Teachers, nurses, doctors, chefs and construction workers… what do they all have in common? Probably very sore feet! Many professions involve being on your feet all day, and whilst it’s a good thing to be less sedentary at work, it can play havoc with your feet!
Prolonged foot pain can lead to serious problems and lasting damage, so we’ve rounded up our top tips for dealing with foot pain, which will be particularly useful if you have to stand for hours at a time.
1. Proper footwear
When you’re on your feet all day, your shoes are incredibly important. Make sure you’re wearing a pair of shoes that fit you well – it’s worth getting measured as many people are surprised to find they aren’t wearing the right size shoe! Make sure the footwear you choose has good support and that the soles aren’t worn out. Fashion, unfortunately, needs to take a back seat to practicality when you work on your feet all day.
2. Practice strengthening exercises
Prevention is better than cure, so try to prioritise strengthening your feet and legs. Regularly exercising the feet and ankles can help to ensure that muscles are providing the best support. Here’s a great selection geared towards strengthening your feet, ankles and legs.
3. Anti-fatigue floor mats or arch supports
Speak to your employer about anti-fatigue mats in the workplace. These can make a big difference if you’re currently standing on a really hard floor all day. In addition, try a pair of arch supports for your shoes. These help to reduce the shock your feet experience with every step. They’re available at most chemists and can make a big difference to your day-to-day pain.
Overstressed muscles will tend to contract or spasm – make sure you take time throughout your day to stretch your legs and feet. Sit in a comfortable position and stretch the ankle and toe joints using your hands or a strap. To also target the calf muscles, try a runner's stretch while leaning against a wall. Hold each motion comfortably for 10 to 20 seconds for maximum benefit. These are best done every few hours to help keep pain at bay.
Time for a loved-one to step in and give your sore feet a rub, or you can always do this by yourself too. Use pain relief cream to massage your tired feet and concentrate on smoothing out those muscles and releasing tension, but don’t go too hard! If you prefer, you could also treat yourself to a professional foot massage and ask them to focus in on your sore spots.
6. Foot bath
One of the best remedies for relaxing sore muscles is a foot bath. Simply fill a deep basin with warm water, add some Salts and then soak your tired feet for 15-20 minutes. Adding relaxing essential oils is another way to make this a more enjoyable experience and soothe your mind too.
Having pained feet can make you feel very uncomfortable, especially when you have after work plans. Try to keep a tube of pain relief cream with you while you are out and about to give you that extra support when you need it.