Foot Pain --- Causes and Top 10
Natural Remedies
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July 10, 2012, last updated February 10, 2016

By Louise Carr, Associate Editor and Featured Columnist

[Health and fitness articles are reviewed by our team of
Doctors and Registered Nurses, Certified fitness trainers
and other members of our Editorial Board.]

Ohh, my aching feet! That's one of the most common
laments heard in America every day. Given that every step
we take forces two to three times our entire body weight
onto our feet, and that we take around 10,000 steps every
day, it’s not surprising our feet are shouting out in pain.

We walk more than 115,000 miles in a lifetime – that’s more
than four times round the globe. It’s no surprise that we all
suffer from foot pain at some point.

Our foot is a complicated and delicate structure made of 26
bones, 33 joints and more than 120 muscles, nerves and
ligaments. When foot pain strikes it could be due to a
problem with any part of the foot.

The key to resolving foot pain is to identify the location of
the pain and decide how best to treat it. How can you give
foot pain the boot? Which natural remedies help give your
feet a rest?

Why Does My Foot Hurt?

The first question to ask is -- where does my foot hurt?
Let’s take the heels.

Heel pain is the most common reason people seek medical
help for foot pain, according to surgeons at the 2010
Annual Scientific Conference of the American College of
Foot and Ankle Surgeons in Las Vegas. Every year 43
percent of us experience heel pain, according to the
American Podiatric Medical Association’s 2009 survey.

Heel pain can be caused by a number of problems including
plantar fasciitis, an irritation in the band of tissue that
connects your heel to your toes, and heel spurs, abnormal
bone growths on the bottom of your heel. You may have a
stone bruise caused by stepping on a stone or another hard
object or you can fracture your heel.

Does the ball of your foot hurt? Does it feel like you’re
walking on stones? You may be suffering from
metatarsalgia, pain and inflammation caused by ill-fitting
shoes or too much exercise. Or you could have
neuroma, a thickening in the tissue that surrounds the base
of your toes. (Read more about the
health dangers caused
by wearing shoes that are too tight.)

How about the arch of your foot? Arch foot pain may be
caused by plantar fasciitis, or by flat feet. Flat feet are
caused by the arches flattening out which results in pain
and problems walking.

Do you have toe pain? Toe pain is often caused by ailments
such as
arthritis, gout, bunions, ingrown toenails and
hammer toe. You may also be suffering sore feet because
you have calluses, a wide area of tough skin that makes
walking painful, or corns – smaller and more painful areas
of tough skin.

If your foot pain is all over the foot you could be suffering
neuropathy – nerve damage that can strike anywhere
on the feet and is most commonly caused by
(Read more about
nerve damage and numb toes.)

Look out for the symptoms of tendinitis too. Tendinitis is an
inflammation and swelling of the tendons and can cause
pain all over your foot.

Tight Shoes and Foot Pain

If you’ve ever forced your feet into too-tight shoes for the
sake of making a good impression at a party or because the
shoes you love weren’t available in your size you’ll know
that the wrong shoes can be a cause of major foot pain.
The American Podiatric Medical Association surveyed the
public in 2009 and found 88 percent of us had worn shoes
that were too small for our feet.

What’s more, 64 percent of American women regularly
wear shoes that hurt their feet, with 12 percent doing so on
a daily basis. Don’t sacrifice your feet for fashion – try a
well-fitting pair of shoes for a change.  (Read more the
health dangers of wearing too tight shoes.)

Top 10 Natural Remedies for Foot Pain

In many cases of foot pain you can resolve the painful
problem with rest, gentle stretches, over-the-counter pain
relief and properly fitting shoes. Avoid walking on hard
surfaces and going barefoot, and cut down on intense
weight-bearing activities such as tennis or running. Take
the weight off your feet and see if your foot pain eases.

