Heel Pain and Spur Care

24 Mar Heel Pain and Spur Care

Heal Your Heel Pain

Maybe you’ve woken in the morning with a stabbing pain in your heel that comes and goes. Women may notice it after wearing high heels. Athletes and people who spend much of the day on their feet often experience heel pain. What’s causing your suffering and how do you fix it?
The two most common causes of heel pain are plantar fasciitis and heel spur.

Plantar Fasciitis

The plantar is the ligament that connects your heel to the rest of your foot. When it works as it’s supposed to, this long, flexible ligament meets the arches and functions smoothly. When it has to stretch to reach the arches it can become strained and torn.

Symptoms

  • Pain that is worse in the morning
  • A swollen heel
  • Pain that goes away when exercising and returns when you stop moving

Heel Spur

This is a buildup of calcium that forms on the heel creating a hard, jagged bump that looks like a spur. Running and jumping, especially on hard surfaces, can lead to this condition, as can risk factors like diabetes and obesity.

Symptoms

  • Feels like a pin stuck in the foot
  • Intermittent pain while walking or jogging
  • Sharp pain in the morning that fades to a dull ache

Chances of contracting one of these conditions worsen if you:

  • are overweight
  • regularly run or jog
  • wear shoes with poor support
  • spend long periods of time on your feet
  • have flat feet or high arches
  • exercise only occasionally

Treatment

The majority of people get better with nonsurgical treatments that include orthotics, stretching exercises and physical therapy.

With any foot or ankle pain, don’t prolong your suffering by thinking, “It will just go away.” It won’t; it will just get worse. Stop the pain in its tracks by getting the correct diagnosis and treatment plan.

Your podiatrist is likely to prescribe:

  • an exercise regimen
  • custom orthotic inserts
  • padding or strapping for your shoes
  • a splint to wear at night
  • cortisol injections
  • a walking cast

At-home Foot Care

  • Rest the affected foot as much as possible
  • Use ice packs and over-the-counter medicines to reduce swelling
  • Practice daily, gentle stretching

In most cases, and with good follow-up care at home, the prognosis is excellent. At Shuman Podiatry we have seen patients experience complete relief within a few months.

To avoid future problems:

  • wear supportive shoes
  • maintain a healthy weight
  • wear orthotics
  • if you run, try a lower-impact exercise
  • replace your workout shoes when they get worn out
  • avoid wearing heels or going barefoot

In a few cases, these measures won’t work and you will need surgery. The best way to avoid that is to practice proper foot care and consult Dr. Shuman or another trusted podiatrist once you experience any symptoms. The sooner these problems are diagnosed the sooner they can be successfully treated. You don’t have to live with pain in your heel, foot or ankle.

Resources: Mayo Clinic – Plantar Fasciitis  or WebMD – Heel Spurs

 

About: Dr. Shuman provides podiatry services in Sterling, Ashburn, Lansdowne and Leesburg Va.  Shuman Podiatry offers custom orthotics, diabetic foot care, heel pain and spurs, wart removal and more.  Contact Dr. Shuman today for all your foot care needs.

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