If you suffer from pain in your feet, the simplest tasks like walking and moving around can be quite the struggle. There is a wide variety of foot pain one can experience, but one of the most common is heel pain. Many people suffer from heel pain at one point of their lives, and there are several different causes for heel pain, all ranging in severity. For some, heel pain may be temporary, only lasting a couple of days. But for others, it may be a more chronic condition.
One of the most common causes of heel pain is plantar fasciitis, which causes inflammation of the plantar fascia. This is a tough band of tissue beginning at the heel of your foot that travels through the foot to the toes. The condition is caused by overuse and is most commonly seen among older adults, but any age group can experience it.
A person with plantar fasciitis may experience a stabbing pain when they take a step, and the pain may be at its worst first thing in the morning when getting out of bed.
Plantar fasciitis rarely needs surgery, as there are plenty of non-surgical treatment options that can ease symptoms. Some of these remedies include using over-the-counter painkillers, wearing a splint at night, using a gel heel cup for your shoes, and stretching and massaging the area.
Some patients may experience relief soon after treatment while others may need more time. Some patients don’t obtain relief until about six months to a year after, but this is normal based on the severity of the condition.
Depending on the severity of the condition, steroid injections may be recommended, but this could up the risk of future tears of the plantar fascia. Surgery is often the last resort for treating plantar fasciitis.
Other causes of heel pain could result from a stress fracture – commonly seen in runners – insertional Achilles tendinitis, or tarsal tunnel syndrome.
If your heel pain is not resolving after using home remedies and treatments, speak to your doctor to uncover the underlying cause as more intensive treatment may need to be recommended. Always ensure you wear proper footwear and that you are avoiding overuse in order to reduce your risk of heel pain and injury.