How do I know if I have sesamoiditis?
If you have pain on the underside of the 1st metatarsophalangeal joint (big toe joint), you likely have some form of sesamoiditis. Those with sesamoiditis rarely have pain in other areas of the big toe joint, pain is exclusively on the plantar aspect of the foot. If you have generalised joint swelling and pain on the top side of the big toe joint, you may have other conditions like 1st metatarsophalangeal osteoarthritis, synovitis, or gout.
What sesamoiditis treatment can I try at home?
- Avoiding barefoot, especially on tiles or timber floors.
- Avoiding high heels
- Protecting the forefoot with footwear that has significant cushioning (e.g. well cushioned running shoes with a high stack height and forefoot rocker design).
- Self-massage in the arch of the foot using a tennis ball or similar (not directly on the painful part).
- Seated toe flexor and intrinsic foot exercises
- Avoiding exacerbating activities or exercises. Often walking can be more irritating for sesamoiditis than running, so taking note of steps per day with a wearable device is very helpful. Monitor steps and symptoms, and reduce steps as much as practical to get symptoms stable or improving.