Do You Have Arthritis In Your Feet Worry Not
If you suffer from arthritis in your feet, we want to hear about it. We strongly believe that no one should live their life in discomfort. Our licensed chiropodists are trained to help you manage your foot pain. Our downtown Toronto foot clinic is open 6 days a week! Call us to ask about how you can achieve your goal of happy and healthy feet!
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Are There Any Complications
Osteoarthritis can sometimes cause other problems for your feet, which may get worse if the condition isnt treated.
If osteoarthritis in the feet is left untreated, cartilage can wear away completely. This might cause the bones of your foot to join together. When this happens in the big toe, its known as hallux rigidus.
This can make it more difficult to move your big toe and you may have trouble walking. Sometimes bony growths may appear on the top of your toe.
Hallux rigidus and osteoarthritis in your big toe can cause this toe to lean towards your other toes. When this happens, its called a bunion or hallux valgus.
A bony lump can then form on the side of your big toe. Sometimes you might have red or swollen skin over it, and it can also cause hard skin. You might feel unsteady while standing and walking.
Corns and calluses
Corns and calluses can form on your feet in areas where theyre exposed to pressure, or the skin is repeatedly rubbed. This might be because of uncomfortable shoes. Corns are small, hard lumps of skin, and calluses are patches of thicker skin that feel rough.
Corns and calluses can sometimes be caused by other problems with your feet, such as bunions.
What Is Toe Arthritis
Toe arthritis is caused by inflammation of the toe joint. The disease most often attacks the big toe, but the others may be affected as well.
Past injuries or traumas, such as a broken or sprained toe, can cause arthritis down the road. Osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and gout may also be to blame.
Risk factors include:
- being overweight
- a family history of arthritis
Women who wear tight, high-heeled shoes for much of their lives may also be at risk for toe arthritis.
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Make Sure The Shape Of Your Shoes Matches The Shape Of Your Feet
That may mean a roomy toe box to accommodate bunions or hammertoes, or an extra-wide shoe to reduce pressure on painful spots. Sturdy, supportive shoes are crucial to ease arthritis foot pain. Custom orthotics or a good over-the-counter shoe insert can provide even more comfort and extra support, adds Dr. Sachs. These inserts can help rebalance the foot, give your arch more support, and help cushion the ball of your foot. Talk to your doctor to determine the best footwear for you. Here are more tips for picking the right shoes when you have arthritis.
Is It Ra Or Osteoarthritis
When you first notice foot pain, you may wonder if it’s osteoarthritis . OA is also known as wear-and-tear arthritis, and it is more common than rheumatoid arthritis.
There is no clear-cut way to tell if you have OA or RA without a medical diagnosis. But OA and RA do have some key differences.
Usually affects both feet at once
Morning stiffness generally lasts longer than half an hour
Most often affects only one foot
Stiffness tends to be easier to relieve in the morning, often getting better in less than half an hour or with a few minutes of stretching
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Use Topical Medications For Arthritis In The Feet
Some people find that topical medications provide relief from foot arthritis pain, Frisch says. Look for topicals with capsaicin, an ingredient found in chile peppers thats believed to decrease the amount of substance P, which transmits pain in the body. Capsaicin is sold over the counter as a cream, ointment, stick, gel, lotion, liquid, or pad and under different brand names, such as Icy Hot and Zostrix.
When Foot Pain May Mean Arthritis
Learn about the various causes of foot pain, including different kinds of arthritis.
Many forms of arthritis and related conditions affect the joints of the foot as well as the skin and toenails. Here are some possible diseases that may cause problems for feet, toes and heels.
Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis. Also known as wear and tear arthritis, OA is a chronic condition caused by the breakdown of the cartilage, which cushions the ends of the bones where they meet to form joints. This breakdown causes the bones to rub together, causing stiffness, pain and loss of joint movement. In the foot, OA most commonly affects the big toe, but it can affect the ankle joints and joints of the heel bone, inner and outer mid-foot. Aging and obesity make OA more likely in the feet.
Juvenile arthritis is the term used to describe the joint diseases that affect children 16 years and younger. There are different types of JA that can cause pain and swelling in several joints, including ones in the feet.
Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease that causes the body’s immune system to mistakenly attack healthy tissues, including the joints. The wrist and small joints of the feet are most commonly affected by lupus. In some cases, the toes can also turn blue from sensitivity to cold, a symptom of Raynauds phenomenon.
Getting a Proper Diagnosis
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Consider Surgery For Arthritis In The Feet
Foot surgery can be helpful, but its not a cure-all, Frisch says. Sometimes problems can recur despite surgery, he explains. Surgery should always be a last resort when your pain is limiting your lifestyle and choice of activities. The right procedure for you depends on the type of arthritis you have, where it is located, and the impact it has on your joints.
