What are Treatments for Fallen Arches?

Shoe insoles are one of the most common treatments for fallen arches.
Fallen arches cause the entire sole of the foot to rest on the ground.
A podiatrist may recommend the best treatment for fallen arches.
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  • Written By: Garry Crystal
  • Edited By: Niki Foster
  • Last Modified Date: 31 October 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
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Fallen arches result in the sole of the foot becoming flat. The entire sole of the foot will rest on the ground. This condition can lead to other problems, such as pain in the ankles, knees and feet. Pain may also be felt in the legs due to arch problems.

One of the most common treatments for fallen arches is to use arch inserts or supports. These can be placed into the sufferer’s shoes to support the fallen sole. The supports will be molded to the shape of the foot’s insole. They are designed to stabilize and realign the feet.

Arch supports can also improve poor posture problems, which can cause other complications such as knee or back pain. They are a good temporary cure for pain, but are not a long-term solution. Many people who suffer from chronic pain will not obtain long term relief from arch inserts or supports.

Medical treatment for fallen arches includes the use of medication. These can take the form of anti-inflammatory drugs and some steroids. These medicines provide short-term relief from pain, but long-term use is not advised. In the long run, these drugs can do more harm than good.

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Fallen arches are commonly caused by a weakening of the tendons near the ankles. The main tendon that supports the arches is called the posterior tendon. This can be affected by tendonitis, which is caused by inflammation. Other factors related to this condition include wear and tear and heavy activity that gradually wears down on the tendons. Bad circulation, obesity, diabetes and arthritis can also contribute to fallen arches.

Rather than treating the pain, many doctors advise strengthening the damaged or weakened tendons. A treatment called prolotherapy may help to repair tendons and cartilage damage. Prolotherapy is designed as a natural way to stimulate the body into repairing the areas where pain occurs.

Prolotherapy works by creating an inflammatory reaction in the areas where the tendons are weak. It is designed to promote inflammatory healing. This type of treatment is thought to be a permanent solution to the relief of pain and may repair damaged tendons and ligaments. Prolotherapy is a natural medical solution, but as with all treatments, a doctor should be consulted before beginning any therapy.

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Discuss this Article

anon336178
Post 11

Over the years, I have twisted my ankles repeatedly during sporting events. The last "severe" twisted ankle was x-rayed and nothing was found to be broken (although my ankle and foot turned every color in the rainbow). Since then, a bone at the top of my arch has been protruding, and now is the source of chronic pain. Cheap arch supports have done nothing to ease the pain. Time to see the Doc, I guess. I have put it off long enough!

anon308752
Post 9

I've had pain in between the ball of my foot and arch and running along the arch. Walking hurts, and the area is also tender to the touch. This has been going on for eight months. After trying orthotics and new shoes, I discovered that walking barefoot actually took away the pain (the orthotics were making it worse). Since I can't exactly walk around barefoot all the time, I bought some vibram fivefingers. I've only been wearing them for a day, but my feet feel a bit better already. I hope they continue to get better.

anon244749
Post 7

I'm 51 and I have severe foot pain in my left foot between the ball of the foot and the arch. Upon palpation, a good size lump can be felt.

I saw my chiropractor and he tested my feet and said I had flat feet. I was shocked as I never had them before, but during my youth I kept getting these charley horse type attacks in my arches causing such pain that I was unable to move and I would very aggressively massage and push on the area that would actually make my foot so it had no arch at all.

My family doctor sent me to a podiatrist to have it checked. The podiatrist ordered X-rays and found that I had a fallen arch. He also told me that the lump was "plantar fascia", and he said that I needed proper orthotic supports. I also currently suffer from numerous other illnesses that leave me in great pain all the time.

The problem with my arches just increases the amount of pain I suffer with. I am concerned that using orthotics for my foot is not going to help as a long term solution. I still have I hope at least another 35 or so years before I leave this earth. Has anyone had the surgery to repair the problem? I know everyone is different, but a rough idea would help I think. Did it help?

anon160672
Post 6

I'm 12 and i have fallen arches. i dance a lot and when I'm finished dancing, it hurts a lot.

BuzzKill
Post 5

@SoarAbove- While the main cause of why some people have fallen arches and some people don't hasn't yet been identified, there are steps people can take to slow down the development of fallen arches or relieve pain.

Wearing comfortable shoes with more foot support instead of popular shoes can help care for your feet and reduce pain. Also, buying a wide shoe size as opposed to a regular size can give feet more room to spread out. Once foot pain starts, taking time to sit and relax your feet and elevate them can reduce pain and swelling.

SoarAbove
Post 4

Is there a way to prevent fallen arches?

sriecke2009
Post 2

I had plantar fascia release and a 2nd tarsal tunnel release on the right foot 5 months ago. I am now experiencing that my arches are falling or have fallen. I believe maybe my doctor has released the fascia tendon too much and now I have a flatfoot. My foot is now worse than before. The reason she did a plantar fascia release was I was having pain again after a tarsal tunnel release 1 year later so she thought it was still plantar fascia even though I kept telling her the pain was like before. It turned out to be a tumor on the nerve putting pressure on the nerve. Maybe I did not even need the release after all!!!! Now, I am having very serious pain and think I need to find an attorney to help get damages.

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