Our feet take a beating. Whether it’s standing on hard floors, pounding the pavement at a marathon, or just getting the recommended daily steps, we put a lot of pressure on our feet. Compared to the rest of the body, feet make up 25% of our bones, 18% of joints and 6% of muscles, and damage to any of these areas can cause serious effects on our bodies.
Healthy feet are vital for mobility — which is a significant part of a healthy lifestyle. If you have a foot injury or your feet hurt, the loss of mobility can cause physical and psychological problems, as you may not be able to enjoy doing the things you like most, such as walking, dancing, gardening, swimming, or playing golf.
Importance of Foot Health
If you have foot pain or discomfort, it is vital to know the cause. Sometimes, poor foot health is a sign of serious health conditions.
Numbness or tingling in the feet could be a sign of diabetes. Swelling in the feet and ankles could indicate kidney problems, heart disease, vein problems or high blood pressure. Joint stiffness could mean arthritis. If you have chronic foot pain, chronic limp, circulation issues or repeated infections, you should see your doctor or a podiatrist (foot and ankle specialist).
What Causes Foot Problems
Injury, overuse, or conditions causing inflammation involving any of the bones, ligaments or tendons in the foot can cause foot pain. Arthritis is a common cause of foot pain. Injury to the nerves of the feet may result in intense burning pain, numbness, or tingling (peripheral neuropathy).
Some Common Foot Problems
Whether you’re experiencing pain or not, check your feet daily and be on the lookout for these common foot problems.
Skin irritations: Sweaty feet can cause skin issues like athlete’s foot and eczema. Tightly fitting shoes or non-wicking socks can prevent feet from staying dry, making them more prone to rashes and infections.
Sore feet: Shoes that fit poorly can cause blisters, corns, and calluses, and can aggravate other foot issues.
Painful toes: Ingrown toenails occur when toenails are trimmed too short and can become painful if they grow into the skin of your toe.
Crumbling nails: Nail fungus is an infection that can make the nail become brittle and thick, and even cause it to separate from the nail bed.
Misshapen feet: Bunions are a bump on the outer edge of the big toe. Bunions can become more painful from the pressure of tight or pointed shoes.
Check out our infographic below which takes a look at How To Prevent Common Foot Problems.