Metatarsalgia is a condition marked by pain and inflammation in the ball of your foot. It often occurs in the metatarsal heads - where the three middle toes meet the ball of the foot. It is a common problem which can affect the bones and joints of the metatarsals.
You may experience metatarsalgia if you're physically active and you participate in activities that involve running and jumping. Or, you may develop metatarsalgia by wearing ill-fitting shoes. There are other causes as well.
Although generally not serious, metatarsalgia can sideline you. Fortunately, conservative treatments, such as ice and rest, can often relieve metatarsalgia symptoms. And proper footwear, along with shock-absorbing insoles or arch supports, may be all you need to prevent or minimize future problems with metatarsalgia.
Symptoms of pain can range from mild to severe, and usually become more noticeable and unpleasant when the individual stands or moves. Some describe it as a burning sensation, while others complain of shooting pain, tingling or numbness in their toes. "It is like walking on pebbles."