I took a phone call from a runner the other day who described a shooting pain right behind his third and fourth toes after running a good 10+ miles. Not being a doctor, I advised him to seek proper medical advice; however, the foot pain condition sounded like Morton's neuroma. Along with assessing his shoes, he chose a great orthotic arch support insert for men -the Superfeet Orange Premium Insoles.
Morton's neuroma can cause cramping , numbness, and/or tingling in the forefoot.The forefoot is the pad right behind the toes, sometimes referred to as the 'ball of foot.' This condition can create a burning, sharp pain (like needles), and an inflammation (or swelling/small lump) of a nerve typically at the ball of the foot, between the third and fourth toe of the feet.
Our runner chose the Superfeet Orange Premium Insoles (for men) over the more popular Superfeet Green Premium Insoles due to its extra padding in the forefoot. The Superfeet Berry Premium Insole is an excellent choice for women.
Typically Morton's neuroma can be caused by tight shoes (particularly in the toe-box), pointed shoes, and/or high-heels in addition to heavy forefoot pressure.
The foot condition is caused by an abnormal foot function from the foot bones squeezing a nerve between the 3rd and 4th toes (or also known as metatarsal heads). One will typically begin to feel the foot pain after significant periods of walking, running, standing, sprinting, jogging, cycling, skating and/or any other physical activity that puts undue pressure on the forefoot pad of the foot.
For ladies seeking additional comfort and support in their high heels, a traditional shoe insole isn't practical. Our Apara Gel Inserts for high heels and casual-dress shoes fit the bill. They come in individual heel and arch support inserts, as well as, the forefoot pad style for Morton's neuroma.
For men, women, and children that prefer a nice leather shoe insert for their casual and dress shoes, the Pedag Leather Orthotic Arch Support Shoe Insoles (Viva, Viva-Mini, and Comfort) are ideal. The Powerstep Pinnacle Plus Insoles offer excellent support for everyday athletic shoes.
When treating Morton's Neuroma, it is imperative to assess your footwear. You need a shoe that is both wide and tall in the toe area (otherwise known as the toe box). Ideally, put off wearing high-heels or tight fitting shoes. Use a good quality orthotic shoe insert with a metatarsal pad. The metatarsal pad is located behind ball of the foot to relieve pressure and the pain associated with the neuroma. Reduce activities, take an anti-inflammatory medicine, and massage the foot to relax the muscles around the affected nerve(s). If the pain persists, see your doctor. Steroid shots, a medical device that separates the toes, and/or surgery are the next levels of treatment.
As for our runner using the Superfeet Orange insoles, the pain has receded after choosing larger shoes, using the orthotic shoe insole, and temporarily cutting back on a rigorous running schedule.