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What causes burning feet?

By Foot health with Leana

Clients come in complaining bitterly that they feel like someone cut their feet and put pepper in them. Often enough you also would hear persons hissing like a snake, the most common indicator that burning is occurring.

Seniors 50 years and over tend to be at high risk for this condition. We have found that teachers, entrepreneurs, and generally persons on their feet for long hours, especially if they use very high heels are prime candidates as well.

Understanding this condition

Long standing inflammation causes the deposition of calcium at the point where the plantar fascia inserts into the heel. This results in the appearance of a sharp thorn like a heel spur on x-ray. The heel spur is asymptomatic (not painful); the pain arises from the inflammation of the plantar fascia.

Symptoms include a dull ache which is felt most of the time with episodes of a sharp pain in the centre of the heel or on the inside margin of the heel.

Often the pain is worse on first rising in the morning and after rest; it can be aggravated by prolonged weight bearing and thin- soled shoes.

Other Symptoms

These are the common symptoms; however, they can be the same symptoms experienced with other ailments:

• Red feet

• Swollen feet

• The burning sensation, which varies in intensity depending on the individual circumstances of the person

• Stinging sensation in feet

• Increased skin temperature in the feet.

Causes

Having diabetes is one of the most popular causes of this condition. Others causes include:

• Dampness, together with friction, which leads to the sensation of burning.

• Inappropriate socks.

• Athlete's foot can sometimes spread to cause a burning sensation on the sole of the foot.

• Allergic reaction to shoe material or socks.

• Vitamin deficiency (vitamin B12 and occasionally vitamin B6)

• Kidney failure

• Thyroid problems

• Liver damage

• Blood disorders

• Alcohol is also a contributing factor. Long term use can affect the nervous activity of the feet.

• Neuropathy, caused by the diabetes

• Smoking

• Neuroma, trapped nerve can lead to a hot burning sensation.

• Gout can cause a burning sensation on the side of the foot.

• Metatarsalgia

Treatments

• Use essential oils to massage the feet.

• Buy socks that have adequate ventilation.

• Use shoes that let the perspiration evaporate.

• If you are suffering from athlete's foot, then treat that condition.

• Stop alcohol and smoking consumption.

• Explore the possibility of utilising products that could improve the circulation.

• Use creams that have a cooling effect.

• Exercise, this helps with poor circulation.

• Do electrical therapy

• Have professional circulatory massages done on a regular basis to improve blood flow.

• Use of orthotics (arch supports).

• Dialysis to remove toxins if there's chronic kidney problems.

• For people with diabetic neuropathy it means keeping your sugar levels in the normal range. This usually requires dietary changes, oral medications, and often insulin injections.

• Take additional vitamin B12 orally or by injection, to replace low levels of this nutrient.

Your feet mirror your general health . . . cherish them!

Leana Huntley is an English trained foot health practitioner attached to ALMAWI Limited – The Holistic Clinic. Call to make an appointment at 662-1732 or lhuntley@almawiclinic.com Tuesday - Saturday. Check for the clinic at www.almawiclinic.com.

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