Heel pain causes

heel pain causes
Have you ever jumped out of bed in the morning to be hit with pain under your heel?

During the walking cycle the heel experiences incredible amounts of force due to body weight, gravity and momentum. This impact makes it very difficult for small injuries to heel, and so a cycle of chronic injury and inflammation begins.

This debilitating pain can be caused by some different conditions which we will outline below.

Plantar Fasciitis

Also known as heel spurs and plantar fasciosis

The plantar fascia is a fibrous band, similar to a ligament, which connects the heel to the ball of the foot. It helps to maintain the arch of the foot and acts like a spring to recoil energy and help us move forward. Injury to the plantar fascia is known as plantar fasciitis.

Plantar fasciitis can feel like pain underneath the heel, in the middle of the arch or behind the big toe joint.

It can be caused by poor biomechanics of the foot and leg, wearing unsupportive footwear, exercise, weight gain, having a high or low arched foot, or overuse.

When the plantar fascia is continuously aggravated, a bone spur may develop underneath the heel. This heel spur can extend up to 3.5cm past the end of the heel bone. The heel spur itself may not actually cause any pain, but may be a reflection of irritation to the plantar fascia.

Achilles Tendinitis

Also known as Achilles tendinosis or Achilles tendinopathy

Achilles Tendinitis can cause pain behind the heel bone, in the Achilles tendon, or higher in the calf. It is most common in athletes, but also in people with tight calves, or those that suddenly increase their exercise without the correct preparation.

The Achilles Tendon attaches the calf to the heel bone. It is the strongest and thickest tendon in the body and is responsible for absorbing a great amount of impact. It also has a low blood supply, meaning that once injured it is much more difficult to heal than other tendons in the body.

Injury to this tendon can be severely debilitating, and if left untreated it can lead to rupture or complete tear of the tendon. If Achilles Tendinosis is detected, one should seek treatment by a podiatrist immediately.

Trauma

Including fat pad bruising or calcaneus fracture

A single event of trauma or repetitive stresses to the heel can both cause significant heel pain. This could include falling from a height, leading to a fractured heal bone, or standing on hard floors for prolonged periods of time, causing the heel fat pad to become bruised.

Obesity and pregnancy may contribute to this type of heel pain by increasing forces on the feet and heels. Also, as we age, the fat pad under our heels wears out and becomes thinner, providing less protection for the heel bone and potentially more heel pain.

Arthritis, bursitis and tumours are less common causes of heel pain. Fortunately, there are many treatment options available for those suffering from any of the above types of heel pain. If you are suffering from heel pain of any kind, speak to a podiatrist to formulate a treatment plan and the next step to promote healing.


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Make a podiatrist appointment for heel pain treatment.

Our highly qualified and experienced podiatrists are experts in biomechanics and it’s our philosophy that the finest foot care requires an entirely bespoke experience. That’s why we are dedicated to providing entirely tailor-made diagnosis and treatment services that are the best in Australia.

Our dynamic practice has a holistic approach to resolving foot complaints.

From assessment and diagnosis to extraordinary treatment, every step of your journey with us will deliver you the ultimate podiatric experience, resulting in healthier and happier feet.

Book a consultation with our podiatrists in Sydney (Macquarie St)Darlinghurst and Randwick to discuss your condition and we’ll get you pain-free and back to full function as smoothly and quickly as possible, so you can return to the activities and life you love.

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