing the accumulation of excess fluid. You can do this while seating, reclining, or using pillows as props while in bed.
4. Take Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs
Away from the RICE method, Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) such as Ibuprofen and Acetaminophen can also help alleviate foot pain. But it’s important to note that acetaminophen only helps relieve the pain but doesn’t reduce the inflammation.
Alternatively, you can opt for diclofenac, an anti-inflammatory drug available over the counter and applied on the skin to reduce inflammation. NSAIDs are only recommended for severe pain or when other foot pain remedies won’t work.
5. Consider Stretching and Simple Exercises
Simple exercises can help alleviate pain caused by plantar fasciitis. For example, stretching out the fibrous band of tissue that connects the heel bone to the toes can help reduce the strain on the foot and ease heel pain.
6. Change Your Lifestyle
Obesity is one of the major causes of aching feet. It’s also one of the leading risk factors for diabetes, which often causes nerve damage and foot pain. This is because excess weight results in increased strain on your ligaments and foot muscles.
Adopting a healthy lifestyle helps relieve foot pain and also improves your overall health.
7. Consider Prescription Custom Orthotics
Most foot doctors recommend custom orthotics to prevent various foot problems such as tendinitis, diabetic foot problems, plantar fasciitis, heel pain, among others.
Orthotics are devices specially made to support and accommodate your foot structure.
Generally, orthotics can:
- Correct the damage caused by wearing unsupportive footwear by creating an equal distribution of pressure on the foot as you walk or run.
- Support the longitudinal arch and provide the correct alignment required to reduce over-pronation.
- Relieve foot pain caused by repetitive stress on foot ligaments by absorbing shock and providing cushioning.
- Provide alignment, help keep your foot closer to a neutral position and reduce stress exerted on the plantar fascia.
- Help with mobility and improve foot movement.
For this option to work, your podiatrist will first examine your feet, ankles, and legs and then capture 3D images before recommending prescription orthotics.
The Bottom Line
Foot pain is treatable – no doubt about that. But when the pain persists even after following these tips, it’s advisable to consult a professional foot doctor.
This is because the unusual pain could signify something else that only an experienced foot specialist can tell.
For example, you may need special footwear, especially if you walk or stand for long hours at work. In extreme cases, surgery may be necessary.