Jeepers! My heel hurts!

Let’s talk about heel pain…a very frequent foot complaint we hear time after time. Heel pain is extremely common and there are many different injuries and conditions that may cause it.

Some of these include:

● Abductor Hallucis tendinopathy
● Tibialis Posterior tendinopathy
● Fat pad displacement
● Stress fracture
● Bone bruising
● Nerve impingement, and
● Inflammatory arthritis

However, one of the most common causes of heel pain that we see in the clinic is Plantar fasciitis.

You’ve probably all heard of it and you may have even experienced it and by jingo it is a pesky thing!

I hear you asking…
What is Plantar fasciitis?
Why do I have it?” And most importantly…
How do I fix it?”
Well, you’ve come to the right place!

The Plantar fascia is a band of connective tissue that originates from your heel bone and inserts into the ball of your foot. This band of connective tissue may be small but boy is it mighty and plays a significant role.

Along with a few other structures in your foot, the plantar fascia takes the load of your body weight when you’re up and about. It’s main role is to act as a shock absorber and support the arch of your foot allowing you to walk, run, jump, hop or do whatever you please.

When excessive force is placed on your plantar fascia it can lead to inflammation that involves a strain of the fascia which is what we call plantar fasciitis.

Plantar fasciitis involves extreme tenderness in the heel often with the first few steps in the morning, after standing for long periods of time and pain after but not usually during exercise.

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Excessive force can be placed on the plantar fascia through:

● Certain sports such as running and dancing
● Wearing flat and unsupportive footwear
● Flat-footed or high arched feet
● Tight calf muscles
● Doing too much exercise to soon
● Being overweight
● Being on your feet all day at work
● The ageing process as the plantar fascia becomes weaker, and
● Pregnancy

So, what can you do to fix this…

Firstly, it is always a good idea to consult your Podiatrist if you have heel pain because as mentioned heel pain can be caused by many different injuries and conditions.

If you have been diagnosed with plantar fasciitis, there are many things you can do to ease your pain and suffering.

Initial treatment for plantar fasciitis includes icing, footwear changes, stretching and massaging of the calf musculature and plantar fascia. You can find out how to do these exercises in our ‘Exercises you can do at home for Plantar Fasciitis’ blog.

Footwear should be supportive and stable. Avoid going barefoot or wearing open back sandals, thongs, flats, converses etc.

If you are suffering from heel pain, don’t suffer any longer! Come and visit our Podiatrist at FNQ Health Co and get back doing the
things you love pain free.

We can prescribe you some exercises, offload and help support your plantar fascia by taping your foot, providing you with arch supports or heel raises, doing some dry needling and educating you on supportive footwear.

Bella xxx

Have a question?