Foot problems are important as they can cause issues with walking and increase the risk of falls.

Foot problems that a person with Parkinson’s can experience

Involuntary muscle contractions (dystonia) and toe-curling

Dystonia (involuntary muscle contractions) can occur in the feet. Your toes may curl and your ankle may turn inwards, this can be uncomfortable, cause spasms in the calf and may make it hard to fit into shoes.

Dystonia can be linked to medication not controlling your symptoms. Contact your doctor to see if changing your medicine regime may help.

A podiatrist or specialist may also be able to advise if toe splints may help you. Toe splints are silicone supports that support your toes when they are straight and give them something to grip onto.

Swelling (oedema)

Swelling can be common in Parkinson’s disease especially if you find it difficult to move. If you spend long periods sitting still and don’t do much exercise, fluid can build up in the feet and lower legs causing swelling.

Increasing the amount you move can reduce the swelling. It may also help to keep your legs raised when sitting or lying down, for example, raise your legs by using a foot stool.

A podiatrist can recommend exercises that can help, for example ankle rotations.

What other ways can you manage foot problems?

Choose the right footwear 

  • Make sure your shoes fit properly. Shoes that don’t fit correctly could increase your risk of falling
  • Choose shoes which are supportive, light weight and cushioned
  • A low wide heel is best for stability. Shoes which fasten over the top of the foot with Velcro or a strap hold the foot in place best
  • Avoid soles made of leather as this may increase risk of falls

Stretching and exercising 

Exercise can help many symptoms of Parkinson’s including problems with your feet, it can help reduce the stiffness and improve circulation. Your podiatrist or specialist can help suggest some simple exercises that maybe useful.

Hello Jon, welcome to MyPatchandMe™.

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