Treatment Options For A Foot Neuroma
If you have pain, burning, or tingling in your toes or the ball of your foot, you might have a neuroma. A neuroma is thickened nerve tissue that develops because of chronic nerve compression. Morton's neuroma affects the nerve between your third and fourth toe. It can result from wearing the wrong kind of shoes or from repetitive motion such as jogging. You may feel like there's a rock inside your shoe, and the sensation can be painful and annoying. Here are some treatments that may help.
Shoe inserts that support your arch and pad the ball of your foot may help relieve pain and make walking more comfortable. Consider consulting a podiatrist, so you can get custom inserts that relieve compression on the nerve in your foot. While orthotics can be very helpful when you have a neuroma, it is risky to buy them from a drugstore without professional advice. If you don't buy the appropriate shoe insert, you will not get relief from pain, and you could even make your condition worse by throwing your foot out of alignment.
Wearing shoes with narrow, tight toes can contribute to the development of a neuroma. As part of your treatment and to prevent worsening of the condition, you should choose shoes that have low heels and plenty of toe room. Sandals may be a good option too, as long as they have good arch support. You should also avoid wearing tight socks that constrict your toes.
Your neuroma may only bother you when you walk. On the other hand, the pain may persist even at rest because your nerve is being constantly irritated. Ice helps reduce inflammation and soothe the irritated nerve. Rest your foot on an ice pack, or roll a large ice cube over the ball of your foot.
Your podiatrist may recommend anti-inflammatory medications if ice is not effective. Over-the-counter pills may be all you need for occasional relief. But when your pain interferes with your ability to work, you need more aggressive treatments. In that case, your podiatrist may administer steroid injections directly into your foot. These corticosteroid injections can reduce swelling and pain quickly, although the effects gradually wear off over time.
You don't want to ignore the symptoms of a neuroma because the condition will probably get worse if you don't stop irritating the nerve. If your condition becomes severe, surgery may be the only way to get relief. Surgery is usually only necessary when permanent foot damage has occurred that causes the structures of your foot to compress the nerve. Decompression surgery cuts tissues to release pressure on the nerve. The doctor may need to remove the nerve instead, and this may leave you with numbness in your toes.
Early treatment is important because at that stage your neuroma may be treatable by simply changing your shoes. Although foot pain is common and easy to ignore, you should consult your podiatrist when you have pain that doesn't go away. Getting a proper diagnosis is the first step to ensuring you get the best treatment for your condition. For more information, contact a professional like those at the Advanced Foot Clinic.