Plantar fasciitis? Podiatrists heal heels
Updated: May 1, 2019
Are you suffering with a sharp pain in your heel when you first stand up, or a dull ache that gets worse through the day?
If you've tried everything and feel frustrated that nothing seems to work, you've come to the right place!
This blog explains the different types of heel pain, how they are treated and how podiatrists at Ayres Health can heal your heels and stamp out your foot pain for good!
What is Plantar fasciitis?
The term plantar fasciitis means inflammation of the plantar fascia, a thick band of tissue that helps support the arch of the foot. However, it is often mistaken for other causes of heel pain. Common causes include:
1. Stress fracture of the calcaneus (heel bone).
2. Fat pad syndrome.
3. Trapped nerve also known as tarsal tunnel syndrome.
4. Achilles tendonitis.
5. Fractures heel spur.
What causes Heel Pain?
Most heel pain conditions are caused by 'over-use' which means applying too much stress to the tissues around the heel. This may be due to standing for long periods of time, walking on hard surfaces, running with a heavy heel strike or having tight calf muscles.
How is Heel Pain treated?
Getting the right diagnosis is key to successful treatment. For example; conditions such as stress fractures need to have a long off-loading period followed by careful reloading, whereas tendonitis needs to be loaded as soon as possible and any prolonged off loading will be detrimental.
Tissue may be offloaded by reducing physical activity, applying a non-stretch tape to the foot or for more complex situations a special boot may be used. When the foot is able to take a load, an MSK podiatrist can guide you through a rehab programme. This usually starts with simple exercises to regain strength which are progressed in complexity over time. This encourages the tissues to adapt to different stresses, aiming to get your body stronger and more robust which helps to prevent recurrence. Have a look at the video below for exercises to get you started.