Arch and Ball of the Foot Conditions

Common Pain Culprits

Your feet are made up of many parts. Each section of the foot has multiple roles in keeping you upright and moving forward. Two important areas for both standing still and pushing off to walk or run are the ball of your foot and your arch. They support the body’s weight and offer a sturdy base for moving effectively. When something goes wrong with them, it’s not only uncomfortable, but activity and even just wearing shoes can become painful. Those problems can limit you and interrupt your life. Fortunately, Dr. Gerald Mauriello regularly works with many conditions of the arch and ball of the foot.

Pain in the Arch

  • Over-Pronation – Often related to flatfoot, this is a common source of arch pain. When the arch has fallen, or naturally sits too low, an over-rotation of the ankle often occurs.  The result is the uneven distribution of weight across the foot. This can put pressure on other parts of the foot and destabilize the ankle.
  • Plantar Fibroma – The large tendon along the bottom of the foot, called the plantar fascia, can develop benign nodules called fibromas. Though only small masses, they can press into the other tissues of the foot when you walk or stand, causing pain. These develop slowly over time.

Discomfort in the Ball of the Foot

  • Capsulitis—Capsulitis is inflammation of the ligaments that attach a toe to its metatarsal bone. Though most common in the second toe, other ones can develop it as well. This disorder is caused by excess pressure on the ball of the foot and results in discomfort in that area, especially when walking.
  • Metatarsalgia—This condition exists when the ends of the metatarsal bones become inflamed and irritated. This is generally an overuse or impact injury, so athletes and other active people are particularly vulnerable. It develops as a pain in the ball of the foot over several weeks.
  • Sesamoiditis—You have two small bones called sesamoids embedded in the tendon that attaches your big toe to its metatarsal. Through injury or overuse, the tendon around the sesamoids can become irritated, making it uncomfortable to walk or push off the ball of the foot.

Each of these painful conditions and many others make it harder for you to walk and maintain stability in your feet. Without treatment, you risk increasing pain and compounding problems—many times, weakness or issues in one area of the foot puts stress on another part that results in additional conditions. The good news is that many conservative treatments to eliminate pain—and prevent it in the future—are available. Prescription orthotics support, stabilize, and cushion different areas of your feet. Good shoes also make a difference, which is why we have an exceptional shoe store to meet your individual foot needs. Don’t wait until you can barely walk to seek help for your arch and ball of the foot pain. Contact Dr. Geral Mauriello in Belvidere or Hackettstown, New Jersey for an appointment or more information by visiting the contact page online or by calling (908) 475-8750.