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Why do my feet hurt when I walk?

young woman in the street feeling pain in her ankle

young woman in the street feeling pain in her ankleAre you blaming the frosty autumn weather for making your feet hurt when you walk or is there something more serious underpinning the pain? Unfortunately, many Australians live with foot pain daily.

Often we think the pain will disappear on its own, trialling simple lifestyle changes with no improvement.

Whether it hurts to walk first thing in the morning, after you sit down, or even every time you walk barefoot, it’s important to identify and understand what is causing the pain.

Without identifying and treating the condition, you’re limiting your ability to exercise, work and wear enclosed shoes – unavoidable demands of a modern life.

So, what are some of the causes of foot pain when walking?

Plantar Fasciitis (Heel Pain)
Plantar fasciitis or ‘heel spur syndrome’ is a condition that causes severe pain under the heel or arch. Generally, the pain is worse the first few steps in the morning, after sitting and towards the end of the day. The pain is caused by micro tears to the plantar fascia (the long tight tendon/cord under the arch) at the attachment point under the heel bone. Left untreated, the pain will persist for a long time.

Corns and calluses
Foot pain when walking may result from abnormal pressure or friction on the skin, with hard skin cells becoming thicker and thicker causing a callus. This can eventually lead to a central core, or corn, pushing deep into the tissue.

Ingrown nails
It may also be the result of a nail protruding into the side of the skin surrounding the nail, or into the nail bed itself. Many Australians experience ingrown nails at least once in their life and if left untreated it can allow for the entry of bacteria in the toe resulting in infection.

When it comes to foot pain, there might be some hidden reasons behind why you are experiencing pain when you walk – and it all depends on your individual make-up and lifestyle.

High-impact exercise, arthritis, ill-fitting shoes, diabetes, pregnancy, high arches or being flat-footed are some of the common reasons why people feel discomfort or pain when walking.

Your foot is made up of many small bones, muscle ligaments, tendons and other body tissue, and conditions can be difficult to pinpoint and diagnose.

Our podiatrists take a detailed history, perform a physical assessment, use video walking analysis and take a 3D foot scan to find out what’s causing the pain and create a plan to help make you pain free.

It’s likely you’re not the first person to experience the condition – and it could be a simple and permanent cure. Put the right foot forward and seek a professional diagnosis from a podiatrist for your condition.

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