We’ve taken a look at the scientific research surrounding
foot pain to give you the following 10 natural cures for
your aching feet:

Treat Morton's Neuroma to Relieve Foot Pain

Morton’s neuroma, a problem with the tissue that
surrounds the base of your toes, is a common problem. In
fact, 30 to 33 percent of the population suffers from this
painful foot condition according to 1997 research from the
University of Zurich, Switzerland and 2000 research from
Massachusetts General Hospital.

If you suffer from Morton’s neuroma you may feel you’re
walking on stones or that you have a stray object stuck in
your sock. The American College of Foot and Ankle
Surgeons recommends you pad your foot so your
metatarsal ach is supported, as well as ice your foot to
reduce the swelling.

Massage is also helpful, according to  the Physical Medicine
and Rehabilitation Department, University of Colorado
Hospital. (Read more
natural remedies for Morton's

Bunions Can Cause Foot Pain – How to Treat Them

Bunions are lumps and bumps that appear on the side of
your foot or the base of your big toe, causing foot pain and
difficulty walking. You get bunions if you wear ill-fitting
shoes that press your big toe out of position.

Tight shoes and high heels are problematic for this reason.
If you suffer foot pain caused by bunions, try taping your
feet and padding your shoes. If you continue wearing
shoes that cause bunions, surgery may be the only answer.
(Read more about
health dangers of tight shoes.)

Cure Plantar Warts and Resolve Foot Pain

Plantar warts are bunches of hard, painful skin on the feet
which are caused by the human papilloma virus (HPV). One
to two percent of us are suffering from plantar warts
according to the American Podiatric Medical Association.

If you’re one of those who suffers from plantar warts, you’
ll know how painful these tiny warts can be. Try treating
plantar warts with extract of marigold. According to a 2008
study from the Temple University School of Podiatric
Medicine, an extract of the marigold plant eases the foot
pain caused by plantar warts. (Read more about
remedies for plantar warts.)

More Cures for Plantar Wart Foot Pain

You can also try homeopathy to get rid of the little pains on
your feet. According to the results of a 1992 study by the
Department of Family Medicine, Université Laval, Sainte-Foy,
France a homeopathy remedy of Thuja 30c weekly, five
pellets of Antimonium crudum 7c daily, and one tube of
Nitric acidum 7c daily, for six weeks produced some pain-
relieving effects. However, the results were not conclusive
and may indicate that plantar warts are best treated in
another manner.

Cure Foot Pain with Zinc?

When it comes to warts on your feet, tackle the problem by
treating your immune system. 10mg of zinc a day resulted
in a reduction in foot warts in 86.9 percent of patients after
two months according to a 2002 study from Baghdad
Teaching Hospital, Baghdad, Iraq.

Warts are a common cause of foot pain and a healthy
immune system
, boosted by minerals like zinc, helps ward
off the virus that causes them.

Avoid High Heels to Skip Foot Pain

If your favorite shoe is a stiletto watch out – you may draw
admiring glances but you’re probably hurting your feet.
High heels and shoes that offer little foot support cause 64
percent of women foot pain according to a 2010 study from
the Institute for Aging Research of Hebrew SeniorLife in
Boston. If you suffer foot pain after wearing high heels the
obvious solution is to switch to flats.

Wearing high heels occasionally shouldn’t cause you more
than a little foot pain, but high heels worn every day can
shorten your Achilles heel and make it difficult to walk.
According to the American Orthopedic Foot and Ankle
Society, you should wear shoes less than two-and-a-
quarter inches high and if you wear higher shoes you
shouldn’t wear them for  longer than two or three hours a

Treat Foot Pain with Wheatgrass

You can ease the pain of plantar fasciitis, a chronic painful
condition of the feet
also known as "heel spurs", with
wheat grass cream.
 Plantar fasciitis is one of the most
common cause of pain in your heels. One out of every 10 of
us will experience plantar fasciitis in our lifetimes, according
to a 2014 study from the School of Medical Sciences, Santa
Casa de São Paulo, Brazil.

According to a 2006 study from La Trobe University,
Bundoora, Australia a topical application of wheat grass
was good for treating foot pain caused by plantar fasciitis.

Prolotherapy for Foot Pain?

