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Why Do I Have Pain on Top of my Foot?

Why do I have pain on top of my foot, you ask? Well, there are so many bones, tendons and muscles in your foot. So, the answer is: many things could create that top of foot pain.

Now, today, we’ll walk you through the many reasons you may have pain on top of your foot. But, whatever the cause, please remember. We’re here to help you find relief. Like we did for our patient S. Bell, who shared after a recent visit, “Dr. Bachmann took the time to listen to me and clearly told me what my options were. He did not try to guide me toward one or the other and was very helpful is suggesting what treatments were available to me. He is not “one-size-fits-all” when it comes to treatment. I feel as though I was treated as an individual with my treatment geared to me specifically.”

Ready to figure out the cause of that top of foot pain? Just keep reading for some potential causes. And, if anything sounds familiar, be sure to schedule an appointment at one of our podiatrist offices in Spring, TX or Tomball, TX.

Did Tendonitis Cause Pain on the Top of my Foot? what causes pain on top of my foot

Tendonitis means one of your tendons is inflamed. And if tendonitis hits your tibalis anterior tendon (running down the front of your leg to the top middle of your foot) it could give you pain in the top of your foot.

If you have this type of tendonitis, your pain will mostly show up in the top middle of your foot. You may also have pain near your instep, closer to your big toe.  Now, these symptoms are also signs of shin splints. Which means you’ll have to come into the office for a diagnostic exam.

And if tendonitis is causing your top of foot pain? Icing and anti-inflammatory medications can help. We may also recommend some physical therapy, since certain exercises can take pressure off your inflamed tendon. Finally, because this condition is common with high arches, we may need to fit you for custom orthotics. That way, your problem won’t keep coming back!


Stress Fractures and Top of Foot Pain

You have five bones, called metatarsals, in the middle of your foot. And they’re delicate, so if you put too much pressure on them, they could develop tiny cracks, called stress fractures.) This type of injury is really common with runners. Especially if you’ve suddenly increased your training pace.

Signs of a metatarsal stress fracture include serious swelling. And your top of foot pain will show up right over your bones. If a stress fracture if causing your pain, you’ll have to give exercise a rest. And we’ll probably put you in a walking boot, so your fracture can properly heal without getting worse.

Irritation on the Top of Foot Irritation from shoes causes pain on top of my foot

Sometimes, the pain on top of your foot is actually a skin irritation. (Some runners call this ‘Vamp disease.’[i] It’s a common problem if you lace your running shoes too tight. And that’s why this top of foot pain usually shows up where your sneaker tongue hits your foot.

Luckily, we can clear up this foot pain with better shoe lacing techniques. And a pair of sneakers that fit you properly. Once we make those changes, the top of your foot should feel better in a few weeks.

Neuromas and Pain on the Top of My Foot

A neuroma is how we describe a nerve that’s swollen or inflamed. You’ve probably heard about Morton’s neuromas, which cause pain between your toes and near the ball of your foot.

But you can also get a neuroma in your forefoot, in between your metatarsal bones. The pain will feel sharp and burning, and could shoot up your foot and to your toes. If you’ve got a neuroma, you can find some pain relief with roomier shoes. (You really want pairs with room in the toe box.)

Then, once your shoes are on point, we’ll target that inflammation. Ice and medication can help. But if they don’t, you may need further testing to see if your top of foot pain is a sign of a bigger problem.

Arthritis Foot Pain

Because you have so many bones there, your feet are very vulnerable to osteoarthritis. That’s especially true if you put a lot of pressure on those feet, since osteoarthritis often attacks joints and bones that experienced trauma. Signs of foot arthritis include pain, swelling, stiffness and a loss of flexibility in your foot.

Unfortunately, there’s no cure for arthritis. But we can help manage your pain. And take action to preserve your mobility.

Of course, we can’t help if you don’t come and see us. That’s why, if you’re experiencing any kind of pain in the top of your foot, you should set up an appointment right away. The sooner you come in, the sooner we can provide you with the targeted pain relief you need!