This article was originally written by Hege Crowton
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When dealing with acute pain, like pain in the heel, people remedy it by taking pain relievers or analgesics for quick relief.
However, there can be a lot of causes of for heel pain that one may not be aware of so it is very important to find out where the pain really comes from.
Here are some possible causes and treatments for heel pain.
You may be suffering from plantar fasciitis. The tissue on the arch of the foot gets inflamed therefore giving heel pain. This condition is quite common.
This is due to standing and walking for long periods of time. You can also have heel spur. This is usually seen in patients who have plantar fasciitis.
Tarsal tunnel syndrome can also be a cause for heel pain. This is the counterpart of carpal tunnel syndrome which is associated with the hands.
Similar to that of a person with CTS, there is a nerve at the back of the foot that becomes entrapped. This is what gives the person pain.
Stress fractures can also cause heel pain although this is very uncommon. This is usually experienced by athletes like long distance runners. It affects the calcaneus located in the foot.
One treatment for heel pain can be shoe inserts. More often than not, it can totally eradicate heel pain. These inserts do not interfere with your daily routine thus are very comfortable to wear.
Since heel pain can also be unknowingly caused by one’s footwear, it is better and safe to wear shoe inserts.
You can also consider getting gel heel cups. This can be helpful for patients with plantar fasciitis and heel pain. What these heel cups do is that they provide a soft cushion or padding to the area of the foot that has the most pain.
It elevates the hindfoot slightly therefore reducing the pressure on the plantar fascia. Use them on all your shoes to provide you with more comfort.
Arch supports can also provide relief to patients with heel pain. These supports do not change the mechanics of the foot but it eradicates the symptoms in a number of patients. It can also be helpful to problems like flatfoot and overpronation.
Heel wedges can also be used for heel pain relief. These are placed at the back of the shoes. It takes the pressure off from the hind foot by elevating the heel a little bit.
It can be used to treat patients with Achilles tendonitis. Though people with plantar fasciitis can also use these wedges, the heel cups would be more appropriate for this.
You can start with a small one and then you can increase the wedge if necessary.
Metatarsalgia is a condition wherein pain is experienced underneath the ball of the foot. Metatarsal pads can help in this condition by relieving symptoms.
To decrease heel pain, it pays to take a rest. If you are an athlete, you can take a day or two off from prolonged jogging, running, or walking.
In case your foot or the structures within your foot might be inflamed, it can allow the inflammation to subside.
You can also apply ice packs. Ice packs are commonly used as first aid to pain because like analgesics, it is give quick relief to the person in acute pain.
There is a right way of applying ice packs. Only fifteen minutes is required to do this. Remember that you have to apply the ice immediately after an injury. After forty eight hours, the effect of the icing will subside.
You have to apply the ice directly to the affected part. Move the ice around. Do not let it stay on one spot only. Elevate the injured part. It should be higher than the heart.
This helps reduce the swelling. Do the icing for 15-20 minutes only because if you exceed this time limit, you can damage the tissues more. You may also get frostbite from icing too long.
You can repeat the process if you want but allow it to warm first for at least 45 minutes to an hour. The injured area has to have normal sensation and is warm before starting the procedure again.
Dealing with heel pain is not that complex. However, you have to consult the experts first before anything else since heel pain can be a result of certain factors that need immediate attention.
All efforts of relieving heel pain will render useless without knowing the real root of the discomfort.
There are other risks as you sit in front of that computer but it would be to much to write about in this article, so if you would like to learn more about other risks such as:
RSI (Repetitive Stress Syndrome)
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Constant Head Aches
You can learn all about this in the book: “The Painless PC”