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Mountain West Foot & Ankle Institute Mountain West Foot & Ankle Institute
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Why Are High Arches Painful?

Most people know that flat feet can be a problem, but are less aware of the less common condition of high arches.  It may be a good thing to have a well-developed arch, but an arch that is too high can cause pain and problems.

When the arch is too high, it means there are structural abnormalities in the foot.  Bone positions may be off and bunions, hammer toes and corns are much more likely to occur.  One of the biggest problems with high arches is shock absorbtion.  The high arch poorly distributes the shock of the foot hitting the ground and causes increased stress to the ball of the foot and the heel.  This can lead to pain, bone and tendon injury.  This becomes even more of a problem when barefoot, in flip flops or other flat shoes.  Even common running shoes usually fail to provide necessary support to a high arch (they are usually designed for the average foot).  That's why specialized orthotics are so important for someone with high arches.  As you recieve better support, much of the pain to the arch will improve or even resolve.

Brandt R Gibson, DPM
Podiatrist, Neuropathy Doctor, Father of 11 and Founder of Mountain West Foot & Ankle Institute