Posts for tag: Heel Pain
Heel pain is a common foot problem that podiatrists often treat. Knowing the cause of your pain is important in determining the most effective treatment method. Even if the pain seems minor, it’s amazing how much it can affect your whole body, making it difficult to get out of bed let alone go on your regular run. If you are struggling with heel pain you might be dealing with a condition known as plantar fasciitis.
What is plantar fasciitis?
The source of your pain may originate in the plantar fascia, a tough band of connective tissue that connects your toes to your feet. If the fascia becomes inflamed, you may feel pain in your heel. Of course, everything from wearing high heels to long runs can actually irritate and cause inflammation within the plantar fascia. When this happens this is known as plantar fasciitis. This condition is usually the result of overuse and repeated stress rather than an injury.
What are the symptoms of plantar fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis causes heel pain that originates at the bottom of the heel below the heel bone. The pain may spread to the arches of the feet and may also be accompanied by stiffness. These symptoms are often exacerbated first thing in the morning or after long bouts of sitting or standing. Sometimes, light activity and exercise can momentarily lessen the pain.
How is plantar fasciitis treated?
If you know that you have plantar fasciitis (perhaps you’ve had it before) then you know it’s important to rest, avoid physical activity, and take over-the-counter pain relievers. Of course, if you’ve never experienced heel pain before it’s important to see a podiatrist to find out whether it’s plantar fasciitis or another condition such as heel spurs or Achilles tendonitis. A thorough evaluation from a medical professional is often necessary, especially if this is the first time dealing with heel pain.
Your podiatrist can also show you stretching and strengthening exercises that you can perform to help stretch the plantar fascia to reduce pain and discomfort. Some patients also choose to wear a night splint to reduce morning stiffness and arch pain.
If your symptoms aren’t being alleviated through conservative treatment methods or if you are experiencing chronic heel pain your podiatrist may recommend surgery.
If you are dealing with stubborn and painful heels turn to a podiatrist for a consultation.
Achilles tendonitis doesn't just affect athletes. In fact, you can develop the painful condition even if you don't run, play basketball or participate in other types of sports. No matter what the cause of your tendon pain, the podiatrists at Idaho Foot & Ankle Associates in Boise, Nampa/Caldwell, and Meridian, ID, offer treatments that will help get you back on your feet.
What causes Achilles tendonitis?
Achilles tendonitis occur when the long thin tendon at the back of your heel becomes irritated and inflamed. The tendon connects your heel bone to the muscles in your calf and allows you to stand on your tiptoes and push off when you run, walk or jump.
The condition can be caused by:
- The Shoes You Wear: Wearing shoes that don't adequately support or cushion your feet and arches may increase your risk of Achilles tendonitis. Do you wear high heels often? Wearing the shoes regularly can shorten your tendon, making it more likely that you'll develop tendonitis.
- Your Sex: Men develop Achilles tendonitis more often than women.
- Your Age: The Achilles tendon naturally weakens as you get older. Even if you've been active all of your life and stretch before activity, you can still develop the condition.
- Your Arches: Flat foot places considerable stress on your muscles and tendons and may eventually cause Achilles tendonitis.
- Your Favorite Sports and Activities: People who play or participate in football, running, baseball, dance, softball, tennis, volleyball, gymnastics, or other activities that require quick starts and stops are at risk of Achilles tendonitis.
- Your Running Routine: Running uphill can strain your tendon and cause painful inflammation.
- Your Medical Conditions: You may be at increased risk of Achilles tendonitis if you have psoriasis or high blood pressure or your Boise, Nampa/Caldwell, or Meridian podiatrist prescribes a type of antibiotics called fluoroquinolones.
- Your Exercise Routine: Stretching before exercise can help you avoid Achilles tendonitis and is particularly important if your calf muscles tend to be tight. Other workout factors that may put you at risk include suddenly increasing the length or duration of your workout or only working out or playing sports occasionally.
- Your Weight: Carrying extra pounds strains your tendons. Losing weight is a simple way to avoid tendonitis.
Are you tired of living with Achilles tendonitis pain? Schedule an appointment with the podiatrists at Idaho Foot & Ankle Associates by calling (208) 327-0627 for the Boise, ID, office, (208) 463-1660 for the Nampa/Caldwell office, or (208) 888-9876 for the Meridian office.
