Heel pain affects many American adults, limiting mobility and ease of function in their daily routines. Our podiatrists at New England Foot & Ankle Specialists in Reading MA uncover the reasons for heel pain and help people with at-home care which works.
Why does my heel hurt?
It's a question we hear a lot at our Reading office. Sadly, millions of American adults suffer from heel pain, and 60 percent of these people say the discomfort interferes with their activities of daily living, reports the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA). Mostly, heel pain is inflammatory, and your foot doctors typically diagnose a common condition called plantar fasciitis as the source. The best thing to do is talk to your Reading Heel Pain specialist ASAP.
What causes plantar fasciitis?
The plantar fascia is the connective tissue that runs between the heel bone and your toes. Stress occurs through running or being on your feet for hours, irritating it enough to swell and become tender.
Most patients with Reading heel pain report it's worse in the morning after getting out of bed or when they sit for a long time. As they move through the day, the pain subsides, but over many weeks to months, the pain worsens.
Diagnosing and treating heel pain
At New England Foot & Ankle Specialists in Reading, our doctors diagnose plantar fasciitis, and the heel spurs which go along with it, by symptoms and X-ray imaging. Surgery is warranted sometimes to release the tension on the arch of the foot.
However, most Reading heel pain patients benefit from home care. Applied consistently, these strategies help many individuals manage their symptoms and regain their mobility.
Treating your heel pain at home can involve:
- Resting from your feet
- Icing your heel
- Elevating your leg
- Wearing shoes consistently and avoiding going barefoot
- Stretching exercises for the calf muscles along with other kinds of physical therapy
- Medications such as ibuprofen (for more stubborn pain, cortisone injections reduce inflammation)
- Wearing comfortable shoes with low heels and adequate arch supports
- Using shoe inserts (orthotics) to correct muscular instability and improper gait
- Wearing a walking cast and/or splints (particularly useful with young people)
Improve your comfort level
When you address the reasons behind your heel pain, you'll feel better and move with greater efficiency. Your podiatric team at New England Foot & Ankle Specialists asks you to consult with them to create a workable and effective care plan. Call our Reading MA office to arrange a consultation: (781) 944-4044.