How Do We Treat Foot Pain?
The first question in foot pain is where is it coming from? We like to think it’s a matter of the region of the body but in truth the specific origin of dysfunction is found in diagnostics. Are you having foot pain? What part of the foot? What movements trigger the discomfort? What is the factor that’s causing consistent reinjury causing you not to heal?
Every patient that comes into this office starts with range of motion, orthopedic testing, a palpative exam, and of course, x-rays. We go through each of these tests to find out exactly where the root of the foot pain is and what we see most often are these issues:
Types of Foot Pain
Foot & Ankle Sprain/Strain
Fallen or Unsupported Arches
What Causes Achilles Tendonitis?
The Achilles tendon comes down from the calf and attaches under the heel. When there is inflammation in the Achilles tendon it is sometimes generalized as foot and ankle pain. You use this tendon every time you walk, jump, run or push up to the ball of your foot. 9 times out of 10 injuries to this is some level of repetitive movement usually from sports like basketball.
Sometimes the cause of this injury is tight calf muscles. Most of the time the foot and ankle pain isn’t as prevalent early on but the day after strenuous activity. Essentially the tendon forms microtears from the strain. You might notice swelling and redness around the Achilles tendon.
Why Isn’t My Plantar Fasciitis Healing?
Plantar fasciitis is a beast because the cycle perpetuates itself. You don’t feel the foot pain unless you are standing or walking or first thing in the morning when you get up.
People usually report relief when they sit down and get off their feet. The reason there is a cycle is that the piece of tissue running along the bottom of the foot attaching to the ball and heel acquires tears every time you stand. This propensity to tear is related to tightness of the fascia from not stretching the foot most of the time. Once its torn, stretching is the last thing you want to do.
Staying off of the foot allows minor healing and increased tightness from inflammation. Round and round you go. So, what is the solution? Heal the fascia, stretch the fascia, and support the fascia. Orthotics are a must!
Why Are My Toes Going Numb?
Metatarsalgia is a word women know better than men. Its common with the frequent use of high heels. The metatarsals or smaller toe bones have excessive pressure placed on them with incline shoes. After a time, numbness in the toes, burning, and foot pain are common. The inflammation that develops due to pressure on the nerves and tissues causes pain long after the shoes are off.
Foot & Ankle Sprain/Strains
The most common cause of sprains and strains are sports injuries, accidents, and overuse. Each injury can be a little different depending on the focus of the strain on the foot or ankle.
The medial and lateral ligaments support the foot during inverted and everted movement. When there is strain on this movement there is inflammation, swelling, and pain around the joint. An evaluation is necessary to determine where the injury is to ensure treatment at the root of the problem.
Orthotics and Arch Support
Arch, ball of the foot, and heel support are fundamental not just for the foot and ankle, but the entire body. The impact of appropriate or inappropriate movement in the foot translates all the way up the mechanical chain. When the arch falls and the foot pronates or supinates it creates added pressure on the ankle causing foot pain.
Foot Pain Treatment Options
Shockwave Therapy (ESWT)
Shockwave therapy is an incredible and well researched way to treat Plantar Fasciitis, tendinopathies, and many other chronically reinjured conditions. This treatment for foot and ankle pain sends a focused specific frequency of pulse into the tissue reestablishing the healing process. It increases collagen production, reduces muscle tension, and eliminates pain.
Anti-Inflammatory Laser Therapy
Infrared light therapy energizes on a cellular level speeding up healing and increasing circulation. It relieves pain and flushes out inflammation. This treatment can be used in any foot or ankle injury to increase mobility.
Pulsed Electromagnetic Field Therapy (PMX)
This therapy sends frequency into the tissues, bone, and finally the cell that detoxify the cell and restored cellular health and function. This treatment is groundbreaking for healing sprains, strains, and tendinopathies. PMX increases healing, bone density, nerve response, and as a result range of motion.
Custom and Selected Orthotics
With an in-office foot scan we can order our patients custom orthotics to their individual needs. These orthotics are guaranteed for over a year. For those without exceptional differences we provide Spenco Support Max orthotics that support at the ball of the foot, arch, and heel. Having a good support under and around the feet is integral in treating and healing from foot and ankle pain.
Nutrition & Rehabilitation
Taking a whole body approach to care means including the understanding with nutritional deficits and areas of weakness that support the body. We have broad recommendations for supplemental support for all patients but as we dive into each patient’s condition we often recommend supplements that will support their individual treatment.
When considering how to help our patients get back to a functional lifestyle we feel its important to plan for the long term. To avoid reinjury and teach the body appropriate movement after years of coping movement we have a full rehabilitative suite to assist our patients to long term wellness.
Chiropractic is a key part of what we do to get our patients well. Increasing mobility and range of motion, as well as removing nervous system interference. Chiropractic is the foundation of healing. Our doctors are specialized in active release technique, Thompson technique, sports injury & rehabilitation, and extremity adjustments.
How Will You Progress Toward Total Health?
One of the greatest struggles we face as individuals is prioritizing our own health in a world of distractions. We often wait until the pain is too much to bear or you can’t move a region of your body the way you could before. These are late strategies. You can save yourself time and money by taking a more preventative or at least early mindset to being proactive about issues you have.
We go through a comprehensive evaluation with all of our patients to find the root of of their condition to see a lasting result. We can meet our patients wherever they are in their process, give us a call to treat your foot pain with a non-surgical, non-pharmaceutical approach!