8 surprising reasons why your feet hurt
If you've experienced sore feet or discomfort, it can be hard to find the culprit. While we often blame high heels or ill-fitting shoes for foot pain, these eight surprising signs might be the cause of your foot woes.
The team at Good Housekeeping have found the often overlooked reasons behind foot pain. Here's our round-up of the leading causes.
1. You're not stretching
If you stretch your back and torso regularly, don't stop there. It's also important to give your feet a flex and exercise them to strengthen muscles and guard against issues.
"Stretching the foot before any physical activity can help to alleviate symptoms [of irritated and inflamed feet], as well as icing after," says podiatric surgeon Dr Bela Pandit in an interview with Good Housekeeping.
2. You've got hip, knee or back pain
Issues with a misaligned hip, knee or back can lead to walking crooked. When you put too much weight on one side of your body it can trigger joint inflammation, often on the back of the heel.
3. You're always on your feet
If your job involves a lot of standing, it could be the root cause of your foot pain. While most many people suffer from a sedentary lifestyle, standing for more than ten hours a day can cause swelling and soreness.
We're not saying you should trade it in for a desk job though - activity has been linked to a longer life and reduced risk of many diseases. Rather, be sure to break up your day with a few 15 minute rests, or use an ice pack to alleviate pain after a long day.
4. You just got a pedicure
Cutting the corner of your nail during a pedicure can lead to an ingrown nail. Ouch! To avoid it, ask your beautician to gently round out nails to a mid-length, and take extra care at the corners.
5. You've put on weight
Gaining an extra few kilos does have an impact on your feet. For every fluctuation in weight, the muscles in your feet either expand of contract. Be conscious of your shoe size if you're going through a considerable weight change.
6. You've got flat feet
Unfortunately the natural shape of your foot can cause discomfort. Whether you've got flat feet or a high arch, it will impact what shoes you should wear. See a podiatrist to discuss shoe inserts or orthotics.
7. You have diabetes
Diabetes can lead to circulation issues and muscle and joint problems. If you suspect this autoimmune disease is the cause, see your doctor.
8. You've changed your fitness routine
If you've recently changed gym classes, make sure you're wearing the correct sports shoes. Stress fractures can occur from wearing unsupportive shoes to high intensity activities, like boot camp or aerobics. Check with a specialist and consider orthotics to prevent injury.