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Untreated Foot & Ankle Problems Cause Even More Problems

it band syndrome

By Misha Gilani, DPT

Foot and ankle conditions are very common for every age group. We treat general pain and injuries in this part of the body often at Loudoun Sports Therapy because even if it’s just general discomfort, foot and ankle conditions cause a lot of problems with daily, functional activities. The most frequent complaint we see in the clinic is pain at the ankle joint that can radiate up into the leg or down into the heel. This symptom often causes the patient to have difficulty walking or standing for a prolonged period of time. It can also mean they have trouble going from a seated position to a standing one without pain. Even taking just a few steps can be painful due to muscle tightness and joint stiffness.

If foot pain is not taken care of, it can cause dysfunctions up the chain in your knee, hip and even your back. That’s because to compensate for this pain in your foot and ankle, you have an abnormal gait ore walking pattern and the movements you use to perform a normal activity are altered to try and avoid that pain in your foot or ankle. This ‘trickle down’ effect is why it’s so important to see a physical therapist to learn what is causing your pain or dysfunction and so you can understand the correct way to treat your symptoms.

So what causes foot and ankle problems? Foot and ankle pain can stem from a number of factors. Some common ones include:

  • Poor footwear
  • Weakness in the intrinsic foot muscles
  • Poor foot anatomy such has a flat foot or high arches
  • Chronic issues with lower back, hip or the knee that causes pain down into the foot and ankle

Physical therapy is a very effective treatment method to relieve foot and ankle pain. Physical therapy helps decrease pain and inflammation, improve joint mobility, decrease muscle tightness and improve motor control of the ankle’s stabilizing muscles. Physical therapy will help improve strength and stability of the ankle and foot joint to restore your ability to get back to your normal lifestyle.

At Loudoun Sports Therapy Center, our therapists will fully evaluate your foot and ankle and associated symptoms and help restore your full function. Don’t ignore your pain when you’ve been dealing with it for days, weeks or even years.

CLICK HERE for more information on some causes of ankle injuries.