Beyond activities and shoe choices, there are certain inherited conditions and structural abnormalities that increase the odds of developing this forefoot pain. Hammertoe deformities, short first metatarsal bones, and high rigid foot arches (cavus foot) can cause or contribute to the issue. Additionally, those who have gout or rheumatoid arthritis are at a greater risk than otherwise healthy individuals.
Getting Back in the Game
The initial course of treatment for metatarsalgia entails taking time off from high-impact physical activities (those involving running and/or jumping). In all likelihood, it was an activity like this that led to the condition in the first place. Even if not, though, it is still important to give your body time to begin natural healing processes. During this time, we recommend doing low-impact exercises like cycling or swimming as great workouts to help you maintain physical conditioning, but without placing excessive force on your lower limbs.
Resting and activity modification are good places to start, but icing is another treatment option that can help by reducing both inflammation and pain. Icing the affected area for 20 minutes at a time, several times during the day, is beneficial. Always make sure you wrap the ice or ice pack in a thin towel first, to protect your skin.
We also recommend taking over-the-counter pain relievers for further pain management and inflammation reduction, but call our office first for specific dosage recommendations. We also have advanced treatment options available in Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy & MLS Laser Therapy.