People with inflammatory arthritis often deal with foot problems at some point in the disease process. Although you may not be able to stop or reverse foot problems, the way you care for your feet can make walking less painful.
Choose Shoes Wisely
Many people with inflammatory arthritis depend on sneakers because they are more comfortable. Remember when selecting any type of shoe, you may need to go up a half to whole size and opt for styles available in wider widths. The extra room will help accommodate swelling, reduce pressure points, and may be wearable even if your feet change. Dressier styles of shoes can be more challenging. Dress shoes that are in the style of loafers can be the best compromise between appearing more professional while offering you comfort. Avoid any high-heel shoe. Not only do you need to be concerned about your feet, but ankle instability can easily lead to falls or twisting your ankle.
Use Shoe Inserts
There is no perfect shoe, but you can make almost any style more comfortable to wear. Shoe inserts are your best option to add more cushioning to your shoes, which can reduce pain and minimize pressure points that could lead to calluses or corns. Although there are many shoe inserts on the market, it is not necessary to go with the most expensive option. Shoe inserts are meant to be changed regularly as they develop an odor or when they are no longer effective. Try to choose budget-friendly options that are on the thicker side, possibly made of gel or memory foam. These are more likely to be comfortable until they wear out, unlike inexpensive, thin options that may have no real benefits.
Consult A Specialist
When you have inflammatory arthritis, it is always a good idea to discuss your concerns with a podiatrist or other foot specialist. It is worth the investment to purchase custom shoes and orthotics, since these will be designed for your unique foot needs. At minimum, custom orthotics help target foot issues, such as pressure points and deformities, in addition to providing cushion. Custom orthotics for your unique foot needs can prevent you from developing corns and calluses, or at least minimize the amount of pain they cause. Since inflammatory arthritis often causes toe deformities, fallen arches, or other foot syndromes, orthotics can be used to specifically target these concerns so you can walk with less pain and possibly prevent exacerbation of foot conditions.
The first step to walking with less pain is addressing your unique concerns. When you have inflammatory arthritis, wearing comfortable shoes and talking with a professional about your foot problems can help.