If your feet hurt when driving, you may have a condition known as driver’s foot. Driver’s foot occurs when you have repetitive stress on your feet. It can be the result of driving for long periods of time or being stuck in traffic with your foot pressed on the brake pedal of your car. Pain from driver’s foot can happen in various areas of the feet and can be treated using conservative methods.
Common Symptoms of Driver’s Foot
Driver’s foot is a common condition caused by overuse. It can produce symptoms such as:
- Foot cramping. Cramping in the feet can happen when you are driving since you are constantly pushing down on the pedals of the car.
- Pain in the heel of the foot. Heel pain and bruising can be the result of sitting with your feet resting on the floor of the car. It can be similar to the pain that results from standing on your feet for long periods of time.
- Pain in the ball of the foot. Pain can be present in the ball of the foot near the joint of the big toe due to inflammation.
- Pain across the top of the foot. If you are forced to sit in traffic and keep your foot on the brake for a long amount of time, pain can occur across the top of the foot. This can also happen if you have to push down on the pedals with more force than usual.
Treating Foot Pain From Driving
If you have pain when driving, there are various treatments that can be used to eliminate the problem. Often taking a break and walking around can reduce the pain. In addition, you can take off your shoes and flex your feet and ankles. Sometimes taking a rest and stretching your feet may be all you need to reduce the pain so you can get back out on the road.
Some other options to try include:
- Change your footwear. If you wear high heels or shoes with no support such as flip flops while driving, change your footwear to a more comfortable option.
- Custom orthotics. If you need more arch support when driving, consider using custom orthotics from your podiatrist inside of your shoes to add comfort and take pressure off certain areas of your feet.
- Adjust your seat position. The position of your seat can contribute to foot pain due to the placement of your feet. If you drive with your seat close to the pedals, it can cause stress on your ankle joints. If your seat is not high enough, you can put pressure on the tendons of your feet and ankles as well as on the back of the heel.
- Ice. After a long day of driving, ice your feet to reduce swelling and inflammation. You can keep your feet elevated while icing to help as well.
- Massage. A foot massage after driving can help loosen up foot muscles that may be tight due to driving.
When to Contact a Podiatrist
If you are experiencing pain when driving that does not respond to conservative treatments, contact a Greater Washington Podiatry for an evaluation. We can examine your feet and determine the cause of your pain as well as rule out other possible causes for the problem. To set up an appointment, fill out our contact form online or call our office at (301) 515-FEET.