Ankle pain from work boots is a common problem in workers. It has been seen across all types of industries and people in different professions. The severity and frequency of the pain vary, and it can range from mild to chronic in nature. Let find out the reasons and ways to get rid of pain in this article.
Table of Contents
- 6 Causes Leading Ankle Pain
- Diagnosis for Ankle Pain
- Get Rid of Ankle Pain from Boots
- Testing Boots before Buying
6 Causes Leading Ankle Pain
There are several causes leading to Ankle Pain from Work-Boots such as Achilles Tendonitis, Injuries, Arthritis, Bursitis, which lead to swelling or inflammation of the tendons or joints. Some other factors such as wearing uncomfortable work boots or inherent malformations like having flat feet can also lead to this condition too.”
Achilles tendinitis can occur due to overuse or repetitive stress and is located in the lower part of the leg. Achilles Tendonitis is caused by excessive activity, improper training, a sudden increase in activity level, having flat feet, or participating in sports like ballet. Other factors which lead to this condition are wearing uncomfortable shoes or boots and having poorly fitted work boots. However, wearing comfortable shoes which fit well will prevent this condition from occurring.
Ankle pain can be caused by a variety of injuries which could have also been caused by uncomfortable boots. Ankle sprains are usually caused when a person steps off an uneven surface and trips, bending the ankle inward and twisting it at the same time. If you have an existing injury or weakness in your ankles, then wearing uncomfortable boots will only add to your problems.
With this disease, the joints become swollen and sore, which leads to pain in the joints themselves. The main cause of arthritis is a chronic inflammation which leads to cell damage in the body. It is very common in the elderly, but it can also afflict people of all ages. Wearing uncomfortable boots can be a contributing factor as it will add to the stress and strain on the joints. It can also lead to inflammation and swelling in those who already suffer from arthritis. As there is no cure for arthritis, treating it will be done through medication. To ease the pain and inflammation caused by arthritis, medications such as over-the-counter pain relievers and anti-inflammatory drugs can be used.
Bursitis is a type of chronic inflammation, and it affects the fluid-filled sacs that cushion and separate tendons, muscles, and joints. It mainly occurs in the shoulder, hip, and elbows because those areas are very prone to injury or excessive pressure. Wearing uncomfortable boots can aggravate this condition causing pain or discomfort in those areas where bursitis has been diagnosed. Proper stretching and warm compresses may help to get rid of the pain.
Uncomfortable work boots can be a cause of Ankle Pain from Shoes. In this case, the shape and stiffness of the footwear will affect your foot posture and hence affect the alignment of your joints. Improper fit of footwear can result in stress on the joints and tendons.
Inherent malformations are present at birth, and they affect the structure of your body. There are certain skeletal abnormalities that can cause spurs to develop on your joints. This condition is called hallux valgus, which involves a deformity in the joint near your big toe joint that develops bone growths or spurs that point toward the other toes. The main cause of this condition is abnormal bone growth, and it can be inherited from a family member who has a similar condition just like it.
Diagnosis for Ankle Pain
Ankle Pain from Boots or Shoes can be diagnosed by your doctor if he conducts some tests. Your doctor will take an X-ray of your leg to rule out any fractures or other injuries. It might be referred to an orthopedist or an ankle specialist if the diagnosis is uncertain. The doctor might conduct magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the ankle if there is swelling present or you have sprained your ankle. You will also undergo several blood tests, including complete blood count (CBC), uric acid, and inflammatory markers such as C-reactive protein (CRP). You might also get X-rays of your foot to see whether there is any bursitis present.
Get Rid of Ankle Pain from Boots
Ankle pain from Footwear is not just a problem for the wearer. The boot itself can cause damage to your ankle, causing it to swell, leading to further discomfort. Sometimes you can feel relief within minutes by bending your knee and turning your foot towards the outside of the boot. But what about if it’s been days, weeks, or even months? For common causes, let try 6 tips below:
6 Common Tips for Releasing Ankle Pain
- Try adjusting your midsole. If your work boots are slipping around, try inserting a half-inch piece of Velcro into the toe to firmly grip your foot. You can also wrap small pieces of cloth around the entire boot to hold it in place.
- Buy some cushioned insoles. Purchase an extra-wide insert for your work boots, depending on the width of your shoes, and insert them between the hard base of your work boots and your foot so that they cushion both sides of the ankle joint.
- Consider wearing flip-flops or other open-toe shoes. These allow more air circulation so you won’t feel as much heat inside the boot, which could cause swelling and discomfort.
- Use a shoe stretcher. Insert the stretcher into your boots to break them in gradually and stretch out the shells.
- Stretch your ankles. Stand flat on the floor and knees bent at a 90-degree angle for 10 minutes. You can also try stretching the ankle by placing a towel around it and then twisting it clockwise for 20 seconds, followed by rotating it counterclockwise for 10 seconds. Repeat this process several times per day.
- Hire a professional if you have no luck or if your discomfort is intense. They can take a look and suggest ways to make your work boots more comfortable, such as changing the type of socks you wear or putting in additional inserts.
The treatment for this condition involves proper footwear and insoles, stretching the calf muscle to relieve pain, icing the area to reduce swelling, and rest when possible. A warm seat or heating pad can also be used to reduce swelling. Your doctor can prescribe certain types of injections or therapy to ease your discomfort. Pain medicines are often prescribed in cases where the acute pain is very high when it should be much less intense. Resting when possible will help because it will help you heal faster. The injections may work well, but they may not always help everyone get rid of painful symptoms.
Let try the following tips:
- Apply warm compresses on the affected area for about 10 minutes: Warm compresses help improve circulation and relieve swelling and pain in the affected areas. Doing it from 4 to 5 times a day for about 10 minutes is recommended. To prepare a warm compress, soak a clean washcloth in warm water and wring it out till it is moist but not dripping wet. Then place it over the affected area and cover it with a towel or another cloth to trap in the heat.
