The small size of these complex structures, in relation to the rest of the body, and the fact that they are the supportive foundation of the entire body, places an enormous burden upon them. Every step we take and the ensuing pounding places an additional amount of weight, and throughout the day can amount to many tons of weight that the feet are subjected too. This constant pounding, usually aggravated by improper footwear, leaves no doubt as to why most individuals will suffer some form of pain in either one or both feet.
Pains in the feet usually occur in three different areas of the foot. The front or ball of the foot (metatarsals), the middle (arch) and the back (heel). When the front of the foot or feet are affected and the pain is in the ball of the foot, it generally is diagnosed as metatarsalgia. In metatarsalgia, the pain can also intrude on the toes. There can also be conditions that affect one or more toes that are not related to metatarsalgia and of course this must be diagnosed.
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Pain in the mid foot or feet are found in most instances to be caused by a flattened transverse arch. This flattening is caused by an overstretching of the transverse ligament leading to the breaking down of the arch. This is referred to as flat feet (pes planus). Conversely, the exact opposite will be an unusually high arch. That in of itself places a great deal of stress on the biomechanics of the feet, putting more pressure on the metatarsals and heel.