The heel is esigned to absorb the impact of your body weight when walking, running or undertaking weight bearing exercise. When pain does develop, it can be very disabling, making every step a problem which in turn affects your overall posture.
Plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of heel pain. The plantar fascia is the ligament between your heel bone and toes that supports the arch of the foot. If you strain your plantar fascia it can become weak, swollen and irritated. This will cause pain in your heel or the bottom of your foot when you stand or walk.
Plantar fasciitis (or heel pain) is a common occurrence. Often, the pain is caused by small repetitive injuries that occur at a rate faster than the body can heal them.
Plantar fasciitis can also be caused by lower back problems or inflammatory joint conditions.
Plantar fasciitis is a common condition and in most cases will diminish following some routine self-care measures. If the pain persists longer than three weeks contact us for further advice.
Plantar fasciitis can affect everyone, whatever your age, but those more commonly affected are the over 40s age group and athletes.
With heel spurs, a deep painful spot is often found around the middle of the heel and is usually worse on standing after long periods of rest. Although the name implies a spur of bone sticking out of the heel bone, around 10% of the population have heel spurs without any pain.
With bursitis, pain can be felt at the back of the heel when the ankle joint is moved. There may also be a swelling on both sides of the Achilles tendon. Or you may feel pain deep inside the heel when it makes contact with the ground.
With heel bumps, these are usually caused by excessive shoe rubbing in the heel area.
Avoid wearing ill-fitting or uncomfortable shoes. Wear shoes with good heel cushioning and effective arch support. Avoid walking or exercising on hard ground, rest regularly and try not to walk or run too fast.
Treatment can take many forms. From resting your foot, stretching exercises, deep heat therapy, steroid injections and medication or surgery. In some cases, padding and strapping is applied to alter the direction of stretch of the ligament. However, for the long-term, special insoles may be prescribed to help the feet to function more effectively.
- Keep your feet clean by washing them every day
- Dry your feet thoroughly after washing them
- Trim your toenails regularly using proper nail clippers
- Change your socks daily to keep your feet fresh
- Wear flipflops in public areas such as showers and swimming pool
Do you require advice? Call us.