- Stretch your arms backward: Stretch your arms backward through their full range of motion; make sure you feel no pain or discomfort while stretching out your arms and shoulders.
- Strengthen your leg muscles (or reduce inflammation if it is chronic): Strengthen the leg muscles to get more blood flow to the area helping to bring down swelling and relieve pain.
- Warm up your feet: Warm up your feet by doing simple exercises such as toe-touches, heel lifts, etc.
- Exercises for bursitis in joints in shoulders, hips, or elbows- this involves increasing flexibility of that region in order to increase range of motion for that region in an attempt to alleviate pain caused by bursitis.
People with these problems may benefit from certain exercises which specifically target the joints which are not moving properly. These exercises include:
- Use a wall or other object to balance while standing on your feet: This exercise is usually performed with shoes on due to the danger of falling if you were to remove shoes. It helps to improve strength, stability, and balance in the ankle joints.
- Walks on uneven ground: Walking or running on the uneven ground allows you to work all of the joints in your feet that may have fallen out of alignment due to flatfoot, fallen arches, etc.; however, advanced runners could try running upstairs at a 90-degree angle instead of straight up. This exercise may be more useful to people with flat feet.
- Raised heels: Footcare products such as heel support inserts and orthotics can help alleviate pain and discomfort caused by fallen arches which occur when a shoe is too low, or your toes press against the front of the shoe.
- Work with a physical therapist or podiatrist so special exercises can be created to improve motion in your ankle joints, improve balance and strength in your ankles, etc.
Testing Boots before Buying
Ankle pain from work boots is usually caused by improper boot size and/or inadequate padding inside the boot.
Test for Length
To get the most comfortable fit, shop in a shoe store where you can try on work boots. Check your Work Boots to make sure they fit by doing this:
- Measure from the top of your heel to the top of your longest toe with a ruler or tape measure.
- Compare these measurements with the size chart in Toe-Width and Length brochure
- If you need to make any adjustments, try on different sizes until you find one that fits comfortably and supports your feet properly.
- Make sure there is about a thumb’s-width of space between the top of the boot and your shin bone. Properly fitting work boots will not restrict blood flow; they will not cut into any part of your leg, and they will provide you with adequate ankle support.
See some products of Orthopedic Work Boots.
Test for the Fit of Work Boots
- Laces should keep your foot comfortably in place.
- The top of the boot should rest at your ankle bone.
- The toe cap should be on the outside of your foot, over the big toe, not on top of it or to either side.
- The heel of the boot should be at your anklebone and not resting on your toes.
- Your foot should be pushed far enough into the toe box so that the tops of your toes don’t press against it when you walk.
- The ankle should move approximately 1/2 inch up and down within the boot.
- The ankle bone (humerus) should not move through the entire arc of motion in your foot when you walk or stand without shifting in or out of the boot.
See also: Most Popular Work Boot Brands
Using Test Pads
- Fingers should not feel any hard or sharp surfaces inside the boot, such as nails or splints.
- The pad should be as close as possible to your anklebone without pressing into it.
- The pad should not dig into your skin, but if you have any soreness, then you have too much padding in the boot
- The pad should be about 1/2 inch from the top of the boot
- The boot should flex enough so that your toes are not pressing against the top of the boot.
Make Sure the Laces Keep Your Foot Comfortably in Place.
The laces should have a wide, open loop. If you have to stand with your foot hooked through the top of the boot, it is too small. The toe cap should be on the outside of your foot, over the big toe, not on top of it or to either side:
In most boots, there is a piece of leather or similar material that is attached to the top of the boot and covers over most or all of each toe. This piece can be as much as 3/4 inch thick. If you wear regular socks, this toe material should not rest on the top of your toes; it should rest on the outside of your toes, over them. If there is no such material (which is common in Wellington-style boots), then the top of the toe box should be no higher than 1/4 inch above the tip of your big toe.
Try Work Boots on at the End of the Day.
Try on new work boots at home late in the day or in the evening when your feet are more relaxed, swelling is down, and you might be closer to what you would be if you were wearing no shoes at all.
- Be sure to remove wool or cotton socks so that it allows for proper air circulation.
- Putting on new boots is better done without socks so that you get an accurate impression of how they fit.
- Wear them for 15 minutes before you decide whether or not they are comfortable.
Why do my work boots hurt my ankles?
If you wear steel-toe boots for work, there’s a chance these shoes could be causing pain in your ankles. The steel toe can cause feet to overwork, tightening the muscles in the feet. When you walk with these boots for long periods of time, this can cause extra pressure on your feet and ankles, which will eventually lead to problems like plantar fasciitis or Achilles tendonitis.
Are boots bad for your ankles?
If you wear steel-toe boots for work, there’s a chance these shoes could be causing pain in your ankles. Wearing shoes with steel toes can be a very risky decision if you suffer from chronic foot or ankle problems. It can also cause your feet to become too tired and sore to continue walking.
Can steel toe boots cause ankle problems?
When you spend all day wearing the steel-toe cap boots, it can put too much stress on the bones. This will also put extra weight on foot, which bends down into that heel bone that’s right below where your tendon enters at the back of your ankle. It is the Achilles tendon that runs from your heel to your calf. This problem can lead to severe pain and even possible rupturing of the tendon.
Can ankle pain be caused by shoes?
Because of all the added weight in your feet when you wear boots, it is likely that they will cause some type of foot or ankle problems. This is because there’s too much pressure being put on certain areas in your feet and ankles when you wear steel-toe boots. Wearing shoes with steel toes can be a very risky decision if you suffer from chronic foot or ankle problems. It can also cause your feet to become too tired and sore to continue walking.