As we grow older, tired and aching feet can become a common part of life. Most of us can relate to the experience of foot pain, particularly after being on our feet all day, whether at work or out shopping or spending the day outside. Women, in particular, tend to suffer from aching feet as a result of wearing tighter, fashionable shoes or high heels. Whatever the case, seeking treatment for aching feet can help to relieve the discomfort and get you back to everyday activity.
What Causes Tired Or Aching Feet?
Research has shown that having fallen arches, or what is more accurately described as over-pronated feet, causes a person to use more energy in walking. This excess use of energy can result in a much greater degree of fatigue at the end of a day compared to people who don't over-pronate. This theory was proven by a research project reported in the Journal of the American Podiatric Medical Association.
For those without fallen arches, it’s also common for strenuous walking or standing for long periods to have an obvious effect on your feet and may require the same level of treatment for aching feet as those that over-pronate. Other factors that play a part in tired or aching feet include ill-fitting, poorly padded shoes and tight socks or stockings. Reduced blood circulation to the ankles and feet also causes tired, aching feet.
Factors For Tired, Aching Feet
Age - As we age, the natural pad of fat on the soles of the feet begins to thin out and as our feet widen and flatten, this increases the pressure. The skin on our feet also becomes dryer, which can cause cracking under increased pressure. Foot pain in older people may be the first sign of arthritis, diabetes, and circulatory disease and so treatment may require a visit to your doctor.
Gender - Women are at higher risk than men for severe foot pain, often due to high-heeled or tight-fitting shoes. Severe foot pain appears to be a major cause of general disability or low mobility in older women. Pregnant women have an increased risk of aching feet due to weight gain, swelling in their feet and ankles, and the release of hormones that cause ligaments to relax.
Dehydration - Your feet have approximately 250,000 sweat glands and can excrete as much as a quarter of a litre of moisture each day. Therefore, it is important to remember to drink plenty of water throughout the day to maintain your hydration and prevent aching or dry feet.
Treatment For Aching Feet
Determining the best treatment for aching feet depends on the cause of the issue, however, there are a number of solutions you could try. These include:
Lay on the floor and put our feet up on the couch or bed for 15-20 minutes. This will help to clear the lymph nodes within your feet and reducing water retention, which is a common and likely cause for aching feet.
Try soaking your feet in a mixture of tea tree oil and warm water. You can do this in a basin, or a foot spa if you have one. Peppermint oil is also good for the feet and can have a soothing effect. Finish with a good foot cream to help relax your feet and retain their moisture.
Indulge in a regular foot massage. This will help to improve and maintain good circulation to your feet and reduce pain and inflammation.
Do some good foot exercises – this can help to keep them healthy, tone the muscles and strengthen the arches. This can also help to stimulate blood circulation.
Try Orthopaedic Insoles in your shoes. FootActive Orthotics will help to control over-pronation provide support for your arches, producing a treatment for aching feet that tackles one of the most common causes head-on. Women can use FootActive Catwalk styles to enable them to wear fashion or high-heeled shoes.
Helpful Foot Exercises To Treat Aching Feet
Exercise can be an effective treatment for aching feet and there are a number of exercises you can try to increase circulation and relieve the pressure, whilst building up and toning the muscles. These include:
Rising On Your Tiptoes - Stand with your feet parallel to one another and, while holding on to a steady piece of furniture for support, rise slowly up and down on your tiptoes. This exercises the leg muscles and helps to strengthen the foot muscles.
Extension Of The Sole Of The Foot While Sitting Down - Extend and stretch the foot in a straight line with the leg, which will offer tone to your ankles and feet.
Rotate Your Feet While Sitting – Extend your feet one at a time and rotate slowly at the ankle, as if trying to draw the largest circle possible with the big toe. Do this first in one direction, then the other.
Mobilise The Toes - Remain sitting with your feet resting on the floor. Move the toes up and down.
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