Heel Pain

What is heel pain?

The heel is a padded cushion of fatty tissue that surrounds the heel bone (the calcaneus) and maintains its shape despite pressure from body weight and movement. It serves as a protective layer for the foot's structures, including the calcaneus, muscles, and ligaments. However, heel pain can arise from various causes, such as plantar fasciitis, Achilles tendonitis, or a tendon injury.


Causes of Heel Pain

  • Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of heel pain. It is a condition that results from inflammation of the plantar fascia, a thick band of tissue that runs across the bottom of the foot. Plantar fasciitis can be caused by a variety of things, including overuse, tight muscles, or high heels. Treatment for plantar fasciitis typically includes rest, ice, and stretching exercises.

  • Achilles Tendonitis

Achilles tendonitis or Achilles tendinosis, commonly known as Achilles tendonitis, is another common cause of heel pain, specifically Achilles tendon pain problems. It is a condition that results from Achilles tendon inflammation, a large tendon that runs down the back of the leg and attaches to the heel bone. Achilles tendonitis, or the term Achilles tendonitis tendinopathy, can be caused by overuse or tight calf muscles. The Achilles heel pain problems treatment to treat Achilles tendinopathy typically includes rest, ice, and stretching exercises.

  • Heel Spurs

Heel spurs, which are bony growths, can develop on the heel bone as a result of repeated stress or an acute injury. These spurs are frequently linked to conditions like plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendonitis.

The treatment for heel spurs generally involves a combination of rest, ice therapy, and stretching exercises to alleviate discomfort and reduce inflammation. In certain instances, when conservative measures fail to provide relief, surgery might be required to remove the heel spur and address the underlying issues effectively.

  • Bone Fractures

Bone fractures can also cause heel pain. Heel fractures are most commonly caused by high-impact activities, such as running or jumping. Treatment for a heel fracture typically includes rest, ice, and immobilization of the foot in a boot or cast. Surgery may also be necessary in some cases.

  • Arthritis

Arthritis is another common cause of heel pain. There are many different types of arthritis that can affect the heel joint, including osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Treatment for arthritis typically includes medication, physical therapy, and weight loss if necessary.


Prevention of Heel Pain

There are several things you can do to help prevent heel pain, including:

  • Wearing proper footwear that provides support for the foot.
  • Stretching the muscles and tendons around the foot and ankle before participating in activities.
  • Decreasing the amount of high-impact activities, such as running, that are done on a regular basis.
  • Adding arch supports or other orthotic devices to your shoes if necessary.
  • Avoiding high heels.
  • Maintaining a healthy weight.

How to treat heel pain?

There are various treatments that can be applied for heel pain, specifically Achilles pain. However, everyone is different. Therefore, we will work with you at Step Relief Healthcare to develop a heel pain treatment plan that works best for you in Melbourne to help facilitate the healing process and get you back on the move.

Treatments can include:

  • Stretching program
  • Orthotics: Customised or Semi Customised:
    • Orthotics help provide support and adjust foot posture to re-distribute plantar pressures, hence reducing stress on certain foot structures.
  • Tapping and Strapping
  • Dry needling
  • Massage
  • And more treatments can be tailored around your specific case.

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