Ball of the Foot Pain
Arthritis In The Ball Of My Foot [Causes, Symptoms & Best Treatment]
Arthritis In The Ball Of My Foot: Arthritis is common in #1) The big toe joint, #2) the 2nd metatarsal phalangeal joint & #3) The ball of the foot.
- Metatarsalgia: which means generalized foot pain without a specific cause.
- Second toe capsulitis: this is the inflammation of the second toe joint capsule.
- Capsulitis is related to hammertoe formation, and can lead to a plantar plate tear. There is some overlap between these three disorders. As they get worse tearing and ligament damage can occur.
- Morton’s neuroma: this is the damage and inflammation to the nerves between and underneath the metatarsal joints.
- Fat pad atrophy of the ball of the foot: this is the loss of cushioning in the ball the foot.
So, click on the photo gallery to see the specific causes of your ball of the foot pain!
Click on the photo gallery to see the specific causes of your ball of the foot pain!
Most Common Foot Arthritis Areas:
- Big toe joint arthritis is very common, it is most common in men 30 to 50 or older.
- It can also happen in women, but women are more likely to get midfoot arthritis.
- Big toe joint arthritis does not always need surgery, it can be greatly relieved with good orthotics good shoes.
- Click on the above link to see some treatment options.
- Arthritis in the ball the foot may occur secondary to a condition called metatarsalgia.
- This is a very common problem that occurs in people with too much pressure to the bottom of the foot.
- Arthritis gradually happens as the cartilage of the ball the foot wears away.
- Click on the above link to see if this is something that may be going on with you.
- Midfoot arthritis is very common, these types of problems occur when there is too much stress through the middle of the foot.
- This happens in people who are on their feet throughout their life, and are carrying a increased amount of weight.
- It is also more likely to occur on hard surfaces, and labor jobs.
- This is most likely to start occurring in people who are 30 to 50 years old.
- Top of the foot arthritis, is similar treatment for arthritis.
- As you can see in this picture there is a bone spur and uneven bone formation that can occur.
- This can irritate against the top of the shoe, irritating nerves and the skin.
- It may feel like you have a lump on the top or middle of your foot.
- This results in aching and tingling pain.
- This is a joint that does not get a lot of attention!
- Yet we see many many people with this is the main source of their pain.
- If you have pain along the outside and bottom of your ankle, this may be the subtalar joint.
- There are also many tendons and ligaments around this area that could be causing pain.
- The ankle joint is probably the most attention grabbing joint of the foot and ankle.
- It is very common to get a sprained ankle or a more severe ankle injury.
- If not rehabbed properly, it is possible for the ankle joint to develop arthritis, spur formation or increased pain.
- We do see many patients whose ankles have gotten worse, and continue to get worse as time goes on.
- Make sure you don’t let this happen to you, see a podiatristas soon as you can and seek treatment.
What Is Arthritis?
Arthritis refers to any irritation of the joint. It does not specify what type of arthritis you are dealing with, as there are many different types of arthritis possible.
- The most common causes in the ball of the foot are: Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Traumatic Arthritis & Gout.
- Rheumatoid arthritis effects both feet equally & many of the joints feel slow and aching. Rheumatoid arthritis is a systemic disease.
- Osteoarthritis is common in hammertoes, especially if the hammer toe becomes rigid.
- Traumatic arthritis can occur if there has been a previous stress fracture.
- Gout appears almost exclusively in the big toe joint only; if it does not look like this, consider something else.
- If these sound like you, follow the treatment link, otherwise consider the 4 major non-arthritis causes of ball of the foot pain.
Arthritis in the ball of the foot is possible, but if you are experiencing slow and aching pain, you are most likely experiencing a condition known as metatarsalgia or 2nd metatarsal overload syndrome.
- This is inflammation of the joints in the ball of the foot.
- This presents as an aching pain that gets worse with increased standing and activity.
- This most commonly occurs at the second metatarsal phalangeal joint, it is due to overuse and injury to the capsule and tendons.
- This is generalized pain in the ball of the foot. This is due to biomechanics overloading the front of the foot.
- This is a term used to cover all of the ball of the foot problems.
- Treating this condition should make most of the ball of the foot problems feel better.
- This is an aching, burning and throbbing pain in between the 3rd and 4th MPJ joints.
