A New York Podiatrist Helps You Identify Common Causes of Foot Pain

Posted by Dr. Jeffrey L. Adler

Dec 17, 2013 8:00:00 AM


There are many different types of foot pain you might experience, resulting from heredity to footwear to excessive activity.  Below a New York podiatrist at Adler Footcare explains common causes of foot pain and describes the pain you might be feeling.

 common types of foot pain

Achilles Tendonitis


Achilles tendonitis is caused by an overuse and injury to the Achilles tendon, the band of tissue that connects the calf muscles at the back of the lower leg to the heel bone. The pain begins as a dull ache in the back of the leg or above the heel.




A bunion is an abnormal bump that forms on the joint at the base of your big toe. It’s a bone deformity caused by your big toe pushing up against your other toes, which forces the big toe joint in the opposite direction. Bunions can be very painful, especially around the outside of the base of your big toe, and are best treated by a New York podiatrist performing bunion surgery.


Corns and Calluses


When your skin tries to protect itself against friction and pressure it develops thick, hardened layers known as a corn or callus. They can create mild discomfort usually caused by friction or pressure.

Hammertoe, Mallet Toe or Claw Toes


These are exactly what they sound like – an abnormal bend in the toe that causes the toe to resemble a hammer, mallet or claw. The pain or pressure caused by these conditions can often be felt just by moving your toe and is often related to improper footwear that causes your toes to be forced against the front of your shoe.


Heel Pain and Heel Spur


Heel pain is most commonly felt on the back of your heel, often caused by plantar fasciitis or Achilles tendonitis. Sometimes it is caused by a heel spur. Although painless itself, the heel spur is a calcium deposit on the underside of the heel bone. There could be many others causes of your heel pain that are best discussed with your New York podiatrist at Adler Footcare, especially when your pain begins to interfere with your normal activities.


Ingrown Toenail


An ingrown toenail occurs when one of your toenails begins to grow into the corner or side of the skin on your toe. It can be painful, sometimes a constant throbbing, especially if left untreated and becoming infected.


SEE ALSO: Tips from a New York Podiatrist | How to Keep an Ingrown Toenail from Getting Worse




Metatarsalgia is pain and inflammation in the ball of your foot. It can feel like a sharp, aching or burning pain or numbness and tingling in your toes. The pain worsens when you flex your feet, stand, walk or run.


Morton’s Neuroma or Morton’s Toe


Morton’s neuroma also affects the ball of your foot and is caused by a thickening of the tissues around a nerve leading to your toes. Pain is most commonly felt between your third and fourth toes. The pain experienced is sometimes described as if feeling like you are standing on a pebble in your shoe or a burning sensation.


Overlapping Toes


The structure of your toe joints could cause overlapping toes that could be painful because they are preventing the foot from functioning the way it’s supposed to.


Over Pronation


Over pronation occurs when you’re walking or running, and your foot rolls inward and the arch of the foot flattens. It’s a common occurrence, but when it is excessive it can lead to pain and injuries in the foot, lower leg, knee, thigh, or back, especially in runners.


SEE ALSO: Tips from a New York Podiatrist: How to Select a Proper Running Shoe


Plantar Fasciitis


The plantar fascia is a thick band of tissue that runs across the bottom of your foot and connects your heel bone to your toes. When it becomes painful and inflamed it’s called plantar fasciitis. It’s a common cause of heel pain that feels like your heel is being stabbed. It usually occurs when you first step on your feet in the morning.


Post-Tib Tendonitis


The posterior tibial tendon runs along the inside of the ankle and foot. Post-Tib tendonitis is experienced when this tendon becomes strained and doesn’t function properly to hold up the arch of your foot, resulting in flat feet. Pain can be felt in your heel, arch or plantar fascia.




Sesamoiditis affects the front of the foot and is an irritation of the sesamoid bones, the tiny bones in the tendons that run to the big toe. Pain usually begins as a mild ache and gradually increases as the bones become aggravated. It can build into an intense throbbing that may mean you need to decrease your activity.


If you’re experiencing chronic foot pain that is keeping you from participating in your normal activities, or you’d like more information about one of the topics above, contact a New York podiatrist at Adler Footcare. We believe feet shouldn’t hurt and neither should their treatment.


Topics: Tips from a New York Podiatrist, foot pain