Arthritis is a broad title that refers to a group of more than 100 diseases that involve severe inflammation of the joints. Inflammation in your body caused by arthritis leads to stiffness, swelling and constant pain. When you have arthritis in your foot, the symptoms can range from a dull ache to more severe signs that require specialized care.
Many senior citizens begin experiencing symptoms associated with arthritis as they get older. As the cartilage and soft tissues in your body begin to break down, you become more susceptible to pain and inflammation. Arthritis can make your feet tender to the touch and interfere with your ability to move or walk. Arthritis in the feet typically affects the joints where your ankle and shin meet, your toes, and the joints in your foot.
The best way to manage arthritis pain is to seek orthopedic physiotherapy treatment right away. However, a lot of people may be dealing with arthritis pain without realizing it. Here are the common symptoms that may indicate the presence or development of arthritis.
1. Consistent Pain
If you consistently experience pain in your feet, you may be dealing with arthritis. Pain of any kind isn’t normal and should be examined as soon as you notice it happening regularly. Foot pain related to arthritis can range from pain in a single toe to pain that radiates throughout your entire foot.
Arthritis pain is often described as a deep, achy sensation that gets worse when you try and move. Pain in your feet is important to address before it becomes debilitating. If your pain prevents you from enjoying your normal activities, it’s important to ask your doctor about arthritis management.
2. Stiff Feeling
One of the most debilitating aspects of arthritis is the deterioration of the cartilage between your joints. Without this cartilage, your joints will feel stiff and painful. Arthritis also eats away at the tissues and synovial fluid in your body, which can contribute to stiffness and pain in your feet. The deterioration of cartilage in your body will make it difficult to move as each movement will be significantly painful.
3. Random Clicking
Random clicking and popping noises are also potential signs of arthritis developing in your feet. These clicks and pops may not be painful, but they create a disturbing sound that lets you know something in your body is not right. Because arthritis deteriorates cartilage in your body, you may also hear a grinding noise in your toes or ankle.
Lack of cartilage causes your bones to rub together, which creates noise and pain. Clicking and popping noises are popular with various types of inflammatory arthritis. Clicking isn’t necessarily harmful, but it’s a symptom that’s worth bringing up with your doctor.
4. Swelling Without Injury
Random swelling without any obvious cause is another potential symptom of arthritis. All variations of arthritis cause an increase in inflammation in your joints. Your toes and foot might turn red and feel warm to the touch when swelling is present.
Many people notice swelling associated with arthritis after they spend long periods without moving their bodies. If you notice your feet are swollen in the morning, it’s worth getting evaluated for arthritis. Swollen feet make it difficult to wear your regular shoes and contribute to the amount of pain you experience daily.
5. Stiff Achilles
Stiffness in your Achilles tendon is another potential sign of arthritis in your feet. Inflammation in this area can be painful and lead to significant injury if you’re not careful.
Gentle stretching of your hamstring and Achilles can help relieve stiffness and inflammation in your feet. Wiggling your toes is also an effective movement to relieve stiffness in your Achilles. When stretching, make sure you execute each movement gently to prevent hurting yourself.
6. Lack of Balance
Another sign of arthritis developing in your feet is a lack of balance. Between the swelling, inflammation, and pain, maintaining your balance quickly becomes a difficult task. Investing in a cane or shoe inserts can relieve pressure off your feet and increase your stability.
People who suffer from arthritis have also managed their symptoms by using athletic tape to tie their toes together. The compression can help with the inflammation. If you have trouble maintaining your balance or feel pain while standing, it’s worth speaking to your doctor about the potential of having arthritis in your feet.
7. Radiating Heat
Heat radiating from your foot is one of the most common symptoms when you have arthritis in your foot. Inflammation in your joints leads to redness and warmth radiating from your body due to increased activity from the inflammation. Warm joints are usually tender to the touch, which is a sign you should speak with your doctor.
Corticosteroid creams can help reduce inflammation and provide you with relief during pain flare-ups. These creams are quite useful if you notice your symptoms flaring up after being active or standing for long periods.