Your Guide To Morton’s Neuroma And Running

Help Runners With Morton's Neuroma

As a runner, the health of your feet is crucial to your ability to pursue and enjoy your passion. When pain and inflammation start to interfere with your mobility and comfort levels, your running can suffer. That is why it is important to identify the issue, seek guidance, and undertake the required treatment.

One condition that runners can deal with is called Morton’s neuroma. This affects the ball of the foot and can create discomfort that ranges from a mild ache to a burning pain. The problem typically arises from overuse and can benefit from simple changes to lifestyle and routine, and appropriate therapy such as podiatry.

When running is a regular part of your life, the last thing you want is an inflammatory foot condition holding you back. At 13th Beach Health Services, we are here to support you so you can continue running safely and comfortably.

What Is Morton’s Neuroma?

This inflammatory condition involves the soft tissue surrounding the nerves that are found in the front of the foot. When there is regular pressure and overuse of this area, the tissue can thicken. This is the body’s way of trying to protect the nerves from force and friction.

The space between the metatarsal bones decreases as the tissue becomes larger, which leads to the bones rubbing against the soft tissues and pressure on nearby ligaments, creating pain and more swelling. Numbness or tingling may also occur.

Morton’s neuroma is not a true neuroma, despite the name. It is not a tumor of the nerves. 

How Can Running Cause Or Impact Morton’s Neuroma?

When it comes to running, some reasons for this condition can include:

  • The high impact nature of running. As the feet hit the ground, the force they take can be up to four times your body weight. Doing this for a long distance and/or regularly can result in significant stress on your feet.
  • Inappropriate or poor-fitting shoes. If shoes are causing pressure on your feet, this amplifies the pressure they sustain during the act of running.
  • Other issues that further increase the pressure on your feet or influence the way you place them as you run. These may include problems such as flat arches, hammertoes, or bunions.
  • Incorrect running technique can increase the pressure and friction placed on the soft tissues in your feet.

What Are The Symptoms Of Morton’s Neuroma?

The discomfort caused by Morton’s Neuroma is generally situated at the ball of the foot between the third and fourth toes. It typically occurs in just one foot. It can feel like there is something underneath your foot, such as a fold in your sock or a rock in your shoe. This can increase to a hot, sharp pain, and you may experience numbness or tinging in surrounding areas. Symptoms can change in intensity and type depending on your activity levels, and may last for a short period of time or go for weeks or months.

 When Should You Seek Treatment?

You may find the pain involved means you to have no choice than to stop running. On the other hand, you may be able to keep going. However, pushing through is not an effective way of healing this issue and can make it worse. If this condition is not treated early, it can become harder to improve.

If you are experiencing symptoms that are decreasing or preventing your ability to run, it can be highly beneficial to seek treatment. At 13th Beach Health Services, we have a wide range of options that can help to improve Morton’s neuroma. Podiatry can be particularly helpful as it involves the diagnosis and treatment of issues pertaining to the feet.

What Can Improve Morton’s Neuroma?

A fundamental step to take in finding relief is to rest. This will provide the soft tissues time to reduce in size and heal before being subjected to more pressure and friction that will only prolong the issue.

Combining rest with other treatment options is recommended. These can include:

  • Applying ice.
  • Therapy from professionals such as our podiatrists and physiotherapists. They can provide treatment such as manual therapy, acupuncture, and orthotics prescription.
  • Guidance from our experienced therapists regarding correct footwear. This includes features such as a spacious toe box, a supportive sole, and a proper fit.
  • Treatment for other conditions that are impacting your Morton’s Neuroma.
  • Anti-inflammatory medication as directed.
  • Corticosteroid injections given by a doctor to reduce the inflammation if improvement is particularly difficult.
  • Surgery is generally a last resort.

Seeking Treatment For Morton’s Neuroma As A Runner

Because this condition is impacted by ongoing pressure, which is part and parcel of running, it is inevitable that it will persist or get worse if left untreated. Our experienced and qualified therapists can support you with a thorough assessment and creation of a personalised treatment plan to help to improve your Morton’s neuroma. Contact us today to make an appointment.