There are two broad categories for foot surgery: joint fusions and joint replacements, Frisch says. If the problem is too much movement, you fuse it, and if theres not enough, you try to mobilize it.
Lifestyle Changes For Foot Arthritis
A few changes to your daily life can help you feel better and may keep your arthritis from getting worse.
- If a certain activity triggers a flare-up of symptoms, try to keep it to a minimum.
- Instead of high-impact exercises like jogging, do low-impact ones like swimming or cycling.
- Keep a healthy weight so your joints arenât under as much stress.
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases : “What Is Osteoarthritis?” and “Hand Out on Health: Osteoarthritis.”
National Institute on Aging: “Age Page: Arthritis Advice.”
American Podiatric Medical Association: âArthritis.â
American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons: âArthritis of the Foot and Ankle.â
Arthritis Foundation: âWhen Foot Pain May Mean Arthritis,â âPsoriatic Arthritis.â
Mayo Clinic: âArthritis.â
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Circulation And Nerve Problems In The Lower Limb:
Some people with RA can experience decreased blood supply to feet and legs associated with atherosclerosis which can lead to cramp-like pains in your calf, thigh or buttock muscles when walking and other circulation related disorders such as Raynauds phenomena where the small blood vessels in the skin of the hands and feet shut down in response to changes in temperature leading to the following colour changes: toes/fingers go white, then blue and then red. These colour changes may also be accompanied by a tingling sensation in the affected areas. In rare cases people with RA can develop a skin rash, that may ulcerate, known as vasculitis an inflammation of the blood vessels. This is usually associated with long term disease, and the risks of it occurring are increased by smoking.Some people may experience problems with the nerve supply to their feet known as Peripheral Neuropathy . This may mean that they cannot feel pain or other sensations such as temperature and pressure, or they may experience pins and needles in certain parts of their feet as a result of a trapped nerve.The above are types of problems that are less common, and hopefully, you may never experience them, but you should be aware of the symptoms if they arise and inform your rheumatology Health Care Practitioner responsible for monitoring your rheumatoid arthritis.
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What Is Psoriatic Arthritis
Psoriatic arthritis is an inflammatory disease that causes pain and swelling in the joints. Most people with the disease also have psoriasis, a skin condition that causes red, scaly, inflamed rashes. Both psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis are conditions that occur when your bodys immune system attacks its own tissues.
People dealing with psoriatic arthritis may experience lots of problems below the ankles including foot pain, heel pain, swelling and toenail changes.
Rest Through Ra Flares
They can come out of nowhere, says Dr. Rouse. His advice: Rest as much as possible to let the inflammatory process dissipate before becoming active again. Ice or other forms of cold therapy can also help reduce swelling and pain during flare of RA. Here are more tips to help handle arthritis flare-ups.
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Best Shoes For Arthritis In Feet
Shoes for arthritis are another common way to relieve pain. As EveryDay Health explains:
Wearing comfortable, supportive shoes is key. Shoes should be wide enough so that they dont press on any bunions or calluses. Skip the high heels because they put more pressure on the balls of your feet. Arch support is essential to stabilize joints that are moving more than they should, which can happen with arthritis, explains Frisch. The toning athletic shoes that are popular these days can be a good choice for foot health.
The Arthritis Foundation has given their Ease of Use Commendation to the Gravity Defyer brand. These arthritis shoes help take some of the pressure off your foot and are available in multiple widths, depending on your foot.
It doesnt stop at the shoes. Talk to your doctor about arthritis compression socks that can also help increase circulation and reduce pain. You can also use orthotics, such as pads in your shoes, to help relieve pressure from growths.
What Causes Toe Arthritis
Everything from past injuries , osteoarthritis, gout, or rheumatoid arthritis can lead to toe arthritis.
Common forms of toe arthritis are rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. Lets more closely examine these and other damaging types.
Rheumatoid arthritis is often hereditary and can affect the entire body. This type of arthritis causes the foot arches to collapse and result in stiffness and swelling in the foot. As a result, the toes are generally forced into an uncomfortable, constricted position. Its the most common type of inflammatory arthritis and people who have it will often notice symptoms in the feet and toes.
Osteoarthritis can affect any of the joints in the foot, but it commonly causes arthritis in the big toe at the metatarsophalangeal, or MTP joint. The MTP joint is located at the bottom of the big toe. Toe arthritis can lead to the erosion of cartilage and cause stiffness and pain in the toe. When OA occurs in toes, its usually referred to as hallux rigidus.
Psoriatic arthritis: Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease that affects the skin. In some cases, it can move to the joints where it can affect the toes. Sometimes, psoriasis affects the joints before it spreads to the skin, but that is rather uncommon. If you believe you have psoriatic arthritis, early diagnosis is very important in stopping potential joint damage.
