Wondering why your heel hurts? Our Grand Rapids, MI, podiatrist, Dr. Charles Solon of Crosswell Podiatry, shares information on several causes of heel pain and explains what can be done to treat the pain.
Do you have cracks on your heels? The cracks, called fissures, can cause pain every time you walk. They form when the skin on your heel dries out. Wearing flip flops or other loose shoes can increase your risk of heel fissures. In most cases, applying moisturizer to your foot and making other footwear choices can help the fissures heal.
Painful stone bruises affect the layer of tissue that pads the bottom of your heel. The bruises may form if you step on a hard object or you frequently run or walk wearing shoes that don't provide adequate support or cushioning. Ice, over-the-counter pain medications and rest help the bruises heal, although you can expect the problem to last for a few weeks.
Inflammation of the plantar fascia is a common cause of heel pain in Grand Rapids. The plantar fascia is a strong band of tissue in the sole of your foot that connects your heel to your toes. The problem is more likely to happen as you grow older, but can also occur if you are overweight, spend long hours on your feet, don't wear supportive shoes or run or walk for exercise. Foot exercise and night splints can help reduce the pain. Foot doctors can provide orthotics, shoe inserts designed to address your problem. In severe cases of plantar fasciitis, surgery may be needed.
Achilles tendinitis develops when your Achilles tendon becomes inflamed due to overuse injuries, tight calf muscles, flat feet or jobs or activities that require long periods of standing. Treatment may include heel caps to cushion and support your painful heel, walking boots, cortisone injections, physical therapy and ultrasound and shock wave treatments. Inflammation can progress to tears if you ignore the problem. The same treatments used to treat inflammation can be used to treat tears, although if the tear is severe, you may need surgery to repair the tendon.
Ease your heel pain with a visit to the foot doctor. Call our Grand Rapids, MI, podiatrist, Dr. Solon of Crosswell Podiatry, at (616) 774-9571 to schedule an appointment.