How to ease arthritis pain in feet

A woman massages her painful feet tenderly.

If you have arthritic or similarly painful feet, you’ll know how much of a distraction the discomfort can be when you’re trying to relax. In this article, we’ll be looking at various ways you can relieve aching feet, as well as what you can do to avoid exacerbating arthritis pain in your everyday life.

How to ease the pain of arthritis in your feet

There are dozens of different methods that people swear by to ease foot pain, and the six we’ve listed below are our favourites. As always, we recommend that you take the advice of your doctor or podiatrist and make sure to consult your healthcare provider if something doesn’t feel right.

So, what can you do to help ease arthritis pain in your feet?

Wear supportive footwear

The first step to easing recurring foot pain is to check the fit of your shoes. It’s surprisingly common for people to be wearing shoes that aren’t quite the right size – particularly if their ideal size would be wide-fitting. Taking the time to properly measure your feet could mean that your next pair of shoes is all the more comfortable – leaving your feet feeling better.

Fit isn’t the only consideration when it comes to choosing the right shoes for you. It’s also important to pick a pair of shoes that gives a good level of comfort and support. Ultra-comfortable shoes often incorporate gel pads and memory foam insoles that provide a superior level of cushioning to reduce impact as you walk. This can help to keep your feet pain-free for longer, especially if you’re regularly on your feet for long periods of time.

Take some gentle exercise

While it might be the last thing you feel like doing when your feet are in pain, gently exercising can help to relieve stiffness and fatigue in your feet, which can be major contributors to discomfort. Ever sat down for a few hours and then felt achy when you stood up? This is exactly the same principle, and just like in that situation, gently moving around for a few minutes can banish those feelings of discomfort.

When we talk about gentle exercise, we’re not necessarily talking about going on a trek outside – although that can be a good idea, too. Moving around your house or going for a short walk around your garden can also work, as can something as simple as a foot massage. Massages help to stimulate blood flow and move your joints in a similar way to walking.

Pamper your feet

Whether you’re always on your feet or you lead a more sedentary lifestyle, your feet go through a lot. It’s important to pay as much attention to looking after your feet as you would your hands – and some of the same principles apply. Clipping your toenails and taking care of dry skin, calluses and other foot problems can help to relieve and prevent pain. Plus, a night of pampering foot care can help to make you feel better emotionally, as well as being deeply relaxing.

Try homemade pain relievers

Heat packs and cold compresses have been used as effective methods of pain relief for years, and that’s for the simple reason that they work. If you don’t need to be up and about, why not try putting your feet up on a footrest and taking advantage of the pain-relieving qualities of ice packs or foot warmers.

Important! Never apply heat or ice directly to your skin. Always make sure there is a layer of some sort, such as socks or a tea towel, in between to protect your skin from temperature burns.

Use pain medication

Another method of quick pain relief that’s more convenient if you need to be on the move is pain medication. Over-the-counter options such as paracetamol and ibuprofen can help to make your pain manageable so you can get on with your tasks for the day.

Remember, some medications can interfere with others and prevent them from working as they should. If you’re currently taking medication for another condition, it’s worth consulting your pharmacist to make sure that your choice of pain relief medication won’t counteract your other medicines.

Additionally, when you get your medication home, be sure to always read the patient information leaflet before taking the drug for the first time so you know how much to take, how often you can take it, and how to do so. This helps to make sure you get the best pain relief with the fewest side effects.

Speak to your doctor

Finally, if your pain is greater than usual, or has changed in any way, it’s a good idea to speak to your doctor about it. They will be able to help you identify potential causes for the change, as well as recommending treatment options that might help to ease your discomfort.

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