Heel pain can prevent you from participating in your favorite activities, such as working out or playing sports, and even make simple activities like walking or standing difficult. Fortunately, heel pain can be treated. Here at Maryland Podiatry Center in Ellicott City, MD, Dr. John Murphy can explain which treatments are appropriate based on the cause and type of heel pain that you have. Read on to learn more!
Causes of Heel Pain
Heel pain can be the result of several factors or conditions. The stress and strain caused by performing repetitive movements, such as jogging or running daily, can lead to heel pain. Another common cause of heel pain is a condition known as plantar fasciitis, which can develop when the plantar fascia tissues along the bottom of the foot become irritated and inflamed. People who overpronate when stepping are especially likely to develop plantar fasciitis. Some other common causes of heel pain include:
- Foot injuries
- Stress fractures
- Heel spurs
Treatments for Heel Pain
There are several ways to treat heel pain. For minor heel pain caused, resting the foot, applying ice, and taking over-the-counter pain relievers is sometimes all that is needed to alleviate the pain and allow the foot and heel to recover from any minor tension or strain. Wearing supportive footwear with sufficient cushioning for the foot and heel can also reduce heel pain, as well as prevent it from occurring in the first place.
Chronic or more severe heel pain should be treated by a podiatrist. Depending on the specific cause of your heel pain, your Ellicott City podiatrist might recommend one or more of the following methods for managing and treating your heel pain:
- Custom orthotics—Devices placed inside the shoes to provide cushioning and stability, as well as support for the arches.
- Physical therapy—Helps improve flexibility in the feet and ankles, as well as strengthen the muscles in the feet.
- Night splint—Helps keep the plantar fascia tissues in the foot in a stretched position for an extended time, which can reduce pain.
- Walking cast—A removable cast worn for several weeks that immobilizes the foot so that it can rest and heal from injury.
- Corticosteroids—A medication injected into the foot to reduce inflammation and alleviate heel pain.
- Surgery—Surgery is sometimes needed to remove painful heel spurs/heel calluses or to correct structural problems in the foot that are causing heel pain.
Need Relief? Give Us a Call
It is possible to experience relief from heel pain. A podiatrist can help by determining the cause of your heel pain and developing a suitable treatment approach. For the treatment of your heel pain, schedule an appointment with Dr. Murphy, your Ellicott City podiatrist, by calling Maryland Podiatry Center at (410) 992-8504.