While ankle and foot arthritis are far less common than arthritis of bigger joints such as the knee and hip, they can still be painful and debilitating. Our feet and ankles go through a lot over time and hold a lot of weight and pressure, so it’s important that we pay attention to the signs and symptoms of foot and ankle arthritis.
What Are Some Symptoms?
Symptoms may include pain and swelling in the ankle, trouble putting weight on the affected foot or feet, tenderness in the joint, and/or stiffness and swelling. You might even notice slight physical deformity around the ankle.
What Kinds are There?
There are many different types of arthritis that can occur in the ankle or foot, the most common one being osteoarthritis, which is due to wear-and-tear on one’s bones from aging. It’s known as a degenerative joint disease in which joints rub against each other or start to wear down. Another type is rheumatoid arthritis, which is the most serious form of arthritis. Psoriatic arthritis may occur in your ankles, toes, or other joints in the body. There is also post-traumatic arthritis, which occurs after an injury, and you might not even experience symptoms of it until years after. Gout is another type of arthritis that can plague the feet, caused by too much uric acid in the body which then crystalizes.
Are There Ways to Prevent It?
While for some people it might be inevitable with age, there certainly are ways to prevent ankle and foot arthritis, one of which being managing your weight. If your ankles and feet are supporting a lot of weight for a long time, the weight will start to wear down on your ankle cartilage faster. Low-impact exercise is another great way to prevent this type of arthritis. Following exercises that stretch and work your muscles and joints including your achilles tendon or toes all help keep your joints healthy and prevent arthritis. Wearing sturdy, supportive shoes that hold your ankles steady and keep them from rolling can also prevent arthritis. Avoiding flat flip flops that don’t support your arch or ankle is always a good idea. Try to avoid eating a lot of foods with high levels of purines, which then causes a buildup of uric acid, to help prevent gout. Some of these foods include asparagus, cauliflower, seafood, soft drinks, and liver.
Treatment at Mitchell Foot & Ankle
While there are at-home remedies such as taking NSAIDS like ibuprofen, using topicals, or applying ice or heat, if you don’t know when to see a podiatrist for your ankle or foot pain, call our office today to get evaluated for arthritis. There are many treatments we offer to curb the pain and manage symptoms, with a wide array of comprehensive solutions ranging from shoe inserts to physical therapy to surgery. When it comes to picking the right foot doctor near Bronzeville, Chicago, Mitchell Foot & Ankle will work with you to find solutions for your foot and ankle problems. We look forward to hearing from you!