Understanding Heel Pain with Help from Your Podiatrist
- Wear shoes that fit well
- Wear proper shoes for each activity
- Do not wear shoes with excessive wear on heels or soles
- Prepare properly before exercising by stretching and warming up
- Pace yourself when you participate in athletic activities
- Don’t underestimate your body’s need for rest and good nutrition
- Lose excess weight
Find out what might be going on to cause your heel pain and how to treat it.
Heel pain is a common complaint that our Boise, Nampa/Caldwell, and Meridan, ID, podiatrists can help treat. Of course, it’s particularly common for most runners and athletes to experience heel pain at some point during their lifetime. So, what could be causing your symptoms and when does it a warrant a trip to see a doctor?
The specific location of your heel pain will give us some insight into what might be going on. For example, if the pain is under the heel then chances are good that your heel pain is the result of an inflammatory problem known as plantar fasciitis. This is usually the most common cause of heel pain. If the pain is above the heel bone or on the back of the heel then you could have Achilles tendinitis.
Both of these conditions usually appear gradually over time rather than as a result of an injury. You may barely notice these symptoms at first until they progress. Both conditions are the result of overuse, which is why both conditions are common in athletes. If you have suddenly increased the intensity or duration of your workout then you may put yourself at an increased risk for developing this problem.
When heel pain occurs it’s up to you to stay off your feet as much as possible and to take it easy. If you continue to run or workout you won’t give the inflamed tissue ample time to heal. The best thing you can do is to avoid high-impact activities until the pain has completely subsided.
Along with heel pain, it’s not uncommon to experience stiffness as well, particularly first thing in the morning when getting out of bed. This is usually when foot pain is at its worse, too. If you have Achilles tendinitis, these symptoms may be exacerbated after climbing stairs or standing for long periods of time. With plantar fasciitis you may be lulled into a false sense of security by not experiencing pain during your normal workout; however, the aching or stabbing pain often appears shortly after.
Treating Heel Pain
While plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendinitis are the two most common causes of heel pain, they aren’t the only causes. This is why you should visit our Boise, Nampa/Caldwell, and Meridan, ID, foot doctor if you experiencing foot pain, especially for the first time. Patients who have diabetes or nerve damage in their feet should immediately seek care from a foot specialist.
You can ask your podiatrist about certain foot stretches you can do every day to help reduce stiffness and pain while improving mobility.
We may also recommend:
- Physical therapy
- Night Splints
- Steroid Injections
- Surgery (in persistent cases)
Heel pain isn’t something that you can treat by yourself. If you are dealing with sudden, severe or persistent foot problems then it’s time to turn to the foot care specialists at Idaho Foot & Ankle Associates in Boise, Nampa/Caldwell, and Meridan, ID. Call us today to learn more about how we can help you.
Have you been experiencing any heel pain or bothersome tenderness without any obvious cause? Although heel spurs themselves sometimes do not cause acute discomfort, they are frequently associated with the painful inflammation known as plantar fasciitis, a condition commonly described as feeling like a knife is wrenching through your foot. Read below for more information on the typical causes, symptoms, and treatments of heel spurs.
What is a Heel Spur?
A heel spur is often the result of overstraining foot muscles and ligaments, overstretching the plantar fascia (the thick band of tissue that connects the heel bone to the toes), and repeatedly tearing the heel bone membrane. From these actions arises a calcium deposit on the underside of the heel bone. Risk factor for developing the condition include:
Possessing any walking gait abnormalities
Regularly running or jogging on hard surfaces
Wearing poorly fitted or overly worn shoes
Wearing shoes that lack arch support
Being excessively overweight or obese
What are The Symptoms?
Heel spurs do not carry many symptoms by themselves. However, they are often related to other afflictions, most typically plantar fasciitis. The most common sign of this combo of conditions is a feeling of chronic pain along the bottom or back of the heel, especially during periods of walking, running, or jogging. If you are experiencing this recurring inflammation, it is a good idea to visit your local podiatrist's office and inquire about undergoing an x-ray or ultrasound examination of the foot.
What are the Treatment Options?
The solutions to heel spurs are generally centered around decreasing inflammation and avoiding re-injury. They include:
Applying ice on the inflammation
Performing stretch exercises
Wearing orthotic devices or shoe inserts to relieve pressure off of the spur
Taking anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen to relieve pain
In extreme cases, surgery can be performed on chronically inflamed spurs
If you are dealing with symptoms of heel spurs or pain in your feet, turn to a podiatrist so that we can get you back on your feet. Don't ignore your pain.