- This can result secondary to a nerve impingement in the bulb foot.
- This is a very common problem that we see frequently.
- This pain appears runners or people who put a lot of pressure on there feet.
- This almost always happens after a period of inactivity, followed by heavy duty training or work for a few days or weeks.
- Stress fractures occur as there is too much pressure and repetitive loading of the metatarsal bones.
- This is a very common problem that can take 6 to 8 weeks to get better with the correct treatment.
- The planter plate is a structure that holds the bottom of the metatarsal phalangeal joints together.
- It is possible that this become stretched out in tears over time.
- This can eventually lead to crossover toes, especially the second toe crossing over the big toe.
- This causes pain at the bottom of the second metatarsal phalangeal joint, the third metatarsal phalangeal joint and the fourth metatarsal phalangeal joint most commonly.
- A hammertoe is the curvature or contractor of the toes.
- This happens due to an imbalance of the tendons anchoring into the toe.
- There are three types of hammer toes.
- These are called hammertoe, the claw toe, and the mallet toe.
Ball of the Foot Pain Treatment Infographic:
Ball of the Foot Home Treatment:
- Consider taping, orthotics and great shoes as a combination to fix your foot problem.
- Products are not always necessary to fix your problem.
- The key is correcting the biomechanics that are leading to forefoot overload. Foot overload means too much pressure in the ball of the foot.
- Generally something called ankle joint equinus can lead to a too much pressure in the ball of your foot. This means your ankle is not flexible enough to move up and down.
- Ball of the foot pain treatment consists of two phases, first is control inflammation, next is to control bio-mechanics.
Remove Control Inflammation:
Massage & Ice Products:
- The metal ball is one of my personal favorites.
- This works great for your arch, less for the ball of the foot.
- These can help relax the arch or heel ligaments, leading to less pressure in the ball of the foot.
- Pills, creams and ice will never completely fix your problem alone. What they will do is reduce the pressure on the area.
Menthol Based Gels:
- Biofreeze is one of our favorites.
- These gels have been studied to work 2x as long as ice.
- This works great for the ball of the foot.
- Consider using these as options when resting on the couch or going to sleep at night.
- These can work great for loosening your muscles.
- This is means for your hamstring and calf muscles. This can loosen the ankle tightness putting pressure on the ball of your foot.
- This allows less tightness and pressure on the ball of your foot.
Ball of the Foot Stress Relief.
- The key is to prevent future pain.
- If you can get rid of the pain and swelling, this will let you start walking normally.
- If you can walk normally, the vast majority of your pain should gradually start to go away.
- This means proper cushion, proper stability and pressure relief from the front of your foot.
- This will relieve pressure from your big toe, your 2nd toe, your Morton’s neuroma, your plantar plate, hammer toes and joint capsules.
Best Metatarsalgia Shoes:
- Getting a great supportive pair of shoes will make sure that there is pressure removed from the ball of your foot.
- This is especially important if you have a metatarsalgia, a Morton’s neuroma, 2nd metatarsal overload syndrome and capsulitis!
- Consider shoes combined with a good supportive orthotic for best pain relief!
- The following link will show you what our favorites are.
Best Ball of the Foot Insoles:
- These are our recommended orthotics & insoles.
- There are different types for different shoes.
- Women’s shoes usually need a less bulky orthotic, but allow for less correction.
- A full length orthotic requires a running shoe, boot or comfortable walking/dress shoe.
Best Full Length Orthotics:
- Full length orthotics are the most recommended type for ball of the foot pain.
- Be aware that if they are too uncomfortable, it might be worth starting with a less corrective pair.
- Eventually you can then work your way up to these.
Best Dress Shoe Orthotics:
- These are a stronger option for shoes with tight dress shoes.
- Just be aware that less corrective orthotics & tight shoes are usually not a good combination.
Best 3/4 Length Orthotics:
- These may be a good option for ball of the foot if the full length orthotics are too tight or too uncomfortable.
Get A Great Dynamic Stretch:
- It is possible to stretch on your own, but these products can also really help!
- Personally I have the stationary block set up in my kitchen to stretch every day multiple times while getting my coffee!
- This will take pressure off of the ball of your foot.
Ball of the Foot Pain