The term “pinched nerve” refers to a nerve that compressed or irritated by the tissues that surround it, sometimes as a result of trauma, but usually as a result of inflammation and swelling that causes the tissues surrounding the nerve to expand.
Morton's neuroma is a painful condition that develops when the nerve in the ball of your foot (the rounded portion below your toes) becomes irritated and sometimes thickened. The condition develops most commonly as a result of wearing high heels or shoes that are very tight and crowded in the toe area.
The most common symptoms include pain and burning sensations in the ball of your foot which become worse when pressure is applied to your sole, such as when walking. Sometimes, you may be able to feel the neuroma as a lump or knot below the skin, usually between the third and fourth toes. The symptoms of Morton's neuroma are relatively distinct, and it can usually be diagnosed with a physical examination of the foot. In a few cases, an x-ray may be ordered to rule out other possible causes.
Neuroma can often be treated with lifestyle changes, such as wearing shoes that don't crowd the toes and having custom orthotics made to provide better support, distribute your weight more evenly and avoid nerve irritation in the ball of your foot. Oral medications and injections may also be prescribed to help reduce pain and inflammation, and stretching exercises that promote flexibility in the Achilles tendon may help by relieving pressure exerted on the ball of the foot when walking. Walk and Smile also provides patients with a pain management kit that includes a specially-formulated product to reduce inflammation that can irritate the nerve so you feel more comfortable when walking.
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