Seventy-seven percent of American suffer from some kind of foot pain, and it’s definitely no fun. Discomfort or pain can range from nuisance to downright debilitating.
Foot pain can be caused by a number of factors, including ill-fitting or uncomfortable shoes, inflammation, bad posture and more, according to WebMD. It can occur in the arch, ball, heel, outer edge or toes—or even all over.
But just because you experience foot pain doesn’t mean you’re doomed to experience it forever. In addition to wearing appropriate shoes and working on proper walking form, there are a number of other ways to alleviate foot pain without having to spend a lot of money or load up on the meds. Here are four ways you can relieve foot pain in the comfort of your own home by doing some soothing stretches.
1. Heel Pain Stretch
If you have a lot of heel pain, you may have plantar fasciitis. When the ligament that connects your heel bone to your toes gets weak, swollen and inflamed, it causes pain in your heel or the bottom of your foot when you stand or walk. It’s best to give your feet a rest, ice them and take an over-the-counter pain reliever if you have a lot of swelling, and you can also do some helpful stretches several times a day. This stretch can help soothe pain from plantar fasciitis:
2. Bunion Stretch
Bunions are those bony bumps that form in some people on the joint at the base of the big toe. They are often hereditary, but can also occur from wearing too tight or narrow shoes. This can cause swelling, redness or soreness around your big toe joint as well as corns and calluses. Bunion pain can be alleviated with some light stretching and realignment. Applying capsaicin-based cream also helps.
3. Stretches To Alleviate Soreness After A Long Day Of Standing
If you’re on your feet all day, you might have pain or soreness on all parts of your feet. Icing your feet will help to reduce inflammation, and it’s also a good idea to spend some time elevating your feet to decrease swelling. You will also want to massage your feet and stretch out those tight muscles. See below for a simple foot pain relief exercise:
4. Arch Pain Stretch
In most cases, arch pain develops from overuse, unsupportive shoes, weight gain or acute injury. Fortunately, a tennis ball massage is an easy way to relieve the pain in the comfort of your own home. This simple massage can help soothe discomfort and tension in your feet, and it can also help improve flexibility and balance, which can help prevent pain down the line.