Feet and Arthritis
Any joint in your ankles, feet and toes can be affected by arthritis. Many different types of arthritis can affect the feet and cause joint pain, swelling and stiffness. Arthritis in the feet can make standing and walking painful. You may find your feet and or/toes change shape, making it harder to fit shoes. Here are some things that may help you manage your arthritis.
Exercise is important to keep your joints moving, however you may need to try different types of exercise if you have painful feet. For example, consider exercising in water. The buoyancy of the water takes pressure off your ankles and feet and you may find you can move more freely than you can on land. If you are fairly fit, you could swim laps or join water aerobics. There may be suitable classes at local pools or at hydrotherapy pools usually located at hospitals, community health or rehabilitation centres. Strength training and cycling are also good forms of exercise that do not put extra pressure on sore feet. If you are walking or standing, make sure you wear supportive, comfortable shoes.
One of the best ways to take pressure off painful ankles and feet is to lose any extra body weight. Being overweight can make your symptoms worse as your joints need to carry more weight.
See the Podiatrist
Podiatrists specialise in conditions of the feet, they can help you with advice about footwear, nail care and orthoses. You will not need a referral to see a podiatrist in the private sector but you will to see the hospital podiatrist.