Pain In the Balls of Your Feet

When your dogs are barking, you just want to kick off your shoes and kick back and relax. Sometimes, though, pain in the balls of your feet remains even after that well-deserved rest, reminding you it’s there as soon as you stand up! Ball of foot pain can occur for different reasons – from bruising to reduced fat pads, and more. The three most common culprits, however, are conditions known as metatarsalgia, Morton’s neuroma, and sesamoiditis.

Maybe it’s Metatarsalgia

This condition results from extreme stress placed on the balls of your feet causing inflammation around the metatarsal bones which connect your toes to your foot. It can occur for a number of reasons, including ill-fitting or worn out shoes, excessive weight, high arched-feet, toe deformities like bunions and hammertoes, and a sudden increase in the intensity of an athletic workout. Pain may be sharp, aching, or burning, and it can worsen gradually or come on fast.

More like Morton’s Neuroma?

In this case, a thickening of the tissues surrounding the nerves between your toes leads to numbness, pain and other odd sensations, such as the feeling of walking on a pebble stuck in your shoe. Typically, these symptoms occur between the third and fourth toes, but not always. The main contributor to this ball of foot pain happens to be high heels. These types of shoes not only squash toes together, but also put your feet in an abnormal position which places excessive pressure on the balls of your feet.

Seems to be Sesamoiditis

Often seen in runners and dancers, this is actually a form of tendinitis. There are two tiny bones called sesamoids that are located near your big toe and are connected by tendons. If these tendons become injured, irritated, or inflamed, the result is pain in the balls of your feet. An overuse injury, it occurs due to repetitive stress placed upon the area.

Treatment to take a bite out of pain

No matter what’s behind your ball of foot pain, treatment is typically the same. First and foremost, rest is needed to give your foot time to heal. Take time off from high-impact activities and choose an option like swimming instead. Take breaks from standing for long periods of time, and avoid doing so on hard surfaces. Ice and medication can help to reduce swelling and other painful symptoms. A switch in footwear is also recommended — stay away from high heels and make sure shoes offer plenty of cushion and are not worn out. Special pads and orthotic shoe inserts can also help to provide additional cushion as well as redistribute pressure away from the area. Finally, be sure to maintain a healthy weight to ensure you do not add any additional stress to the already burdened balls of your feet.

If pain in the balls of your feet is keeping you from doing daily activities or things you enjoy, make an appointment with our Clifton Park or Troy, NY office so we can determine the reason behind those barking dogs and get you back to feeling great. Just call (518) 273-0053 or use our convenient online contact form.


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Troy Office

763 Hoosick Rd.
Troy, NY 12180

Clifton Park Office

855 Route 146 | Suite 150
Clifton Park, NY 12065

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