Feet Hurt When You Wake Up? Causes & Treatment

December 15, 2023 4 min read

Understanding Morning Foot Pain

Morning foot pain can be a frustrating and persistent issue for many individuals. Experiencing pain in the feet, heels, and other parts of the feet upon waking up can be due to several factors. Identifying the cause of discomfort is essential to manage and treat it effectively.

To identify the cause of your foot pain, it is advisable to consult a medical professional who can evaluate your specific symptoms and recommend an appropriate course of action to alleviate the discomfort. In the meantime, gentle stretching exercises and the application of ice or heat to the area can provide temporary relief. Proper self-care and attention to your footwear can also help reduce the likelihood of recurrent morning foot pain.

Common Causes of Foot Pain

Plantar Fasciitis - Occurs when the plantar fascia, a thick band of tissue running along the bottom of the foot, becomes inflamed. This inflammation is often caused by excessive stress on the arches or flat feet. 

Arthritis -As we age, the cartilage in our joints naturally wears down, leading to pain and stiffness, especially in weight-bearing joints like the feet. Inflammatory arthritis, such as rheumatoid arthritis, can also result in foot pain as the immune system attacks and inflames the joints and surrounding tissues.

Injury - Sprains, strains, or fractures can cause foot pain and discomfort. Pain from an injury may worsen during the night, making it more noticeable upon waking. Overuse injuries are also common in the feet, particularly for individuals who participate in sports or other activities that involve repetitive foot movements.

Foot Deformities -Bunions, hammertoes, or fallen arches can lead to foot pain and discomfort. These conditions alter the foot's natural structure, placing strain on the ligaments, tendons, and muscles. As these structures are forced to bear weight and function differently, it can result in pain and inflammation.

Symptoms to Look Out For

Stiffness - Particularly in the morning, could be due to inadequate support or strain on the muscles and ligaments in the foot. 

Swelling - Around the affected area, which indicates inflammation and discomfort.

Heel Pain - Usually concentrated around the heel area, can be a sign of plantar fasciitis. Heel pain might be most noticeable during the first steps in the morning or after long periods of inactivity.

Morning Stiffness - This can make it difficult to move the feet and may cause the muscles to feel tense or tight. Morning stiffness typically lessens as the day goes on and the feet have had time to warm up and loosen.

Fatigue may be a symptom associated with achy feet in the morning. Fatigue, in this regard, refers to the feeling of exhaustion that arises from the discomfort and pain experienced by the individual. This can further impact one's mobility and overall well-being.

Medical Consultation and Diagnosis

It is important to visit a doctor or an expert if one experiences persistent heel pain or achy feet in the morning. Initially, the medical professional will thoroughly examine the feet, asking about the individual's medical history and the frequency and intensity of the pain.

Upon identifying the root cause, the physician will develop a personalized treatment plan to address the specific issue. This may include recommendations on medical interventions, lifestyle changes, and exercises to alleviate the problem and prevent future occurrences. The doctor may also provide guidance on selecting proper footwear, prescribe orthotics, or recommend other supportive measures to reduce morning foot pain.

Treatment Options

Medication - anti-inflammatory medications can help reduce inflammation and pain. Over-the-counter options include ibuprofen and naproxen. It is important to follow the dosing instructions and consult a healthcare professional if symptoms persist.

Physical Therapy -A physical therapist can assess the individual's specific needs and develop a tailored treatment plan. This plan may include exercises to strengthen the foot and lower leg muscles, stretching routines, and ultrasound or electrical stimulation therapies.

Lifestyle Modifications -Certain lifestyle modifications can help alleviate morning foot pain. Some suggestions include:

  • Wearing supportive footwear: Choose shoes with good arch support and cushioning to reduce stress on the feet.
  • Maintaining a healthy body weight: Excess weight can put additional strain on the feet, leading to discomfort.
  • Avoid long periods of standing or sitting: Taking breaks to stretch and move throughout the day can help minimize foot pain.

Physical Activities and Exercises

  • Stretching exercises are essential to maintaining flexibility in the feet. One popular option is the calf stretch, which helps lengthen the calf muscles and tendons that connect to the foot. To perform the calf stretch, stand facing a wall with one foot forward and the other back. Keep your hands on the wall for support, and gently lean into the wall while keeping the heel of the back foot flat on the ground. Hold the stretch for 20-30 seconds, then switch to the other leg.
  • Strengthening exercises can also improve foot health by developing the small muscles that support the arch of the foot. Toe curls are an effective strengthening exercise that can be done while seated or standing. Put a towel on the floor, place your feet flat on top of the towel, and use your toes to scrunch the towel towards you. Repeat this action 10-15 times for each foot.

Appropriate footwear - worn during physical activities. Supportive, well-fitted shoes can make a significant difference in preventing achy feet in the morning. Aim for shoes with good arch support, cushioning, and proper fit to ensure comfort and stability.

For extra support, grab some Benefab Therapeutic Support Socks! The far-infrared-infused material helps with circulation and ultimately reduces pain and stiffness. 

Proper Footwear and Support

Proper footwear plays a significant role in maintaining overall foot health and preventing achy feet in the morning. It is essential to select shoes that provideadequate support, cushioning, and fit comfortably to alleviate pressure and minimize discomfort.

To reduce the chance of experiencing achy feet, consider these points when selecting proper footwear:

  • Arch support: Shoes should provide adequate arch support, as weak or fallen arches can lead to foot pain and other issues.
  • Cushioning: Choose footwear with proper cushioning to absorb the impact of walking and running, preventing excessive strain on the feet.
  • Adjustable fit: Opt for shoes with adjustable features, such as laces or straps that allow for a customized fit.
Sufficient toe box: Ensure the shoe has a wide enough toe box to accommodate the foot without causing pressure or discomfort.


Also in Blog

How Long Can a Horse Go Without Water?
How Long Can a Horse Go Without Water?

February 23, 2024 2 min read

Horses are large mammals that require a lot of water to survive. A horse’s body is made up of almost 70% water. Horses lose water through sweat, urination, and other bodily functions. A horse should consume 0.5 gallons of water per 100 pounds of body weight daily. Horses can also gain water from feed. Hay and grass contain 10-15% water. However, grains have almost no water.
What is the Importance of Maintaining a Neutral Posture?
What is the Importance of Maintaining a Neutral Posture?

February 16, 2024 2 min read

Sufferers of back pain have probably heard of the benefits of neutral posture. However, it might be a new term if you just recently noticed some back pain or tension. A neutral posture means positioning your body so it is aligned and balanced, regardless of whether you are sitting or standing.
Fetlock Injuries in Horses: Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Recovery
Fetlock Injuries in Horses: Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Recovery

February 09, 2024 3 min read

The fetlock is a hinge-like joint that connects the cannon bone and pastern in horses. It’s a crucial joint for horses’ mobility and performance. Unfortunately, this important joint is susceptible to various injuries that can range from mild to severe