How To Relieve Pain In Foot In The Morning

Want To Learn How To Relieve Pain In Your Foot In The Morning? 

Watch the video below to learn simple tips that you can use to relieve pain in your foot in the morning.

Pain In The Morning Starts Your Day Out On The Wrong Foot

When you wake up first thing in the morning and you're tired and groggy, the last thing you want to start your day is getting out of bed and having pain.  Recently I posted about how to relieve back pain when you wake up.

This week's post will teach you how to relieve pain in your foot in the morning.

6 Easy Ways To East Plantar Fasciitis, written by St. Louis Plantar Fasciitis Specialist Dr. Dave Candy, Physical Therapist. 6 Easy Ways To Ease Plantar Fasciitis is full of self-treatment for plantar fasciitis. Published by More 4 Life Physical Therapy serving St. Louis County MO: Ballwin, MO; Manchester, MO, Chesterfield, MO; Ellisville, MO; Des Peres, MO

What Causes Pain In Your Foot In The Morning?

Pain in the foot can be caused by many different things.  When people complain of foot pain, they often mean different things anywhere from ankle pain, to pain in the toes.

The most common areas of foot pain in the morning are:

  1. Pain In Foot Arch
  2. Pain In Foot Heel

Pain In Foot Arch

If you get pain in the arch or sole of your foot in the morning, the thing that immediately comes to mind to most people is plantar fasciitis.  The "classic" symptom of plantar fasciitis is pain in the foot arch when first stepping out of bed.

That can be the case as the plantar fascia gets stretched when you put your foot on the floor, especially if your foot flattens or "pronates" as you step down.

However, "plantar fasciitis" literally means an inflammation of the fascia (tendon-like tissue) on the bottom of the foot.  If this were truly the case, after you've been resting all night long, the "inflammation" should be at it's lowest, not it's highest.

What more commonly causes pain in the arch in the foot is that the foot hasn't moved all night and so the muscles in your calf and foot get stiff.  Additionally, the nerves in that area don't get much blood flow, which makes them a little more irritable.

Nerves In And Tendons In The Foot

pain in foot in the morning can be caused by nerve entrapment

When you go to step down in the morning, your calf muscles aren't warmed up or flexible, so your foot flattens more and stretches out the stiff foot muscles, and additionally the nerves that run through under the inside arch of your foot.

When stiff muscles and irritable nerves get rapidly stretched after having been still for several hours, that sends a signal to your brain that "condition have changed in the foot". Your brain then interprets that message as potentially dangerous sends back a pain response telling you to "slow down and take it easy".

As you guardedly hobble to the bathroom, your muscle gradually get stretched out and bloodflow returns to your foot and nerves. Your brain realizes "all is good again", and slowly the pain dissipates.

Causes Of Pain In Foot Heel

Pain on the bottom of the heel can occur where the plantar fascia attaches to the heel bone (calcaneus). Bone spurs can also develop on the bottom of the heel at this attachment point.  As shown in the image above, nerves can also cause pain in the heel in the morning.

How To Relieve Pain In The Foot In The Morning

If stiff muscles, lack of bloodflow, and overpronation are causes of pain in the foot in the morning, then improving flexibility and bloodflow and controlling pronation can help relieve foot pain in the morning. These tips often work regardless of whether the pain is in the arch of your foot or your heel.

Tips To Relieve Foot Pain In The Morning:

  1. When you sit up from bed, dangle your legs off the side of the bed and swing your legs back and forth a few times.  This will help increase blood flow to your legs.
  2. Point your toes up and down a few times to loosen up your calf muscles so that they're more flexible when you go to put weight on them.
  3. When you put your foot down on the floor, curl your toes to lift your arch.  This will help prevent your foot from overpronating.
  4. Make your first few steps short steps.  Your calves still probably aren't fully stretched out, so taking shorter steps will help prevent you from overpronating (and causing foot pain) until your muscles get stretched out.

Watch the video above for more details.

Do Night Splints Relieve Foot Pain In The Morning?

For most people, not really.

Night splints keep your ankle in a 90 degree position and prevent your feet from pointing (plantarflexing) at night. They can help keep your calves from getting as stiff.  They may also keep you from sleeping comfortably though.

For most people, the subtle benefits of slightly increased flexibility isn't worth the trade-off of poorer quality sleep. Just stretch your calves properly sometime during the day instead.

Additionally, your feet are still elevated and stationary, so they're still not getting great blood flow.

Finally, if you step out of bed and go right back to overpronating your feet, the pain is likely to come back, so night splints don't really address the root cause of foot pain.

Not sure that your foot pain is Plantar Fasciitis? See our article on When Is Foot Arch Pain Not Plantar Fasciitis?

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