The heel is the largest of the bones in your foot so it’s no surprise that it is the most common cause of foot related pain that we see. Heel pain can develop on the bottom or the back of your heel and at worst can be debilitating.
Misalignment of the feet is often the underlying cause of heel pain. This can increase the stress and wear and tear on the joints and associated soft tissues.
There is a huge variety of reasons that can suddenly trigger the onset of heel pain, such as an increase in activity, a change in footwear, a sporting injury, a change in training activity or training surface, poor shoe/footwear choices and being over-weight to name a few.
The issue is that heel pain is commonly ignored, many people simply shrug off the early signs and leave themselves open to developing a chronic condition that require intensive treatment and even surgery.
Heel pain can be quite complex to treat and what we have found over the years is that there is no ‘single’ treatment that works to fix the problem. It usually requires a combination of things to help get this under control to provide a long term resolution.
At Coastal Podiatry when we treat heel pain we treat the underlying cause of the pain as well as the symptoms.
We tend to see a lot of patients come to us who have had this problem for ages however they have only ever had treatment which has tried to treat the symptoms. Treating only the symptoms of your pain without addressing the underlying cause of the problem will only lead to temporary relief at best.
As a part of your treatment for heel pain a change in footwear maybe advised/needed and this is just as important as the treatment itself. We can provide the best treatment in the world however, if you are not prepared to make the changes needed then this maybe the difference in been pain free or continuing to suffer.
Causes of heel pain.
There are many causes for heel pain. However getting assessed as quickly as possible to get a clear and precise diagnosis would be the best advice.
A lot of heel related problems can be treated quickly and effectively however, if left untreated as we often see then things can escalate resulting in prolonged healing and treatment and often causing other problems elsewhere in the body. This maybe a result of your body trying to compensate and walking differently to try and off-load the pain and in most cases you may not even be aware of this happening.
Here are three causes of heel pain that can be quite common:
- Stone Bruising: The bottom of your heel contains a fat pad that can be bruised when you step firmly on a hard or sharp object like a rock or stone.
- Plantar Fasciitis: This is an inflammation of the fascia (the band that connects your heel bone to the base of the toes). Strenuous activities such as running or jumping can cause this condition. Misalignment of the feet can be sure to cause this condition also. Look for pain that is centered under the heel that flares up when you first step out of bed.
- Heel spur: A condition which may be caused by having prolonged plantar fasciitis.
Heels spurs do not usually cause pain it is usually the inflammation or micro tears in the tissue that cause the pain.
Pain behind the heel
If you notice any pain near your Achilles tendon you probably are experiencing the secondary type of heel pain. Running too hard and too often or simply wearing shoes that put pressure on the back of the heel can cause this. You might notice a bump on the back of the heel or pain that flares up at the start of exercise.
It is important that you contact a podiatrist right away if you notice any of these symptoms. Heel pain is often easily remedied but can cause chronic pain if not diagnosed and treated properly.
Coastal Podiatry on the Sunshine Coast is more than happy to assist you with your heel pain and concerns. Our dedicated team are highly experienced in addressing the root causes of heel pain and have the latest world class treatment and technology to get you back to your best and pain free in the quickest and safest time fame possible.
To find out more information or to book online please visit www.coastalpodiatry.com.au or you can call our friendly admin team on 5492 2944.