Why Do My Feet Hurt More in the Fall and Winter?

What’s not to love about the arrival of Fall in Houston? We finally get cooler weather and a much-awaited end to mosquito season. However, many individuals experience foot pain and discomfort during the Fall and Winter months. Whether due to chronic conditions that flare up, or acute injuries taking their toll, we’ll cover some of the most common causes of foot and ankle pain, and how to treat them for best results. With Halloween behind us and Thanksgiving just a week away, we’re in the thick of the holiday season. There really is no better time to take care of yourself.

Need more reasons?

  1. This close to the end of the year, you may have already met your insurance deductibles, making treatment low-cost (or no-cost).
  2. Your Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA) funds may be expiring in the next 45 days…don’t lose that money or the tax benefits!
  3. Vacation and holiday time may be just what you need in terms of recovery from podiatric surgery and other procedures

Reasons for Fall Foot Pain

The major reason why foot pain can appear or increase during the fall is cold weather. A drop in temperatures can aggravate existing foot conditions, leading to stiffness, inflammation, and neuropathy. Also, summer footwear gives way to more confined shoes and boots. This footwear can cause discomfort because it tends to be heavier, and women’s styles tend to favor heels. Plus, this shift to closed shoes means more moisture, which can exacerbate issues like toenail fungus, blisters and athlete’s foot. Other problems fall into moderate and severe foot conditions as listed below.

Autumn Foot Problems in Houston

Neuromas

Neuromas are a growth of the nerve tissue between the third and the fourth toes. They are caused by wearing tight footwear and repetitive stress on the foot. It can be treated by using RICE (Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation). You can use anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce the swelling, or use metatarsal pads for relief. If symptoms persist, you can consult your Houston podiatrist.

Achilles tendinitis

This condition affects the achilles tendon, characterized by tightness, pain and inflammation along the back of the heel. It is considered to be an overuse injury, but can be triggered by obesity, the use of high heels or a sudden change in physical activity. It is common among athletes, including those runners participating in the local race season, which is rich in 5Ks, half-marathons, marathons – and even ultra-marathons of 100 miles! You can treat Achilles tendinitis by applying the RICE method, avoiding heels, taking anti-inflammatory drugs, and resting. If the pain persists, you will need to see your foot doctor for treatment.

Bunions

A bunion is a deformity of the joint at the base of the big toe, causing the big toe to angle inwardly against the other toes. This causes the first metatarsal to stick outwards and then rub against the interior surfaces of shoes. This causes inflammation and pain. The condition can be aggravated by wearing shoes that are pointy and/or too tight.Upon an evaluation at Houston Foot and Ankle Care, we can advise you on conservative measures you can take for relief. If necessary, we can also present options for bunion surgery, including minimally invasive procedures.

Ingrown toenails

Toenails can grow into the skin and cause infection. This is caused by trauma or improper nail trimming. You can treat ingrown toenails by soaking the toe in warm water and applying antibiotic cream on it, then dressing it with a band aid. If the pain doesn’t subside in a few days, you can schedule an appointment for ingrown toenail treatment with Dr. Maislos, DPM, FACFAS.

Fallen arches

Fallen arches develop as a result of the primary foot tendons losing elasticity and stretching out. There are many possible causes, including pregnancy, disease, and even as a result of aging. You can treat this condition by wearing supportive athletic shoes and custom orthotics or braces. At your podiatry visit, we can evaluate and recommend the most effective options for keeping you active.

Heel pain

Heel pain occurs when there are small tears in the plantar fascia ligament along the bottom of the foot. The major causes of this condition are foot structure, inflammatory disease, wearing ill-fitting shoes, and overuse. It’s common in occupations that require a lot of standing or walking. It can be treated by using the RICE method, wearing fitting shoes, using custom orthotic shoe inserts. In some cases, surgery is recommended for lasting results, but with the innovative and non-invasive Tenex procedure, recovery is much faster than ever.

If any of these conditions bring back memories of chronic holiday foot problems – or if you are already experiencing pain or discomfort – schedule an appointment with Houston Foot and Ankle Care. We offer same-day or next-day appointments for quick checkups, and you’ll love our friendly and helpful staff. Don’t get caught unprepared for the holiday season… call (713) 541-3199 today to make your appointment.

 

Author
Houston Foot and Ankle

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