Nearly 1 in 5 adults over 18 years of age and 1 in 3 people over the age of 65 experience foot pain.
Foot pain can have a significant impact on your quality of life. Foot pain is associated with decreased ability to undertake activities of daily living, problems with balance and gait, and an increased risk of falls. Not only physically debilitating, foot pain can impact social activities and have flow on effects upon your mental health.
Foot pain can manifest in any number of ways from very sharp to constantly aching. Heel pain first thing in the morning that eases up as you walk around could be plantar fasciitis. Pain under the ball of your foot, could be a bunion or metatarsalgia just to mention a few possibilities. There are also many non-musculoskeletal reasons for foot pain.
Sprains are one of the most common causes of ankle pain. Women are more prone than men and adolescents are the most likely age group to suffer from ankle sprain. This is because they tend to do activities in which ankle sprains, and probably a lot of other sprains and strains, are much more likely. Ankles can also become sore if they are compensating for a foot that is in pain or is restricted in some way.
The role of osteopaths in foot pain is to first determine if the cause of your foot pain is musculoskeletal in origin. If not, we can refer you to the appropriate professionals for help. Osteopathic treatment for ankle and foot pain focuses on releasing soft tissue and mobilising the many joints within your foot and ankle. Your osteopath will also look at the rest of your leg mechanics and lower back and pelvic movement to balance any compensating you may have been doing if you have been limping on a sore foot or ankle.
Your acupuncturist has a similar role in first determining if your foot or ankle pain is something they can treat, Diagnosis is then made using medical and traditional Chinese medical assessment tools. Treatment may include needling appropriate acupuncture points and/or herbal medicine prescription, also aimed at improving the overall function of your whole body.