Gout is a type of arthritis that causes uric acid crystals to accumulate near the joints, which can then result in painful swelling and inflammation in these areas.

Whilst gout can affect many different joints, it often emerges in the heels and the big toes. If you have developed gout-related heel pain, here are some of the ways that a podiatrist may be able to help you with this issue.

They can enable you to remain mobile by providing orthotic inserts

Even when a gout-riddled foot is rested on a cushion, with no pressure whatsoever being placed on it, it can still feel very painful. However, when you place your body weight on a heel that is swollen and sore as a result of this condition, it can result in you experiencing excruciating pain. If you want to remain mobile without having to rely on crutches to keep the weight off your affected heel, you should discuss this issue with a podiatrist.

The reason for this is as follows; a podiatrist can put special orthotic inserts into your shoes, which will change the position of your feet inside the footwear. This change in position will help to redistribute the pressure that your body weight would normally place on your heel onto other areas of your foot. This, in turn, should make it easier for you to walk without experiencing excessive heel pain.

If you experience frequent gout flare-ups, the podiatrist may also recommend that you change your footwear; for example, they may recommend that you opt for wide-fitting shoes that will not press against your heel when you walk.

They can minimise the risk of your condition causing complications

The treatments provided by a podiatrist could help you to avoid experiencing some of the complications of this condition.

For example, if you suffer from frequent gout flare-ups in your heel, and the joint remains chronically inflamed, it could eventually become permanently deformed. If this happens, you may struggle to walk or run as quickly and easily as you once did and you may end up having to use crutches or another type of mobility aid.

However, you could potentially avoid this if you go to your podiatrist at the first sign of a flare-up, as they will be able to provide you with anti-inflammatory medication and apply ice packs to the heel, both of which will quickly reduce the levels of inflammation in the joint before this inflammation causes serious damage.

Learn more about heel pain from a podiatrist.