First, let me lead off by saying that I have been diagnosed with Peripheral Neuopathy, so I am rather numb in that area to start with.
But, when I walk at all, eventually I'll get a feeling like I am stepping on a tiny glass fragment on the center ball of my toes, and then, just like clockwork, it swells up - not like a balloon, but enough to be quite uncomfortable and often painful. Its all in the center of the ball of my toes, up through the back of my big and 2nd toe skin juncture (which hurts like hell) and on top the bones that lead to my big and 2nd toe.
It also happens on both feet, although not until the other gets the "trigger" also which may happen the same walk or the next time I walk. The swelling usually causes sharp shooting pains that go the length of the top of my foot - unlike the very localized neuropathic stabbing pains (which is well treated by Lyrica).
It makes it very difficult to walk, as I end up walking on the outside of my feet (to keep it from getting worse), and then my feet and ankles get very tired and sore until I can barely walk at all. Sometimes I use a cane, but it doesn't help much - especially if both feet are swollen.
Often it even happens when the ball of my foot gets pressed against my shoe while simply sitting at my desk. And usually happens while applying pressure to the break and gas pedal when driving.
My only salvation has been memory foam. At work, I take off my shoes and rest them on a memory foam pillow. At home I walk around in memory foam slippers (which I can even do comfortably when they are swollen, and they even cause the swelling to go down). And yesterday my wife bought me memory foam inserts which when placed on top of my liquid filled inserts seem to maybe be working (fingers crossed).
I went to my Dr on Friday, and he said it was my diabetes and neouropathy, so he upped my Lyrica dose (which I'm glad he did anyway, because the neuropathic burn is finally diminished). I thought that was working great, cause one foot stopped swelling, and on Sunday evening, I was even walking around with no swelling at all. But, on Monday the more sensitve foot blew up again while walking around at work. And on Tuesday, my sensitive foot blew up while walking around and the other blew up while driving.
On Wednesday, I was quite pleased with the additional support of the memory foam inserts, as I had no swelling in the one foot and very little in the other. That day (today) I got to my long antisipated first Podiatrist appt.
He wouldn't let me get a word in edgewise. He even said, "I don't consider anything swelling unless its like this!", and he made a large oval with fingers and thumbs pressed together (which my feet looked like once 2 years ago after a working a trade show). And that all I had was an arthritis that pushes on the muscle and skin tissue and irritates it a little - and told me that these arch support insoles would all but cause it to go away as long as I wore them. Then he wisked me out of my office not even hearing 1/32 of what I wanted to tell him about.