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.
Heel pain—it’s more common than you may think, and it should never be ignored. After all, untreated heel pain can get much worse, making it difficult to even stand and walk around. Fortunately, your podiatrist can help with the issue. Here at Norridge Foot Clinic in Norridge, IL, Dr. Laura J. Pickard offers a wide variety of footcare services, including effective treatments for heel pain. Read on to learn more!
Heel pain and how we can help
If you are wondering what is causing your heel pain, it could be a few things. You may have heel pain from a heel bruise, or you could have a heel spur, which is caused by excess calcium deposits on your heel.
Out of all the causes of heel pain, however, one of the most common is plantar fasciitis. This condition is caused when the plantar fascia (i.e. the thick band of tissue that runs across your heel) becomes inflamed, something often caused by overpronating (rolling your foot when you walk) or walking/standing on hard surfaces for long periods of time.
For minor heel pain, you can try some simple home remedies to alleviate the issue. For instance, applying ice to your heel can reduce swelling, and taking over-the-counter anti-inflammatory or pain medication can reduce pain. Moderate to severe cases of heel pain, however, should be treated by your podiatrist. At our Norridge office, Dr. Pickard offers several effective treatments to help with heel pain. She may recommend:
- Physical therapy and stretching exercises to maintain flexibility
- Custom-fit orthotics, night splints, or walking casts to support your feet
- Padding or taping your foot and heel for added support
- Cortisone injections to reduce swelling
- Extracorporeal shock wave therapy (ESWT)
Need relief? Give us a call
You don't have to suffer from heel pain—you can find relief by calling Dr. Laura J. Pickard of Norridge Foot Clinic in Norridge, IL. Contact the office today by dialing (773) 625-2211.
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
Are you dealing with heel pain? If so, you aren’t alone. Foot pain, particularly heel pain, is one of the most common complaints and most people will deal with pain at some point during their lifetime. Whether you are on your feet all day for work or you are a runner, there are many risk factors that can play into your likelihood to deal with heel pain. If heel pain is happening to you, you may be wondering what’s causing it and how you can get rid of the pain quickly.
Causes of Heel Pain
As you might imagine, there are many reasons why you might be experiencing heel pain. The root cause will also determine the best course of action for getting your symptoms under control while providing the optimal healing environment for a speedy recovery.
The most common cause of heel pain is an acute inflammatory condition known as plantar fasciitis, in which the thick band of tissue that runs along the soles of the feet from the toes to the heel (known as the plantar fascia) becomes inflamed. Of course, there are other reasons people experience heel pain. Other causes include:
- Achilles tendinitis
- Achilles tendon rupture
- Stress fracture
- Tarsal tunnel syndrome
- Heel spur
- Osteomyelitis (an infection of the bone)
- Page’s disease of bone
- Peripheral neuropathy
Heel Pain Treatment Options
For more mild-to-moderate cases of heel pain, your podiatrist may recommend simple conservative treatment options that you can incorporate into your daily routine from the comfort of home. This is usually the first course of action, unless the condition is more serious. Only once we’ve exhausted at-home care and pain is still present do we decide on more aggressive tactics for handling your symptoms.
Common at-home heel pain treatment options include:
- OTC pain relievers (e.g. ibuprofen)
- Icing the heel several times a day
- Bracing or splinting the foot
- Wearing custom orthotics (shoe inserts)
- Wearing protective and supportive shoes
- Resting and avoiding certain activities or high-impact exercises
If you’ve tried these treatment options for weeks and still don’t notice any change in your symptoms—or if symptoms get worse—then it’s time to visit your foot doctor again to determine the next step. If pain and swelling are severe we may recommend steroid injections, extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT) or ultrasound therapy. In rare cases, surgery may be necessary to correct the imbalance, deformity, or problem that’s causing your chronic or severe heel pain.
Don’t let heel pain affect your day-to-day life when there are simple and easy solutions to manage your symptoms and promote faster healing. Turn to a podiatrist who will be able to handle your heel pain and get your foot health back on track.
Has walking become a painful experience due to heel pain? Our Norridge, IL, podiatrist, Dr. Laura Pickard, discusses several causes of the pain and shares treatment options.
As you grow older, the fat pads that help cushion your heels become thinner, causing pain when you walk or stand. Although there is no way to restore thickness to the pads, you can increase your comfort by wearing comfortable, supportive shoes that offer a little extra cushioning. If you usually wear slippers indoors, your feet may feel better if you switch to shoes instead. Orthotics can also be helpful. The prescription shoe inserts reduce pressure on your foot heel and provide extra cushioning.
Plantar fasciitis, the most common cause of heel pain, occurs when your plantar fascia becomes inflamed. The fascia is a thick band on tissue on the bottom of your foot that connects your heel to your toes. The condition affects more women than men and is more likely to be a problem if you must stand or walk on hard surfaces for long periods of time or enjoy running. Other risk factors include obesity, flatfoot, high arches, overpronation, and tight calf muscles.
Pain due to plantar fasciitis is often worse in the morning, after you walk or exercise, or when you become active again after sitting for a while. If you only have mild pain, rest and ice may relieve your symptoms. If your pain is severe or interferes with your life, you may benefit from a visit to our Norridge office.
Depending on the severity of your symptoms, we may recommend stretching exercises, night splints, orthotics, or cortisone injections. Fortunately, most people who have plantar fasciitis don't need surgery, but it can be the best option in a small percentage of cases.
Inflammation is also the problem if you have Achilles tendinitis. The condition causes pain in the tendon at the back of your heel and may occur if you train too long or too intensely. You may be more likely to develop Achilles tendinitis if you're a runner, stand for long periods or have flat feet or tight calf muscles. Treatment options for this painful condition include cushioning heel cups, walking boots, physical therapy, cortisone injections, ultrasound therapy, or shockwave treatments.
Overcome heel pain with a visit to the foot doctor. Call our Norridge, IL, podiatrist, Dr. Pickard, at (773) 625-2211 to schedule your appointment.