A stress fracture is a serious medical condition; it is really important that you get the treatment that you need in order to make a full recovery. If you put this off, it can prolong recovery time and cause further damage. Of course we understand that a lot of people who are reading this may have just started feeling pain in their feet and are trying to find out the symptoms of a stress fracture to see whether they should go to the doctor or not.
To understand a stress fracture and the symptoms, we need to start by looking at the causes. Many conditions can affect the foot and many of these conditions have the same symptoms. Depending on what caused the pain in your foot, it can lean to one injury over another, which is why doctors ask you what happened when you go and see them. Let’s find out about the possible causes of a stress fracture to learn more.
The common causes of stress fractures in the foot
Stress fractures happen over a long period; they are not like a fracture that occurs after an accident. The most likely causes are either increasing the intensity or amount that you are exercising. For example, if you suddenly increase the distance that you are running, this can cause a stress fracture.
The reason for this is because bone adapts slowly to increased pressure. This happens by remodelling the bone. This is a normal process that will speed up when the load increases. However, bones that are subjected to a lot of force too quickly, do not have enough time to remodel and this causes hairline cracks to form which are stress fractures.
The symptoms of a stress fracture in the foot
At first, you probably won’t notice much when you have a stress fracture. The pain usually develops gradually and gets worse with time. You may notice swelling around the area of pain. You might also feel some tenderness in the particular spot that will decrease when you rest.
If your pain doesn’t ease with rest or becomes really severe, make an appointment with your GP or head straight to a podiatrist. Each one will first ask you a couple of questions like how you hurt yourself, as we mentioned above. They will examine your foot and possibly send you for further tests like x-rays. After this, they will offer you the treatment that is right for you. We won’t be going into the treatment of stress fractures here as depending on your age and general health; the treatments may vary.
Hopefully, this has helped you understand the symptoms of a stress fracture in the foot, and to determine whether you may have one or not. To find out more about common conditions that cause pain in the foot, please explore our blog further. We have plenty of articles on here that will help you find the answer to your foot related questions.