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How Will It Affect Me
Osteoarthritis can affect people in different ways, but the most common symptoms of osteoarthritis are:
- pain and swelling in the affected joints
- stiffness, especially if you havent moved for a while
- joints looking bigger than normal.
Some people with osteoarthritis can hear grating or crunching noises when moving their feet and ankles. You may also feel unsteady on your feet.
You may have an achy feeling in your feet, especially if youve been particularly active or worn high heels. Some people also get pain in their feet at night.
In the ankle, osteoarthritis could cause your ligaments to become weaker, which could put more strain on the cartilage. You might also find the muscles around your ankle become weaker over time, and it may feel painful to walk or put weight on your ankle.
The repair process in osteoarthritis can cause spurs to form on the edge of your bones. These are known as osteophytes and change the shape of your joint. Sometimes bone and cartilage can break away and float inside the joint, which could cause more pain and swelling.
If you think you might have osteoarthritis of the foot or ankle, its important to visit your GP, so they can diagnose you and start treatment as soon as possible. If youve been diagnosed with osteoarthritis of the foot or ankle, its important to know that your symptoms probably wont get worse, and they may even improve.
Arthritis In Feet: Causes Symptoms And Treatment
Arthritis of the foot is inflammation and swelling of the synovium, the soft tissue and lining of the joints in the foot. An increase in the fluid within the joints is usually present as well. One or both feet may be affected.
This condition can develop at any age, but is most common in people over the age of 50. Arthritis currently affects almost half of the adult population in the United States, and its prevalence is increasing:
Although arthritis is a well-known cause of joint pain, arthritis in the foot or feet may not cause symptoms. On the other hand, some people with arthritis in the feet become disabled and unable to walk.
Because the feet bear the weight of the body, it is impossible for arthritis sufferers to avoid the foot pain that accompanies load-bearing, and for this reason the feet seem more susceptible to arthritis than other parts of the body.
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Heres To Many More Years Of Foot Care
At Feet First Clinic, were always excited to welcome new clients! After a successful 12 years of treating our amazing patients, were ready to continue offering only the best foot care services and products. Give us a call to ask our friendly staff any questions you may have! Our Toronto foot specialists are ready to help!
Call us at 416-769-3338 or Book Your Assessment Today!
Skin Issues With Ra In The Feet
Changes in your foot shape can result in pressure spreading out unevenly across your foot as you walk. Excess pressure can result in skin conditions:
- Bunions are thick, bony bumps that develop in the joint at the base of your big toe or fifth toe.
- Corns are thick, hardened skin patches that may be larger and less sensitive than the rest of your foot skin.
If theyre not treated, both bunions and corns can develop into ulcers. These are open sores that result from skin breaking down due to a lack of circulation or tissue damage in the foot. Ulcers can become infected and cause further foot pain and damage.
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Medical Treatment For Foot & Ankle Arthritis
If you are diagnosed with arthritis in the foot or ankle, NYU Langone doctors often recommend a combination of treatments to lessen discomfort and prevent further joint damage. These may include modifying activities that put stress on the affected joints, using orthotic inserts and braces, taking medication, or receiving corticosteroid injections that provide longer-term pain relief. People diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis may require medications to control the bodys immune response, in addition to some of the following therapies.
Skin And Nail Problems:
Shape changes in the front of the foot and the toes can create pressure sites that develop corns and calluses . These may develop into areas of ulceration if not treated appropriately, and so it is advisable to request podiatry guidance if hard skin or corns are present on your feet. Professional guidance should always be sought with regard to self-treatment of hard skin and corns you are advised not to use pedicure blades, corn plasters and paints on these areas. The reason for not using these is that they can remove good skin and cause breaks in the skin which bacteria can then invade and cause a serious infection.The photograph below shows a hard corn and callus on the ball of the foot.
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Can I Prevent My Arthritis From Getting Worse
It is important that you take an active role in managing your arthritis. Seek treatment for arthritis as early as possible to help control pain, reduce damage to joints, and avoid surgery.
Maintaining a proper diet and healthy lifestyle is also helpful. Low-impact exercises such as cycling and swimming can improve your physical fitness while also limiting stress on your joints. High-impact activities like running may accelerate damage to your midfoot. Talk to your doctor before starting any activity or lifestyle change to make sure it is appropriate for you.
Types Of Arthritis That Affect Our Feet
Arthritis is a medical condition that affects our joints, causing pain, swelling and stiffness. One of the most common risk factors is age. That said, while arthritis mainly affects people over the age of 40, it can develop at any age. Here at Feet First Clinic, our chiropodists regularly treat patients who have arthritis in their feet. Likewise, foot-care experts note that 5 types of arthritis can target our feet. Today, well go over those with you, as well as the signs and symptoms of each type. Well also give you a list of treatment options that have been known to help patients live a normal, healthy life.
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