We rely on our feet more than we give them credit for. After all, they’re literally our soldiers on the ground. If you’ve walked a mile today, you’ve taken about 2,000 steps, which is enough to make your tootsies tingly.
However, while walking a lot or wearing improper shoes can be the main culprits of sore feet, there are number of other conditions that your painful peds could be squealing about. In fact, the Mayo Clinic lists more than 25 different causes of sore feet other than overuse, but let’s take a closer look at 5 of them…
1. Nerve Damage
The Mayo Clinic lists peripheral neuropathy as one of the possible causes of painful feet. This condition can cause weakness and numbness in your feet and burning or stabbing pain, and can be caused by traumatic injuries, infections or exposure to toxins.
One of the causes of this painful condition is diabetes, but the Clinic says the symptoms of the pain could be managed if you treat the underlying conditions. Medications can also be helpful.
2. Bone Infections
This is a painful infection that can cause inflammation of the bone marrow from infectious bacteria being passed through your bloodstream. KidsHealth.org notes that the infection primarily affects the longer bones in the legs and arms.
The source also notes that bacteria can cause this bone infection by direct contact, in other words through an open wound. The skin around the affected area can become swollen, and there could even be symptoms of fever and chills.
The National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases notes that gout pain is caused by uric acid crystals that are deposited in joints and other areas. One of those areas happens to be your big toe.
While this is very painful, a gout attack can have triggering factors such as stress and alcohol. The unpleasant sensations usually go away on their own within 10 days. Sometimes the attacks don’t re-occur for years, according to the institute.
4. Soft Tissue Tumors
The reason your feet are hurting could be from a cancerous tumor, warns Podiatry Today. While having a “ganglion” in your foot (a fluid-filled bump) is common, it may be overlooked as being benign (non-cancerous) according to the source.
While it’s a rare occurrence, sometimes these bumps can be more serious (cancerous even) and lead to complications that could require amputation in cases where the disease is untreated. If you have a strange bump or swelling on your foot that aren’t comfortable (even if there’s minimal pain), it may be best to go to the doctor.
5. Disease of the Arteries
EveryDay Health notes that more than 8-million Americans have peripheral arterial disease (PAD), which means plaque is blocking blood flow to your lower extremities causing pain and cramping. It can also slow down healing of wounds in the legs and feet.
What’s more concerning is that while the disease could cause pain in your feet, it also points to damage of the heart or brain. EveryDay Health says people with PAD might be at a higher risk of stroke or heart attack. Lowering your cholesterol and quitting smoking can help.