How Your Podiatrist Can Help Your Arthritic Foot Pain
posted: Nov. 30, 2020.
Has arthritis limited the range of motion in your foot or ankle? Are you concerned the pain in your forefoot will increase and limit your active lifestyle? At Total Foot and Ankle of Tampa Bay, our team of four expert podiatrists in Wesley Chapel, Zephyrhills, Sun City Center, and Riverview, FL, can help you manage your arthritis, reducing your most difficult symptoms.
What is arthritis?
Arthritis involves inflammation of the joints throughout the body. Particularly noticeable in complex structures such as the shoulder, hand, neck, and foot, this chronic condition originates in:
- Traumatic or repetitive motion (wear and tear) injury
- Inflammatory and/or autoimmune diseases, such as lupus and colitis
- Heredity (arthritis runs in families)
Common types include Rheumatoid, Osteoarthritis, Gout, and Psoriatic. All impact quality of life and can even lead to disability. The American Podiatric Medical Association reports arthritis affects 40 million people in the United States, and advancing age does contribute to its development and severity.
Arthritis in your feet
Did you know that your foot has 33 joints and all of them may become arthritic? To manage arthritis in your foot and/or ankle, you first must realize the seriousness of your symptoms and then report them to your podiatrist. Your foot doctor will review your symptoms, examine your feet, and take X-rays or other types of imaging if needed.
Be sure to tell your podiatrist if your feet:
- Appear red or feel hot
- Are stiff when you get out of bed in the morning
- Have a limited range of motion
- Have skin rashes or unusual bumps or discolorations
- Feel painful, tender, or persistently sore
With a confirmed diagnosis of arthritis, your podiatrist will work with you on a care plan to reduce your symptoms and maintain the form and mobility of your feet and ankles.
While surgery, including joint replacement procedures, is a treatment option, most arthritis of the foot responds to simpler interventions such as:
- Pain medications, such as ibuprofen and aspirin
- Injections of corticosteroids to reduce inflammation
- Physical therapy and exercise to increase mobility and range of motion
- Management of foot function with quality footwear and customized shoe orthotics (inserts) which protect, cushion, and correct problems with gait
- Weight reduction and management
Get the help you need
Don't suffer from lingering symptoms of arthritis. Let the professional team at Total Foot and Ankle of Tampa Bay work with you to provide the relief you deserve. We have four locations to serve you. Please contact us for an informative consultation. For the Zephyr Hills and Wesley Chapel locations, phone (813) 788-3600, and for Sun City Center and Apollo Beach/Riverview, call (813) 633-5900.