Just what is prolotherapy, you may be asking. Prolotherapy
is based on the theory that pain is caused by loose
ligaments and tendons and that the muscles over-
compensate for these loose ligaments in order to stabilize
your joint, causing pain.

Prolotherapy involves injecting chemical irritants into the
area surround the affected ligament which is said to cause
tissue to grow in order to tighten the joint. Several studies
have looked at prolotherapy for treating plantar fasciitis,
such as a 1999 study from Caring Medical and
Rehabilitation Services, Oak Park, Illinois, but there is very
little direct evidence that says prolotherapy is good for
treating foot and joint pain.

Treat Foot Pain Caused by Gout

One extremely painful condition that causes foot problems
is gout. Gout is an inflammation of the tissues, most
commonly the big toe and the foot, caused by an over-
production of uric acid crystals. Gout can cause fierce foot
pain. According to one 2005 study from Johns Hopkins
University, Baltimore 500 mg of vitamin C a day helps
reduce uric acid levels and cuts the foot pain associated
with gout.

Use Tea Tree Oil to Treat Foot Pain

Tea tree oil can be used to treat plantar warts (a 2008
study from Belfast City Hospital, Belfast, Northern Ireland
tea tree oil applied once a day caused warts to disappear)
and also to treat foot pain caused by athlete’s foot. Athlete’
s foot is a fungal infection of the toes and feet that can
cause irritation, itching and foot pain.

A 2002 study from Royal Prince Alfred Hospital,
Camperdown, New South Wales, Australia discovered that a
tea tree oil solution was effective in clearing up athlete’s
foot in more than half of all cases.


Wear Gel Inserts to Ease Foot Pain

The soles of our feet have a natural layer of fat that, like
many things, wears thin as we age. This fat layer can also
wear thin if we pound our feet by playing sports or
exercising. To help, try wearing rubber-soled shoes even
when indoors. Also, try using gel inserts in any shoes you
wear to cushion the impact your feet endure daily.

12. Rheumatoid Arthritis Is a Common Cause of Foot Pain

Did you know that foot pain is one of the most common
symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis?

According to a 2010 study led by Drs. Otter and Lucas of
the University of Brighton in the UK, 93.5% of those with
rheumatoid arthritis have had foot pain and 68.2% of them
experience foot and ankle pain every single day.  (Read
more about
natural remedies to reduce the pain and
inflammation of arthritis.)

More recent studies have confirmed that foot pain is often
the first pain complaint of rheumatoid arthritis sufferers.

A 2012 study from the  Ankara Training and Research
Hospital in Turkey led by Dr. Pinar Borman examined 100
rheumatoid arthritis patients with an average age of 52
years. Of the 100 patients, 14 of them reported that foot
pain was the first sign of their rheumatoid arthritis.
Moreover, 89% of the patients had experienced foot or
ankle pain.

Being Overweight Causes Many Cases of Foot Pain

It seems intuitive that carrying too much weight on your
body frame should eventually cause foot problems. In fact,
it does. A 2012 study from Drs. Butterworth and Langdorf
of La Trobe University in Bundoora, Victoria, Australia
reviewed all existing relevant studies on this issue and
found a strong link between increasing body weight (BMI
or body mass index) and the occurrence of general foot
pain as well as chronic plantar heel pain.  (Read more about
normal waist size for women and men of different
heights and the
ideal weight for women.)

Omega-3 Fatty Acids Help to Relieve Foot Pain from

Fro foot pain caused by neuropathy, try using omega-3
fatty acids. Several studies have established that omega-3
fatty acids help to fight neuropathy. Foods rich in omega3
fatty acids inhibit the formation of pro-inflammatory
cytokines which trigger neuropathy, according to a 2012
joint study led by doctors from Tabriz University of Medical
Sciences and Tehran University.

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Warm Feeling in My Foot-Causes and Cures

Swollen Ankles -Causes and Cures

Swollen Ankles in Men

Night Cramps---Why Your Legs Seize Up At Night

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