Burning feet is a common foot complaint among many groups, most commonly in the over 50's and in diabetics who generally experience these sensations at night time. There are many different causes of this condition and whilst some may also encounter redness and swelling, often there is no physical sign of this condition.
Causes In many cases the cause is simply due to the fact that when our core temperature is warmer (such as in summer or in bed at night), our body allows more blood to flow down to our feet than it often does when its colder. This increase in blood flow can lead to our feet feeling warmer than we are comfortable with and warmer than what we are used to and is more common in women, especially during menopause.
Other causes may include:
Dampness, together with friction, leads to the sensation of burning, so its important to buy shoes that let perspiration evaporate.
Many feet just ache and burn at the end of a long day, especially in those who are on their feet all day or are overweight (mechanical overload)
Pregnancy. The hormones and changes in blood volume together with increased weight on the feet can add together to create heat in the feet.
Inappropriate socks. Wear socks made of cotton rather than synthetic fabrics.
Athletes foot can sometimes spread to cause burning sensation on the sole of the foot.
Allergic reaction or sensitivity to shoe material or socks.
Alcohol is also contributing factor. Long term use can affect the nervous activity of the feet.
Neuropathy such as that which occurs with Diabetes, chronic alcoholism, vitamin deficiencies (usually B) and heavy metal poisoning
Neuroma. A trapped nerve can lead to a hot burning sensation such as in Mortons Neuroma or tarsal tunnel syndrome.
Cycling. "Hot foot" is the term given by cyclists to describe a number of conditions of the foot - the most common condition being Mortons Neuroma. The heat created from the friction and pressure on the ball of the foot during cycling creates a number of conditions such as neuromas, calluses, metatarsal-phalangeal joint capsulitis, plantar plate irritations and stress reactions or stress fractures in the metatarsal shafts. These conditions together with the increased blood flow during exercise, compressive pressure from tights cleated shoes, and constant pivoting pressures can all add together to create what we know as "hot foot,"
Gout can cause a burning sensation on the side of the foot and heat due to inflammation.