I often hear daily that “I have bad, horrible, flat, or high arch feet.” I have even had some say “I have no pain, so I have good feet.” Do you really know if your feet are “Good?” In order to really know, start by inspecting each foot. Feet will exhibit many early findings of malfunctioning that can take you from good to bad-even without pain.
Begin inspection by looking at the alignment of your toes. Are they straight or crooked and curled like a hammertoe or hallux valgus (big toe deviating outward)?
Big Toe Joint
Faulty functioning of this joint is associated with many pains and pathologies from the foot to the back. Is it enlarged? Is a bunion bump forming not only on the side but also the top of the joint?
Most importantly with this joint, is it bending properly or stiffening with time? Is there a boney bump up the 1st metatarsal base (middle top inside)? This indicates the big toe joint is not bending when it needs to bend.
Are there callouses? Especially under the 2nd toe ball area of the foot or alongside the big toe. Callouses are not normal. A callous is your skins response to abnormal increased pressure and shearing forces.
Of course, it is good to not be hurting. However, lack of pain is not an indication of good feet.
Some are blessed with “good feet”, others are not. If not, there is usually help for you. Most importantly, do not rely on the lack of pain as an indicator.
David J. Sables, D.P.M., C.Ped