Have you been experiencing foot pain that seemed to appear out of nowhere? Perhaps you've noticed a burning pain in the ball of your foot, or you feel as if there's a pebble in your shoe, but you can't see anything visible. Foot pain without any visible signs of swelling or a lump may be caused by Morton's neuroma.
What is Morton's neuroma?
When the tissue in your foot becomes thickened or inflamed, it can press on the nerves leading to the toes. This results in pain and burning in the ball of the foot. It can also cause numbness or a pins and needles sensation in the foot or toes.
What causes Morton's neuroma?
Anything that causes irritation to the foot can lead to the development of Morton's neuroma. Being active in sports, especially those that place a lot of strain on the foot, such as dancing or jumping, can cause inflammation.
Sports that require tight-fitting shoes can also cause Morton's neuroma. Rock climbing and skiing are two examples of sports that require tight shoes that can place excessive pressure on the foot. Wearing ill-fitting shoes that place strain on the foot, such as high heels, can trigger irritation.
Having an existing foot condition can make you more susceptible to developing Morton's neuroma. People who have flat feet, high arches, or bunions may be at risk.
What can you do if you think you have Morton's neuroma?
If you develop foot pain, reduce your activity for a few days and avoid anything that may stress the painful area. Wear comfortable shoes and avoid participating in sports. If your pain persists more than a few days without relief, you should consult a foot doctor for further evaluation.
How is Morton's neuroma diagnosed?
Your foot doctor may use several methods to diagnose and confirm your condition. Your physician will examine the foot to look for tender areas or other concerns. Additional tests, such as MRI, ultrasound, or X-rays, may be necessary.
How is Morton's neuroma treated?
Conservative measures are usually tried first. These may include applying ice to the area, wearing supportive foot pads in your shoe, and taking anti-inflammatory medications to reduce pain. If these measures don't provide relief, your foot doctor may recommend injections or decompressive surgery.
Dealing with a painful foot is frustrating and can prevent you from enjoying your daily activities. Never ignore foot pain that lasts more than a few days. Seeing your foot doctor for a proper diagnosis of Morton's neuroma and to discuss treatment options is the first step on the road to recovery.
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