Hoping to get some advice on the pain I've been having in the arch of my left foot:
It started about a month and a half, maybe two months ago. There is a specific, localized pain in the arch of my left foot, right at the back of the arch (immediately in front of my heel) on the bottom of the foot. It feels like a stabbing type of pain. I work as a bartender/waitress, and therefore am on my feet for 45-50 hours a week for work, plus whenever I'm on the go during my time off. When I waitress, I wear a skirt with dress flats, which have no support for 7-10 hours on a cement floor. The pain started after a longer week of work (60-ish hours with a 10:30 AM-2:00 AM shift involved). It tends to hurt more after resting - when I get up in the morning, after a long car ride, and if I'm able to get a break to sit down and eat at work. It gets better as I'm on my feet for longer, but it seems that the longer I'm on my feet, the more it hurts once I do rest.
I'm 26, female, and my feet have always gotten sore easily. Just looking at my body/foot structure, I'd imagine that my feet would have a rough time. I'm a little overweight (should lose about 15-20 pounds), but am the classic "pear shape" with nearly all of my extra weight carried in the lower half of my body. My feet themselves, on the other hand, are very slim and bony. All of my toes except for the big toes are TINY (they literally look like a child's). I have a high arch - when I bought some heels a couple weeks ago, the strap was tight even on the loosest hole, even though my feet are slim and narrow - the heel height just pushed my arch up at an angle that the strap was tight across the bone. I'd imagine that heavier legs coupled with small, high-arched feet would put some stress on the poor things!
Previous injuries: I had stress fractures about 10 years ago in high school winterguard (who would have thought that dancing and jumping on hard gym floors barefoot wouldn't be a good idea... seriously), and grade 2 ankle sprain (left) a couple years ago.
I'm wondering where to go from here. The pain doesn't keep me from work (as it gets better as I work), but I don't want it to get worse, and it's very annoying. I don't currently have health insurance, so I don't want to get checked out just for them to tell me there's nothing I can do besides stay off my feet, which isn't an option. I read on some plantar fasciitis sites about sleeping with a boot on. Last night I tried sleeping in the ankle brace that I had from my sprain, but that didn't seem to keep the flexed position in my foot, and did nothing save for rub on the back of my heel.
Just looking for some opinions... should I be concerned, what (if anything) could make it better, etc.
I'm not a doctor, but I used to bartend, so I might be able to offer some advice. I would get similar pain to you, only mine would be localized in the calf, as well as the arch of my foot. It would be fine the entire time I was working, and then when I'd get home and try and sleep--BOOM--it would flare up.
A lot of people I talked to said it was a potassium or a calcium thing. Try eating a banana for potassium before you go to work, or right after and see if that helps. If you like bananas that is. A multivitamin or just straight calcium might help as well.
I'd also say look into getting a pair of gel inserts. Scholl's makes really good ones and you can get ones for your whole foot, the arch, or just the heel. That might help relieve some of the stress while you are working.