Heel pain is an all-too-common condition – and unfortunately, way too many people continue enduring that pain day after day without finding the treatment they need.
There are two important facts to understand about heel pain:
- If you have had persistent pain for a while, odds are low it will go away on its own anytime soon.
- Most cases can be effectively treated without surgery. It’s simply a matter of addressing the underlying cause(s) of the problem!
At Advanced Foot & Ankle, we are constantly helping patients in Twin Falls, Burley, and throughout our region find the solutions they need for persistent heel pain. We are experts in not only determining what the cause of your heel pain is but providing the means to most directly and effectively treat it.
What Causes Heel Pain?
The “heel pain” one person experiences can be different from that of another. That’s because there are multiple conditions that can cause such symptoms and underlying reasons why those conditions exist!
Some of the more common conditions that can cause heel pain include:
- Plantar Fasciitis – Among the most common heel pain conditions, in which the tough band of tissue that runs beneath the foot becomes strained, injured, and/or inflamed. If heel pain hits hard in the morning, it might be this
- Achilles Tendinitis – Inflammation of the Achilles tendon that connects the back of the heel bone to the calf muscle. This sports injury often happens because of overuse.
- Stress Fracture – Another overuse injury in which the surface of a bone develops hairline cracks on the surface. Further stress can deepen the cracks and further weaken the bone.
- Bursitis – An inflammation of the small sacs of fluid that provide cushioning between bones and tendons near the heel.
Each of the above causes of heel pain concerns a different section of the heel area. On top of that, simply knowing the condition responsible for the pain isn’t enough. We also must determine the factors that are contributing to that condition if we are to recommend the ideal course of treatment.
A few potential reasons that conditions can develop include:
- Abnormalities in foot structure that force weight to center in certain areas of the foot
- Wearing unsupportive or inappropriate footwear that also improperly distributes your weight
- Strain and overuse during sports, workouts, or other activities
- Spending long periods of time having to stand or be on your feet, especially on hard surfaces
Determining the best way to treat your heel pain means putting all these pieces together.
Treatments for Heel Pain
Step one in heel pain treatment is diagnosis! This means not only thoroughly examining your condition, but learning more about how often you have heel pain, the circumstances that tend to surround it, when it hurts worst, and other questions. The more information we can gather, the better.
Once we have a good understanding of the situation, we can then recommend a treatment plan suited to your needs. A plan can have one or multiple treatments involved. Some (but not all) include:
- The use of custom orthotics to provide better cushioning and corrective support to your feet, countering the effects of structural abnormalities.
- Stretches and conditioning exercises to help strengthen and build endurance in areas that may need it.
- Changes to footwear, activities, and work environment to be more accommodating to your needs.
- Advanced treatments such as laser therapy accelerate recovery of soft tissue injuries and more quickly relieve pain.
Most heel pain cases can be effectively resolved within a few months using conservative treatments such as those above. Surgery is only rarely ever necessary, but we will fully discuss all of your options with you and answer any questions you may have if it happens to become a consideration.
Do not wait any longer to start getting rid of persistent heel pain. It’s time to get the expert care you need and take back your time with greater comfort!
We’re here to help patients throughout Twin Falls, Burley, Jerome, Heyburn, and everywhere else you may hail from.