Burning Feet & Metatarsalgia
Burning, tingling or even sharp pain through the front of your foot is often a sign of metatarsalgia. Whilst commonly localised to the space between the 3rd and 4th bones of your forefoot (metatarsals), it can occur between any of the bones, sometimes even extending into the toes. The sensation is often aggravated by extended periods of standing, walking or running. Over pronation or rolling in when walking reduces the space between the bones of your forefoot (metatarsals), leading to compression of the nerves and tendons. In some cases this can lead to an enlargement of the tissue, most commonly known as Morton’s Neuroma. Whilst this is most commonly seen in females between the ages of 25 and 55, it can affect anyone.
- Poor foot position causes the bones of the foot to move more freely causing pinching on the plantar nerve and surrounding structures
- Pinching of the nerve and surrounding structures causes them to bleed and swell
- Due to the reduced space the swollen nerve is now more likely to be pinched again
- Repetition of this cycle without treatment leads to a worsening condition over time
The goal of treatment is to reduce the inflammation of the nerve and surrounding tissues, and to increase the space between the bones of the foot in order to prevent the pinching.
- Padding & Taping – padding underneath the forefoot allows us to increase the space between the metatarsals, whilst taping helps to improve the foot alignment reducing compression of the nerves and tendons.
- Medication & Icing – ice and pain medication can be beneficial in easing acute pain in certain conditions.
- Myofascial Release – muscle release of the intrinsic muscles and ligaments on the sole of the foot can aid in reducing compression of the nerves and tendons.
- Orthotics & Footwear – innersoles and footwear that improve foot alignment are beneficial in reducing foot pronation and preventing irritation of the condition.