Foot and ankle injuries aren’t always caused by a single incident. While a sudden twist of the ankle or slip on an icy sidewalk can certainly damage the bones and ligaments in the feet, the majority of foot injuries involve some level of overuse. Repeated standing, jumping, or running can damage the foot bones and ankle joint, causing injuries to develop slowly over time.
Common Overuse Injuries and How to Avoid Them
While athletes are most likely to suffer overuse injuries, they can happen to anyone who attempts to significantly increase their physical activity. Improper footwear, inadequate rest, and sticking to a rigorous running schedule can all lead to an overuse injury or make a painful condition worse.
If your body can’t keep up with the demands of your workout schedule, you may suffer:
- Stress fractures. Stress fractures are small cracks in a bone caused by excessive or repeated pressure. A good pair of athletic shoes can prevent these injuries, especially shoes that provide proper cushioning and arch support.
- Heel pain. The repetitive motion of the foot striking the ground can cause plantar fasciitis and inflammation in the band of tissue on the bottom of the foot. Custom orthotics and physical therapy can help relieve plantar fasciitis pain.
- Tendinitis. Running, playing sports, or other physical activity can lead to inflammation of the tendons and ligaments if the body does not have enough time to heal between workouts. Inflammation in the tendon at the back of the heel (Achilles tendonitis) may require a podiatrist’s help if the pain does not improve with rest.
If you are struggling with a foot injury, the foot and ankle specialists at Greater Washington Advanced Podiatry are here to help. We offer free initial consultations and create a customized treatment plan to get you back on your feet as soon as possible. Simply fill out our online contact form or call us at (301) 515-FEET to set up your first visit.