High arch feet, also known as cavus foot deformity, is when your arch, the area between your heel and the ball of your foot, is higher than usual. High arches can result in problems such as discomfort, pain, and even permanent complications of your skeletal structure.
In this blog, we will look at the following:
- What problems do high arches cause?
- What percentage of people have high arches?
- What causes high arch feet?
- What helps high arch foot pain?
What Problems Do High Arches Cause?
Besides occasional pain or discomfort, several conditions can develop as a consequence of high-arch feet, including:
Ankle Instability – Ankle instability increases your risk for ankle sprains.
Claw Toes – When your toes curl and dig into the soles of your shoes, which can negatively affect your ability to walk.
Hammertoes – The bending of the second, third, or fourth toes at the middle joint, appearing hammer-shaped and can result in pain that may require surgery to relieve.
Metatarsal Fractures – Because high arches can cause repeated stress, people with the condition may develop hairline fractures in the bones of the foot.
Metatarsalgia – Inflammation in the ball of the foot, resulting in pain after standing or walking for long durations.
Plantar Fasciitis – Inflammation of the ligament connecting your toes to your heel (plantar fascia), commonly resulting in sharp heel pain.
What Percentage of People Have High Arches?
About 20% of the population is estimated to have cavus feet (high arch feet).
What Causes High Arch Feet?
High arch feet are commonly a result of genetics or a symptom of other conditions, including:
- Spina Bifida
- Muscular Dystrophy
- Cerebral Palsy
- Spinal Tumors
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease (CMT)
What Helps High Arch Foot Pain?
Several options for treating high arch foot pain are available, depending on factors such as foot flexibility.
Treatments for high arch feet include:
Orthotics or Bracing: Orthotics custom-tailored to your feet will give you the best results in structurally correcting your feet as you walk and run, relieving you of pain and discomfort with a simple shoe insert or foot-and-ankle brace.
Night Splints: This method helps stretch your arches and calf muscles while you sleep. This is especially helpful if your high arches result in plantar fasciitis.
Icing: If you’re experiencing occasional high arch pain, icing your arches for about 20 minutes every two to three hours can relieve inflammation and pain.
Surgery: If conservative treatments aren’t effective in relieving pain and discomfort resulting from high arch feet, then cavus foot surgery may be recommended by your medical professionals. This procedure often involves altering your soft tissue (tendons) or removing bone from problematic areas of your foot.
Custom Orthotics for High Arch Foot Pain with Pongratz
If you’re struggling with pain or discomfort from high-arch feet, Pongratz is here to help you find relief. Utilizing state-of-the-art orthotics technology and expertise, our podiatrists will design custom-tailored shoe inserts that best fit your foot, correcting your walking and running while relieving you of pain and discomfort.