Humans are not symmetrical. We have a tendency to use one limb in a more dominant way than the other. Just as you may be right or left handed, you also have a dominant foot that will be used more and takes more pressure through your daily activity, and especially during running.
There are other factors that can cause pain, and even problems like bunions and hammertoes, occur on one foot and not the other. The most common issue that causes this is when one leg is longer than the other. It happens more often than you'd think! Because of the leg length difference, your feet work differently to compensate for the discrepancy. We often use a custom orthotic to correct for the difference in length and stabilize the compensation. This managed the foot pain and also will address the knee, hip, and back pain that also can result from the leg length difference.
Another cause of unilateral pain is related to the running surface. Many streets, and especially theses in Houston, are banked to allow for drainage. When you run on the side of the road, you end up with one foot higher than another, essentially creating a leg length difference. A simple fix for this is a couple of steps to the center of the road....but don't get hit by a car!!
If you are unsure what is causing the pain or problem in your foot or ankle, contact Tanglewood Foot Specialists for a comprehensive evaluation. Dr. Andrew Schneider will evaluate your mechanics, determine where there is instability, and discuss the best solution with you.