Ankle and Foot Pain Osteopath Surrey
Ankle and foot pain can happen to anyone for numerous reasons, regardless of their age. However, some causes are more common in athletes (sports injuries) or those who engage in walking and running a lot.
Osteopathy can benefit those suffering from ankle and foot pain by using a range of treatment modalities. But before that, let’s talk about the main conditions that cause foot and ankle pain in the first place.
Common Causes of Ankle and Foot Pain
Repeated high impact on your feet and ankles increases the possibility of ankle sprains due to awkward landing or overuse. Ankles can often get injured, and ankle pain can worsen since we need to walk constantly.
These are some of the structures that can cause ankle and foot pain when affected:
- Ligaments and Retinacula
- Joints and muscles
- Nerves and bursa
Some of the conditions leading to ankle and foot pain can be found below.
This is caused when excessive pressure on the ball of the foot causes thickening of the surrounding fibrous connective tissue. The compression of nerves in between the bases of the toes can lead to pain, difficulty in walking, or a feeling of numbness in the foot.
This is commonly known as a twisted ankle, with the most common being when you go over the outside of the foot and can happen to anyone, though it is a frequent injury affecting athletes of all abilities. Inadequate rehabilitation of ankle sprains will often lead to further injury in the future.
This is a condition that creates ache, swelling and stiffness of the Achilles tendon. It can be caused by overuse, muscle weakness/imbalance, overstretching, excessive exercise or repeated minor injuries to that tendon.
Repeated loading of the plantar fascia (a thick fibrous tissue on the sole of the foot) can cause plantar fasciitis. Over walking, gaining bodyweight, or unsupportive and constrictive footwear can cause Plantar Fasciitis. One of the most common signs of Plantar Fasciitis is heel pain first thing in the morning or after sitting for prolonged periods.
Degeneration of the joints can occur following trauma, disease or as a natural process with ageing. This can lead to joint stiffness, pain, swelling and weakness.
Osteopathic Treatment for Ankle and Foot Pain
The procedure of osteopathic treatment requires a few steps – assessment, diagnosis, treatment and any special recommendations.
The assessment for ankle and foot pain is pretty simple compared to more complex joints, but careful consideration is required to rule out serious damage. In this step, among other questions, you would be asked how long the pain has been there, whether there was an injury or not, or if it hurts to move it a certain way.
In short, osteopaths would be interested in the history of the issue and the active and passive range of movements. Some relevant tests might also be undertaken for further assessment.
The next step is diagnosis. This lets the osteopaths understand the structural issues with your ankle and foot pain and what they can do for you. This is a crucial step since often, the problem might be pretty simple and unnecessarily complicated treatments might prove counterintuitive.
Many other treatments might promote increased ankle movements, which is the last thing you would want to do to a sprained ankle. Osteopathy takes a more holistic approach to the problem.
Often osteopathy can be combined with other forms of treatment, which may produce better healing of ankle and foot pain. However, if the condition is not suitable to be treated by osteopathy, you would be recommended to other specialists.
Treatment for ankle and foot pain from an osteopath might include the following:
Manipulation of the muscles and soft tissues in the specific or surrounding areas helps ease the pain. In some instances, it addresses the thickening of tissues, and through therapy, releases tension from the muscles.
Joint mobilisation therapy, is a technique to relieve pain and muscle spasms, releases tension and restores function and flexibility to the joints.
Stretching, only if advised and required.
Stability and strengthening exercises, which will be recommended by your osteopath when it is appropriate and safe.
We will also ensure that enough precautions are taken beforehand so that the pain does not worsen due to the exercises being done correctly.
We may provide other recommendation, tailored to specific individual needs.
At Arc osteopathy, your first appointment will be to establish the cause of your pain and stiffness through a consultation and examination. We then provide a treatment and rehab program for you.
Below you’ll find an example of an ankle assessment. Our patients are given access to our patient video library with specific exercises videos to aid their recovery.
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