Many adults experience minor pain in their feet after exercising, playing sports, or working. The pain usually goes away after these individuals rub or massage their feet with medicated foot cream. But if the balls of your feet (soles) hurt so much that massaging them doesn't help, it's time to use more effective measures to ease the pain. Treat the pain in your soles with the two tips below.
Soak Your Feet in Epsom Salt
The pain in the balls of your feet is called metatarsalgia. Metatarsalgia affects one or more of the thin, long bones in your forefoot. Prolonged activities, such as playing basketball or working on your feet, can aggravate or inflame the bones and tendons supporting them.
If you soak your feet in Epsom salt (magnesium sulfate) in the evening, you may be able to ease up the pain and inflammation in them. Here's how you prepare and use your foot soak:
- Fill a large foot tub or container with warm water.
- Sprinkle or stir in 1/4 to 1/2 cup of magnesium sulfate to the water. The warm water will dissolve the Epsom salt.
- Place both feet into the tub and allow them to soak for at least 30 minutes. If the pain continues, you may soak your feet longer than 30 minutes.
- Remove your feet from the water, then pat them dry with a plushy towel.
After you dry your feet, cover them with soft slippers or cotton socks. If the pain returns or doesn't subside after using Epsom salt, seek professional foot care treatment.
Take Advantage of Professional Foot Care
Metatarsalgia can be a sign of something serious, such as bursitis or plantar fasciitis. Bone fractures and torn ligaments can also cause ball-of-foot pain. A podiatrist can determine the cause of your sole pain by examining your feet.
If a podiatrist discovers bone fractures or torn ligaments in your feet, they may wrap your feet to stabilize them. If you have bursitis or plantar fasciitis, you may need to wear shoes that support the balls of your feet. Some doctors use injections and pain medications to treat people with metatarsalgia. You may need to use several of these treatments to overcome your pain.
You may also need to take a break from your regular activities until your soles heal. If you have questions about how long to take your break, speak to a foot specialist right away.
You can learn more about the pain in the balls of your feet by contacting a podiatrist today or visiting websites like http://www.elmhurstpodiatry.com.