If you suffer from chronic lower back pain, look down at your feet to see the possible cause. Your flat feet may be putting stress on your lower back so it aches constantly. Also called fallen arches, your flat feet affect the alignment of your lower body. A foot doctor at a clinic like http://www.westmorelandfootdoctor.com can make an assessment of the impact of your feet on your back and make recommendations that will reduce your back pain. Here is how your feet are giving you a pain in the back and how that can be treated.
An Alignment Problem
The arch in your feet act as a shock absorber each time you step down. This prevents the force of each step from being sent up your legs and into your back. The arch also holds your foot in the right position to maintain alignment of the ankles, knees and hips. When you lose the arch, you lose that shock absorber effect and you feel the stress in your lower back. Your foot also takes on a new position which places the ankles, knees and hips out of alignment. This puts more stress on your back and causes the persistent lower back pain.
Common Causes of Fallen Arches
A family history of fallen arches means that the muscles and tendons in your feet may naturally be too weak to hold the arch in place. Some other causes of flat feet that you are in control of include:
- injury to the muscles and tendons that hold the arch in place.
- frequent overstretching of those muscles and tendons through physical activity.
- excess weight gain that puts additional stress on the muscles and tendons in your feet.
Treating Your Flat Feet and Reducing Your Back Pain
When the podiatrist is successful at treating your fallen arches, your lower body is put back into alignment, removing the stress from your lower back. Your doctor will attempt several non-invasive options first. If these don't give you consistent relief, then surgery is an option.
The non-invasive approaches include:
- custom orthotics worn in your shoes to hold your feet in a more natural position to give you some temporary relief.
- physical therapy that strengthens the muscles in your feet so they can support your arches better.
- ankle supports to hold your foot in the proper position relative to the knees and hips.
Surgical treatment of your flat feet includes:
- fusing bones together in your foot to create an artificial arch.
- repositioning of the tendons so they have more leverage to hold your arch in place.
When your feet have assumed their natural position, stress is removed from the ankles, knees and hips and your back will be less painful.