Understanding Heel Pain
Heel pain is a common symptom with around 10% of adults suffering at some point in their life. Heel pain is seen most in adults between 40-60 and those who jog or run regularly. However it can affect anyone, at any age.
Common heel pain causes
The most frequent cause of heel pain is known as plantar fascitis. You have a band of tissue which forms the arch of your foot and acts as a kind of shock absorber. This can become damaged, inflamed and thickened leading to pain when you stand or walk.
Another type of heel pain is posterior heel pain which causes pain behind rather than underneath the foot. Causes include the well known Achilles heel (achilles tendonitis) which is an inflammation of the tendon at the back of your ankle.
A type of heel pain which common affects children and adolescents is Sever's disease. This is caused by growth spurts which results in the stretching and tightening of muscles and tendons of the hamstrings and calves.
Other causes can include bursitis, tarsal tunnel syndrome and stress fractures.
Heel pain relief
Heel pain will usually resolve over time and as the causative factor is removed. Rest and regular stretching of calf and foot muscles will help. Hot and cold treatments can help relieve pain, such as an ice pack (best immediately after injury) or microwaveable wheat bag. Painkillers will also help.
Tower Health's natural heel pain solutions
The best foot pain treatment is to address the cause of the pain. Make sure you are wearing well fitting comfortable shoes. This is particularly important whilst exercising. Shoe inserts which cushion or support the feet can be effective, as can support strapping or bandages.