Did you know that walking just one mile puts 60 tons of pressure on each foot? It’s no wonder heel pain is such a common problem. At Range Foot & Ankle in Virginia and Two Harbors, Minnesota, Katie Evans, DPM, regularly works with patients to treat and relieve heel pain using safe, effective means. If heel pain is preventing you from participating in activities you used to love, call the office nearest you or click the online booking tool today.
Heel pain typically affects the back or underside of your heel and usually becomes worse during physical activity. Some people experience heel pain that’s sharp and stabbing while others suffer from heel pain that’s dull and throbbing. Contrary to popular belief, heel pain usually isn’t the sign of a more serious health problem. In the majority of cases, it’s due to overuse or wear-and-tear injuries caused by activities such as playing sports or exercising.
Heel pain occurs for a variety of reasons. The two most common culprits are Achilles tendinitis and plantar fasciitis. However, other common causes of heel pain include:
You might also develop heel pain as a result of tarsal tunnel syndrome or a bone infection.
Most of the time, heel pain goes away with conservative measures of care such as rest, alternating between ice and heat therapy, and taking over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications. However, if your symptoms persist for more than a week or two, or they’re associated with a fever, numbness, or swelling and immobility, it’s important to make an appointment at Range Foot & Ankle. You should also make an appointment with Dr. Evans if your heel pain persists, even when you’re sitting or laying down.
To diagnose heel pain, Dr. Evans asks you about the symptoms you’re experiencing, reviews your medical history, and physically examines your feet and ankles. She might also ask you to walk around the exam room, stand on one foot, or do other physical tests that help to pinpoint the source of your discomfort. If these methods don’t provide adequate insights, she might also order a series of X-rays.
Treatment for heel pain depends on the source and severity of your symptoms. However, Dr. Evans usually recommends conservative measures of care. For example, she might recommend physical therapy, avoiding activities that caused the problem, or participating in a series of at-home stretches and light exercises. If your pain persists, Dr. Evans might recommend custom orthotics, special inserts, or wearing open-backed shoes.
If heel pain is interfering with your ability to work or exercise, it’s important to seek treatment. Dr. Evans and the team at Range Foot & Ankle can help; call the office nearest you or click the online booking tool to make an appointment today.