Simply put, high arches are the opposite of flat feet. But there’s more than that to say on this topic.
When people talk about high arches, they mean that the longitudinal arch of one or both feet contracts because of an imbalance in the muscle, tendon and ligament distribution. And that imbalance impacts how weight is distributed on the foot, leaving you with pain because some parts of your foot are having to bear more weight and pressure than they should.
Shoe insoles and arch supports can help by supporting the high arch as it does its best to support you.
Symptoms of High Arches
If you think your foot pain may be because of high arches, the first thing to do is to have a look at your foot as you stand. If the middle part of your foot makes no contact with the floor as you stand, your arches MAY be high. But you don’t necessarily have an abnormality.
Arches aren’t supposed to touch the floor. If they do, you have a condition called flat feet, which also causes pain. But arches shouldn’t be raised too high off the floor when you stand either. A podiatrist can tell you if your raised arches are the cause your pain issues.
Symptoms of unsupported high arches having to bear more strain than they should are:
- pain in the middle part of the foot,
- pain in the front of the foot or in a bunion area, and
- pain in the calf muscle, knee or lower back that can’t be explained by another sort of abnormality.
High arches are actually considerably less common than flat feet. If you have arches that are high enough to be considered abnormal, you may have trouble finding shoes that fit. You may also notice that your feet appear shorter than they should when you stand.
Dealing With High Arches
Your podiatrist will almost certainly recommend more support for your high arches. That includes choosing better shoes, adding an insole and possibly even adding an additional arch support along with your shoe insoles.
Only in the severest cases is surgery recommended to treat high arches. And then, complete success isn’t guaranteed. If the problem is caused by a nerve issue, however, a specialist will have to determine a way to correct or mitigate the problem.
If left untreated, high arches can result in chronic pain, problems walking and more.
But using shoe insoles and arch supports can keep the problem from becoming a disability that you will have to deal with for the rest of your life.
And once you get the right support in the right place, your feet may feel better than you ever thought possible — and you’ll be able to return to activities you may have ruled out as too painful and uncomfortable for you.
When something as simple as insoles and arch supports can reopen doors you thought were closed, that’s a remarkable thing.