Pain in your heels and arches doesn’t just affect your lower limbs. It can affect your whole life. It’s hard to stay active or enjoy participating in fun activities if your feet hurt. You’re more likely to spend your time sitting around instead of standing. The good news is that you don’t have to live sitting on the bench, watching everyone else enjoy their favorite activities. You can find out what is causing your heel and arch pain—and then do something about it.
Common Culprits of Heel and Arch Discomfort
There are many underlying causes that lead to discomfort in the heel or the arch. Faulty biomechanics, bad shoes, injuries, overuse, and even being overweight can all contribute to the problem. Here are a few of the most common conditions that may be behind your pain:
This is the most common source of painful heels in adults. Pressure and strain on the feet stresses the plantar fascia band, which then tightens and pulls painfully on the heel bone. This can also aggravate the arch of your foot.
The most common cause of heel pain in children, this condition isn’t actually a disease. It’s a problem with inflammation in the growth plate at the back of the heel from overuse.
Your Achilles tendon is powerful and pulls on the back of your heel bone to move your entire foot. When it becomes irritated, overworked, or even torn, it can create significant discomfort at the back of your ankle.
Tissue at the ends of any two bones in a joint can break down and develop painful arthritis. In your arch, this may make it difficult to walk normally.
Haglund’s deformity is a hard bump on the back of your foot that becomes inflamed and painful when your shoes aggravate it. This can actually pinch the protective bursa between your heel and your Achilles, leading to bursitis as well.
Many things can cause nerves to misfire or malfunction, which causes sharp or burning pain around the damage. Tarsal tunnel, neuromas, and peripheral neuropathy are common problems and can create significant discomfort in the heel or the arch.
This is a biomechanical problem that allows the arch to roll to far down and inward whenever you take a step. This strains the midfoot and can cause discomfort there, as well as in the heel. This may also lead to overuse injuries in other places.
Sports or other impact injuries – Sports and exercise can put a lot of strain on your feet. Sudden accidents can create bruises, fractures, and other painful injuries that may make it difficult to walk or run.
Basic Foot Care for Relief
No one should have to live with heel and arch pain. Our staff at Carolina Podiatry Group will help diagnose your specific condition so it can be treated accurately. Almost across the board, though, the best course of action is rest. Other treatments may range from changing shoes and using orthotics to physical therapy. Only rarely does heel or arch pain require surgery, but depending on the root of the problem, severe cases can be surgically treated.
Prevention Is the Best Treatment
If you don’t want your active life to suffer from foot pain, then take steps to avoid problems before they interfere. Wear the proper shoes for your activity. Make sure they fit well and are not worn. Warm up and stretch before and after exercise, and pace yourself—don’t overdo it! Finally, get plenty of sleep and follow a nutritional diet to manage weight and stay healthy.
You don’t have to suffer alone with your heel and arch pain. Invested care can identify and take care of your foot issues so you get back to a pain-free life. Don’t wait to seek help until you’re limping or have to cut out your activities. Let Carolina Podiatry Group in South Carolina take care of your feet and ankles. Just contact our local offices for an appointment or more information. You can reach us through our website or by phone: (803) 548-FEET for our Fort Mill office, or (803) 285-1411 for the Lancaster location.
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