Foot Pain - Work Safety Boots

Foot Pain from Work Safety Shoes

pain in feet

Work safety boots are essential to protect our feet from occupational hazards are part and parcel of virtually every manual labour job in Australia.

Most safety boots are heavy, with reinforced tips that shield against potential damage to the toes. The soles are reinforced to protect against potential sharp objects on the ground from piercing the feet.

Commonly available work safety boots are often found to be inadequate footwear for long term well-being of the feet and have been proven to lead to developing pain and discomfort in the heel.

Chronic cases can lead to the formation of painful bone growths like heel spurs and other conditions. A patient can often experience pain and discomfort as a result and their quality of life suffers.

Causes of Foot Pain from Work Safety Boots

Foot pain is a relatively common side-effect of long-term use of commonly made work boots. The condition is a direct result of overloading the feet due to excessive strain. Some of the most commonly known risk factors include:

    • Uncomfortable Work Safety Boots

      • Commonly made work safety footwear is the leading cause of pain in manual labourers. This happens because the rigid and solid material meant to shield from work-related accidents ends up severely restricting the natural movement of the feet and the joints.
      • The shoes encourage unhealthy proprioception that exerts unnatural and excessive pressure on the feet. In the long run, this can lead to developing complications in the feet that lead to persistent sharp pain and discomfort.
    • The Level of Intensity Involved in the Occupation

      • It is noted that the stress on the feet is proportional to the progression of the condition.
      • The more intense the physical labour or the longer the time spent in uncomfortable work safety boots, the higher the chances of developing symptoms and progressing degeneration.
      • Many worksites where people are on their feet all day are where this occurs more frequently.
    • Unhealthy Proprioception exacerbates the strain on the ankle in addition.
    • Inherent malformations in the feet and certain other hereditary factors can make certain patients especially vulnerable.
work safety shoes

Foot Pain Due to Work Safety Shoe Symptoms

foot pain work shoes

The symptoms of the condition typically depend on the progression of the disease. In most cases a patient suffering from this condition experiences:

  • Pain in one or both feet. Episodic pain is common after long periods of inactivity. Especially the morning after a long night’s sleep. The pain subsides over the day, but the condition may remain hidden until the symptoms get much worse.
  • The skin in the surrounding area may become irritated and turn red. There is usually some associated swelling in the feet and general discomfort.

Chronic Case Symptoms

Long term neglect and progression of the disease can result in chronic cases of pain in the foot. There are real risks of developing complications like:

  • Development of bone growths on the surface of the heel, called Heel Spurs. These can be very painful and leads to significant swelling around the heel.
  • Development of a bulge on the heel bone due to an abnormality in the heel bone and the soft tissue in the feet. This condition is referred to as Haglund’s syndrome.
  • Development of inflammation of the tendon plate under the sole of the foot, known as plantar fasciitis.

Immediate medical treatment is highly advised to prevent the long-term degeneration of the feet. Early diagnosis is the best prognosis!

Diagnosis of Foot Pain Due to Work Safety Shoes

An orthopedic specialist or GP is the best medical practitioner to seek advice from when experiencing foot pain. A thorough physical check and patient history help understand the risk factors on an individual basis. In this case, an examination of a patient’s occupation can be valuable.

Sophisticated imaging technology like X-rays can be used to determine the location and progression of the bone growths on the heel bone or diagnose Haglund’s syndrome. Together this information can help form an effective prognosis.

Foot Pain - Work Safety Boots Treatment

Treatment for pain in the foot is mostly conservative and is centred around alleviating the symptoms and taking measures to prevent the progression of the condition.

The level of treatment mainly depends on the progression of the symptoms and a study of the complications caused by the disease. Some of the more useful and effective ways to manage the condition include:

  • Lifestyle Changes to Relieve the Foot

    • It is crucial to relieve the foot from the excess strain it is under. Well, fit work boots along with special socks that provide heel support (Training compression socks) can help provide support and relief to the heel.
    • Reducing your body weight and combating obesity help to reduce the weight on your feet and greatly reduces the strain on the heel bone. Initially, a change to a healthier diet and later controlled physiotherapy can provide wonderful results.
  • Prescribed Medication

    • When there is significant inflammation in the feet, patients may find it very beneficial to use prescribed anti-inflammatory and analgesics. Mild cases are often managed conservatively with cooling and ice packs and mild anti-inflammatories to manage the swelling temporarily.
    • In advanced patients with chronic symptoms, local injections of Cortisone are more effective.
  • Physiotherapy Exercises

    • It is highly recommended that the muscles in the calf and foot are regularly exercised to build strength.
    • Developing these muscles can help reduce the stress on the bone as well as combat the progression of the condition. Multiple sessions a day for a few months can rapidly improve a patient’s prognosis.
  • Medical Orthopedic Insoles

    • Optimally shaped medical orthopedic work safety shoe inserts are very effective as both a preventative measure and to slow down the degeneration of the Calcaneus (heel bone).
    • The insoles help protect the foot from excess stress as well as encourage the natural movement of the foot. The insoles can also serve as a comfortable cushion for patients with inherent malformations in the structure of the foot.
    shoe insoles
  • Surgical Intervention

    • Only in rare cases of heel spurs or advanced Haglund’s syndrome does surgery become necessary. Most cases of the condition are managed conservatively.
    • Some patients might require surgery to correct the excess bone growth or correct the bulge to restore structure and mobility to the foot. However, surgery is a risky procedure and is usually the last resort to provide relief to a patient.

Orthopedic shoe insoles for work

Medical orthopedic shoe insoles like the ErgoPad Redux Heel 2 are an effective tool in both preventing the onset of the condition as well as managing the risks of regular use of work safety boots.

They act as a cushion for the heels, relieving them from. The insert transfers the load from the bodyweight to the entire foot and encourages healthy proprioception.

The ErgoPad Redux Heel 2 insoles are designed to fit snugly inside your work safety boots and prevent the foot from slipping out of the shoe.

Patients using the insert on a regular basis find it easier to stand for extended periods of time and have reported relief from the pain. The skin-friendly material is easy to clean and very durable, making it perfect for daily use.

The Sports Ball & Racket socks are also excellent at managing cases of heel pain in conjunction with insoles, by providing medical-grade compression along the entire foot, and cushioning all of the surfaces to allow less pressure on the heel itself.

For more serious cases we offer semi custom made insoles designed specifically for work boots that a podiatrist may customise for specific patients. Please contact us on 1300 668 466 or info@bauerfeind.com.au to find out more about the ErgoPad Work h and x

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