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Foot pain isn't always a sign that you've injured yourself. It can be caused by various problems, from improper footwear to poor circulation. The good news is that you can do many things to reduce your risk of foot pain. Here are some surprising causes of foot pain and how to prevent them:

Improper footwear Can Cause Foot PainPerson with heel pain

  • Improper footwear
  • Insufficient arch support
  • Tight, narrow or pointed-toe box (the area where your toes rest)

Running on the balls of your feet

  • Running on the balls of your feet is bad for your knees.
  • Knees are not designed to bear weight, so running on the balls of your feet puts more pressure on them than if you were running on flat ground. This can cause inflammation or even injury in some cases.
  • Running on the balls of your feet is bad for your back.

Running with a straight and upright posture is best for keeping good alignment when running, but if you're constantly landing with bent knees, this will put excess strain on both sides of your lower back (the piriformis muscles). 

If these become tight or inflamed, they can cause pain in other areas, too, as they try to compensate by stretching further than normal, which leads us nicely to our next point.

Standing for long periods in one place

Standing for extended periods can cause foot pain. Your feet will hurt when you stand on hard surfaces, such as concrete or tiles. Standing on your toes for too long can also cause foot pain because it puts pressure on the tendons and muscles in your legs. 

Standing with heels raised above the ground strains these areas, which may also lead to discomfort. If you are standing in one position for too long (such as at work), this could also lead to discomfort or pain in the soles of your feet.

Weak muscles

Your foot, ankle and lower leg muscles are important for supporting the arches of your feet. They also help keep you from falling when you walk or run. 

Weakness in these muscles can cause problems such as flat feet (a condition with very little arch), ankle sprains, shin splints and plantar fasciitis ( inflammation of a ligament in the sole of your foot).

To strengthen these muscles:

  • Wear supportive shoes that fit well and have good arch supports if needed.
  • Stretch before exercising by bending forward at the waist while keeping both feet firmly planted on the floor. Reach toward your toes with one arm while keeping your back straight; repeat with the opposite arm after stretching each side twice daily for three weeks.

Infection Can Cause Foot Pain

Foot infections are caused by a foreign object in the foot (such as a splinter), fungal infection or bacterial infection. Your feet are home to many types of bacteria, fungi and parasites. If you have an open wound or cut on your foot, it can become infected if bacteria enter the wound.


Injury can be caused by a sudden impact, such as slipping on a wet floor and falling. Injury may also result from foot overuse, such as running or playing sports too much. A sudden twist or turn of your ankle can also lead to injury, such as an infection of the skin around it. 

If you have diabetes or poor circulation, foot pain should be taken seriously; it could indicate something more serious than just normal soreness from being on your feet all day! Finally, fractures are another common cause of foot pain--especially if you have osteoporosis.

Poor circulation Cause of Foot Pain

Poor circulation is a common cause of foot pain. If you have diabetes, neuropathy or another condition that affectsPoor Circulation causing foot pain your blood flow, you may experience numbness in the bottom of your feet. Poor circulation can also lead to swelling and other issues that make walking uncomfortable or painful.

Diabetes or neuropathy (nerve damage)

Diabetes is a common cause of nerve damage. When the body doesn't produce enough insulin, it can lead to high blood sugar levels and cause complications like nerve damage. Neuropathy (nerve damage) in the feet can be caused by many conditions other than diabetes, including alcoholism, kidney disease, and some types of cancer. 

Still, it's worth checking out if you experience foot pain or numbness unrelated to an injury. Suppose you have diabetes or another condition that causes nerve damage in your feet. In that case, treatments are available for managing this type of pain: medication and daily foot care are two options that may help reduce discomfort from neuropathy over time.

Foot pain can have lots of causes

Foot pain can have many causes, and it's important to know that your foot pain isn't necessarily a sign of something more serious.

There are many different types of foot pain. Some common examples include:

  • Heel and arch pain (plantar fasciitis)
  • Ball-of-foot pain (metatarsalgia)
  • Toe joint pain (hallux valgus)


We hope you enjoyed our list of the top 8 causes of foot pain. While we know it can be hard to remember everything we've covered here, we hope these tips and tricks will help you identify what may be causing your discomfort so you can get back on your feet quickly! Contact us to learn more.

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