When we talk about RA, we rarely talk about rheumatoid arthritis foot pain and how it affects millions of people worldwide.
Even though 90% of Rheumatoid Arthritis patients develop symptoms in the feet.
Rheumatoid Arthritis is a chronic illness where the immune system attacks the joint tissues which in turn causes pain and swelling.
RA in the feet can occur in both feet and affect multiple joints in the foot.
Common Symptoms for Rheumatoid Arthritis Foot Pain:
- Stiffness in the toes that lasts more than half an hour
- Joint pain in both feet
- Nerve pain that causes tenderness, tingling, burning feeling.
- Warm feeling in one or more areas of the foot
Over time, RA in the foot can cause deformities in the feet even leading to “joint destruction” or when the bone and other joints break down or joint fusing making foot mobility a major challenge.
The Most Common Deformities Due To RA in the Feet:
- Bursitis – Inflammation of the bursa sac. These are the fluid-filled sacs that prevent friction between tissues.
- Bunions – enlargement of the joint on the big toe’s base.
- Hammertoe – a deformity of one or more toes that include abnormal bending.
- Lateral Drift – toes drift outward over time.
- Rheumatoid nodules – small, firm lumps that form under the feet.
Since we have no cure for RA, the best way to help relieve symptoms and reduce flare-ups is through treatments.
Here are some natural treatments you can use to help with Rheumatoid Arthritis foot pain:
RICE Method (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation)
It is a simple technique that reduces inflammation of the feet and reduces pain.
1. Foot/ Ankle Hot and Cold Wrap
RAPM’s Recommendation: Elasto Gel Hot/Cold Wrap – Buy Now
- Cold therapy constricts blood vessels which decreases blood flow to the joints. This method reduces swelling and inflammation.
- Heat therapy helps loosen muscles to help with spasm and joint stiffness.
2. Compression Foot Sleeves
RAPM’s Recommendation: SOX Plantar Fasciitis Compression Socks – Buy Now
- Provides help to the arch and heel.
- Helps with oxygen circulation to the feet.
- Ideal for daily wear
3. Leg Elevation Pillow
RAPM’s Recommendation: High-Density Leg Rest Elevating Foam Wedge – Buy Now
- Reduce swelling
- Improves blood circulation
- Alleviate pain and generates faster recovery from fatigue
Pamper your feet
Taking care of your feet is something so simple that many of us tend to forget. A small task like soaking your feet in warm water helps relax your feet and reduce inflammation. So always remember to take care of your feet.
4. Paraffin Bath
RAPM’s Recommendation: REVLON Paraffin Bath – Buy Now
- Paraffin wax treatment acts as a type of thermotherapy that relaxes the feet and increases blood flow.
- Help reduce joint stiffness in the feet.
5. 4 in 1 Foot Spa Massager
RAPM’s Recommendation: 5 in 1 Foot Spa/Bath Massager – Buy Now
- Provides deep massage to the feet
- Relaxes muscles and reduce pain
6. Foot Massage Slippers
RAPM’s Recommendation: Acupuncture Massage Slippers – Buy Now
- Designed to relieve foot pain and tension due to RA.
- Improves blood circulation
- Relaxes tired feet
Wear Proper Footwear
Listen to your feet. Choose the right shoes to wear. Make sure you choose for comfort, quality, and provide good support.
7. Walking Shoes
RAPM’s Recommendation: Skechers Women’s Go Walk – Buy Now
- No need to tie laces as they are slip ons.
- Features midsole design that supports your arch.
8. Memory Foam Slippers
RAPM’s Recommendation: RockDove Memory Foam Slipper – Buy Now
- Slip-on style, no need to bend over
- Includes foam sole – memory foam that molds to your feet
- Waterproof and anti-slip making it safe and comfortable to use.
Mind the Orthotics
Orthotic inserts on your shoes provide support when walking. It helps reduce the pressure you put on your feet.
9. Orthotic Shoe Insoles
RAPM’s Recommendation: Powerstep Arch Support Insoles – Buy Now
- Gives a firm shell and angled heel platform to provide control and foot arch support.
- Relieves heel pain
- Gives better arch stability
- Improves foot function
10. Arch Lift
RAPM’s Recommendation: 3-Point Arch Lift – Buy Now
- Meant to lift and support the arch to relieve foot pain.
- It contours to the foot to fully support the arch.
- Adjustable straps choose the level of support needed.
Wearing braces help ease the pressure at the back of your foot, relieving pain and discomfort.
11. Foot Support
RAPM’s Recommendation: Aircast Airlift Ankle Support Brace – Buy Now
- Provides ankle stabilization and foot support.
- Semi-rigid shells are created to the shape of the ankle for secure support and stabilization.
Manage Your Weight and Keep Moving
Losing weight helps alleviate the RA symptoms and improve your overall health. It is also advised to keep moving to improve joint function and flexibility.
Try low-impact exercises like walking, swimming, or doing yoga. Remember to not exert yourself too much when you are experiencing flare-ups.
12. Anti Inflammatory Diet Book Weight Loss Program and 4 Step Plan
RAPM’s Recommendation: Rheumatoid Arthritis Diet: Double Book Bundle – Buy Now
- Provides meals that will help you lose weight
- Recipes are specifically designed for people with RA
- Help fight inflammation
13. Yoga Therapy for Arthritis
RAPM’s Recommendation: Yoga Therapy for Arthritis – Buy Now
- Designed to present Yoga as a lifestyle that improves the quality of life for people with RA.
- Help reduce RA pain.
14. Sit and Be Fit Arthritis Workout
RAPM’s Recommendation: Sit and Be Fit Arthritis Workout – Buy Now
- Toning workout video that is done from a seated position.
- Compatible for everyone, from beginners to elderly.
15. Magnetic Mini Exercise Bike
RAPM’s Recommendation: Under Desk Bike Pedal Exerciser – Buy Now
- Works for both feet and hands.
- Has safety pedal straps for increased stability and safety.
- You can use it while sitting down.
Check Your Feet for Wounds and Cover Them
Check your feet daily for any wounds and cover them as soon as you see them.
Taking care of wounds on your feet lessens pain and the inclination of the wounds being infected can give you more pain and swelling.
It is imperative to go to the doctor if wounds do not heal after 2-3 days.
16. Toe Bandage Pad
RAPM’s Recommendation: Toe Protectors – Buy Now
- Made with materials that stretch and conform to your movement
- Ideal for toes, fingers, and other bending areas
17. Boot Bandages
RAPM’s Recommendation: Unna Boot Bandage with Zinc Oxide – Buy Now
- Ideal for patients with Venous Ulcers
- Covered with Calamine and Zinc Oxide
- Provides light compression to the foot
The greatest way to manage your RA foot pain is by keeping your RA under control.
One of the best ways to control your RA is through prevention.
Here are some tips to avoid foot pain:
- Avoid standing all day.
- Take warm foot baths and massages
- Choose the right pair of shoes that you will actually wear.
- Eat Healthy- Avoid gaining weight. The more weight you have, the more stress and pressure you put on your body and feet.
- Choose an exercise that does not put more pressure on your body and feet.
It is imperative that we take care of our feet, as mundane as it may sound.
Giving importance to feet care can go a long way in managing your Rheumatoid Arthritis foot pain.
There are a lot of ways to avoid flare-ups and pain, all you have to do is choose what works for you.