Proper care of the feet, ankles and other lower extremity structures is essential in the ideal performance of the body. Pain or disease in these parts of the body will compromise normal locomotive function and general support of the body weight. One of the common concerns with regard to this type of care is heel pain. It is a relatively common foot condition that is characterised by pain behind or under the foot's heel. The pain that you will experience can vary in intensity, and it can be short-term or chronic. Here are the primary causes of heel pain and some treatment options.
Pain in the heel is commonly caused by a condition known as plantar fasciitis. Basically, this means that the plantar fascia becomes inflamed, resulting in significant discomfort. The plantar fascia is the general band of tissue found extending from the heel to the area around the toes. If you have this condition, you will feel pain in the bottom part of the heel and the arch, and the pain will intensify when rising. You are more prone to plantar fasciitis if you have a flat foot or high arches. Mild fasciitis can be resolved by choosing better footwear, icing and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. More serious cases will require orthotic devices, physical therapy and even surgical intervention.
Heel bursitis is a condition that is associated with the inflammation of the bursa. The bursa is an important structure that is positioned in the back section of the heel. Basically, this is a relatively small sac filled with fluid. The viscous material is crucial in providing a cushion and reducing friction between the bones in the heel joint. The swelling can be caused by pressure from inappropriate footwear. Moreover, sudden trauma after jumping and landing hard or awkwardly on your heels can cause the problem. The treatment for heel bursitis will depend on severity, but minor damage can be resolved with hot and cold compresses and anti-inflammatory drugs. In severe cases, surgical removal of part of the damaged heel might be necessary.
Heel pain can be caused by stress fractures, a problem that is common in people with physically active lives. Simply speaking, stress fractures are caused by repetitive overuse of the feet and other neighbouring structures. The heel pain will occur when the bones in the area experience a small crack or even significant bruising. In most cases, rest, casting, modified activities and protective footwear will manage the pain and damage.
For more information, contact Dapto Podiatry Clinic or a similar location.