The arch of your foot is that slightly curved area between your heel and the ball of your foot. Some people have unusually high arches, which can lead to a range of problems, from occasional pain to permanent structural changes. The severity of paindepends on how high your arch is and whether it’s the result of an underlying condition. Most of these problems are related to the ways that high arches impact how you walk and stand.

Problems linked to high arches:

Plantar fasciitis – People with high arches are prone to developing plantar fasciitis. This refers to inflammation of the plantar fascia, which is the band of ligament that connects your heel to your toes and supports your arches.The pain usually affects the heel, but some people experience it along the bottom of the entire foot or along the arch. It’s often worse when you take your first steps after getting up, and improves the more you move.The pain is described as a stabbing or burning and can worsen after standing or sitting for long periods.

MetatarsalgiaHigh arches are a common cause of metatarsalgia. This is a painful inflammation of the ball of the foot. Metatarsalgia usually improves when you rest and worsens during standing, walking, or exercising. Flexing your foot can also worsen your pain.The pain can worsen over time and lead to limping and pain in other parts of your body, such as your lower back and hips.

Common symptoms of metatarsalgia include:

  • sharp or shooting pain in the ball of your foot
  • aching or burning pain
  • tingling or numbness in your toes
  • the feeling of a pebble in your shoe

Claw toes – refers to toes that take on a claw-like position and dig down into the soles of your shoes. It often affects the four smaller toes.The joints of the affected toes buckle unusually, causing them to curl downward. You may develop painful calluses on the ball of the foot and corns over the top of your toes as a result of the way your feet sit in your shoes. The deformity can also cause foot pain, affect your gait, and make shoes feel tighter.

Hammertoeis deformity that affects the second, third, or fourth toes. It results in the toe bending at the middle joint, which creates a hammer- or Z-shaped appearance.At first, the affected toe is flexible. But over time, it can become rigid and require surgery.Hammertoe can cause pain in the toes and feet, making it difficult to find comfortable shoes.

Foot and ankle instability – When you have high arches, one or both heels are usually tilted toward the middle of your body. This causes foot and ankle instability, which can cause pain and increase your risk of ankle sprains.