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Are you experiencing an ache in the ball of your foot when involved in weight-bearing activities? Do you feel a sharp pain even when you’re giving your feet a rest?

Metatarsalgia is a broad diagnosis that includes inflammation of the structures within the ball of the foot, including the nerves, tendons, ligaments, bone and joint. It often hurts to push off with your toes or stand on your toes. It is usually tender when squeezed or pushed on, though the area will not show any swelling or changes in color.

It is important to see your podiatrist to rule out other possible conditions such as a neuroma, tendonitis, fat pad atrophy, arthritis or a bone fracture.

How Footwear Can Help

A properly fitting pair of shoes should allow the toe to bend properly. A shoe insert that reduces motion and has gels or pads at the ball of the foot typically reduces the symptoms of metatarsalgia. If you continue to experience pain in the ball of your foot, see a podiatrist.