Metatarsalgia Explained

Metatarsalgia Explained

Written with contributions from IDEASTEP Wellness Experts and the IDEASTEP education team. 

While metatarsalgia sounds exotic, the pain it brings to athletes and others is not. Simply put, metatarsalgia affects the ball of the foot, causing tenderness, serious pain and inflammation. The pain usually originates at the end of one or more of the metatarsal bones, which means just running or walking may cause increased pain. While the condition is most often associated with athletes who subject their feet to high impact activities on a daily basis, the average person can develop the condition as well. Over a period of months, the pain worsens, making even daily activities a challenge. Fortunately, sufferers can find relief through a variety of methods.

Symptoms of Metatarsalgia

Symptoms of metatarsalgia can include a sharp, aching or burning pain right behind the toes, but it can also present as general pain and tenderness in the forefoot. The pain may increase when sufferers flex their feet, run or even stand. The toes can become numb and sufferers can experience intense, shooting pains. Finally, those with metatarsalgia may constantly feel as if they have something hard in their shoes.

Metatarsalgia ExplainedMetatarsalgia Explained

Causes of Metatarsalgia

Runners, soccer players and other athletes who put constant pressure on their forefeet can experience this chronic inflammation and pain, but high impact activities aren’t the only cause of the condition. Patients may have malformed feet. Tight or weak toe muscles are also a factor, as are tight Achilles tendons, high arches and hammer toes. Wearing poorly fitting shoes and boots can also cause the problem. Anyone can suffer from metatarsalgia.

Treatment for Metatarsalgia

There are several approaches to relieving this condition. Perhaps the most common prescription is rest. Those with metatarsalgia are usually advised to take a break from activities and keep their feet up. Icing the affected area several times a day may help, as may some OTC medications, like ibuprofen. In some severe instances, a doctor may use steroid injections to minimize the inflammation.

IDEASTEP for Metatarsalgia or Forefoot Pain

The orthotic shape of IDEASTEP is particularly effective at redistributing the pressure that can lead to forefoot pain like metatarsalgia. Expertly designed to cradle the heel and stabilize the foot, the IDEASTEP shape can help minimize your symptoms and keep pain under control.

Which IDEASTEP insoles is best for Metatarsalgia?

To find the right IDEASTEP, start with your shoes. What type of shoes are you wearing? What you are doing in those shoes? We think you deserve to experience the I-never-knew-my-feet-could-feel-this-good benefits of the IDEASTEP shape in all your footwear. That’s why we make insoles for casual and dress shoes, shoe inserts for high heels, insoles for hiking, insoles for running shoes, insoles for snow sports, insoles for skates, and more.  Need help finding the best IDEASTEP for you?  Take the online insole finder quiz.

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